Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Pro-suicide advocacy in Globe and Mail

Wesley Smith
By Wesley Smith, published on his blog, March 2, 2013

Here we go again. A woman committed suicide and it is depicted in the press as a positive – "on her own terms.”
And note, she was not terminally ill, the usual excuse for supporting suicide. From the Globe and Mail story, “A Social Activist’s Ultimate Legacy: Advocating for the Right to Die:”
Ruth Goodman died the way she lived – on her own terms. She campaigned for social justice all her adult life: by training as a welder to earn the same wages as men in wartime shipyards, by speaking out for freedom of expression during the McCarthy era, by picketing napalm manufacturers in Seattle during the Vietnam War and by challenging the abortion laws in Canada after she and her husband moved north to Vancouver with their young sons to evade the voracious American military draft.
Why should life be prolonged for an aged social activist who believed the right to die was the ultimate human choice? That’s the question raised in the aftermath of Ms. Goodman’s death by her own hand and in her own bed on Feb. 2. “People are allowed to choose the right time to terminate their animals’ lives and to be with them and provide assistance and comfort, right to the end. Surely, the least we can do is allow people the same right to choose how and when to end their lives,” she wrote in a suicide note made public by her now middle-aged sons…
This impacts others, who may be on the edge of suicide and reading the story of suicide as a positive could push them over. That’s why the WHO urges media not to publish pro suicide stories – not that it probably even crossed the minds of the reporter and editors of the Globe and Mail.
That point aside, this is where we now are–thanks in large part to the euthanasia/assisted suicide movement and a complicit media that extols many suicides these days as a matter of social justice. Suicide is being transformed into a human right before our very eyes. But if it’s a “right” that meansfor anyone and any reason:
Death on demand. Reader take warning!

1 comment:

Madellen said...

The literature on suicide, as a social problem, has gathered statistics on 'suicide contagion' caused by media coverage that glorifies or distorts a personal suicide. It can trigger someone else to do the same; a young person, an old person, doesn't matter, anyone who hears that it is ok to end your suffering by suicide, and who is in a contemplation stage.
It would be interesting to see if suicide rates have increased in BC over the past few years, but hard to correlate them directly with recent media/debate. A survey type study might be useful, in suicide prevention centres and mental health clinics, hospitals among vulnerable youth and adults to see if and how they are being influenced by the current media and debates. A good project for the Suicide Prevention Coalition.

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