Euthanasia <Greek eu-well + thanatos-death> is, thank liberal laws allowed in Switzerland.
No it doesn’t mean you can dispose of your Mother-in-law here when you get tired of looking after her. There are quite a few paragraphs to stop you doing this.
But it does mean anyone suffering physically beyond his limits, and without any hope of being healed has the right to die. Provided two medical doctors certify this is correct and the person can swallow, or turn on the infusion containing the usually given barbiturates himself he is on the right side of the law, if not of Heaven.
Hospitals don’t really care for this procedure. I don’t think it’s a matter of ethics, more of mucking up their look good statistics. But a patient can be discharged home or where ever to do what he likes.( Nursing homes are much more lenient, palliative suicide is carried out regularly and escorted suicide if wished)
This is where a couple of private suicide organisations Exit and Dignitas come in. Membership of the first,and they have over 70’000 members, is restricted to Swiss citizens, the other is not, and suddenly what is good for the Goose is not good for the Gander.
The procedure which of course is very discreet, and almost routine. If you have paid your subscription regularly,your papers are in order and you don’t wish to, or can’t die at home you will be taken by an “escort” to a quiet house somewhere, given your potion to swallow and a few hours later carried out. People don’t normally want the nice house next door to have a red light in the window so they certainly don’t want it to be used for these purposes.
The papers last week were full of a court case concerning an area in the agglomeration of Zürich ; Neighbours versus Neighbours.
It wasn’t just the psychological problems caused by living next door to a house of ill repute you could almost say, no it was that the house was rented to the organisation which admitted foreigners, and no one wanted suicide tourists.
Someone suggested they did it straight at the cemetery if they couldn’t find anywhere else!
I won’t try and give my opinion to the issue as yet, althoughI have been confronted with death and dying for all of my professional life and I don’t like seeing people suffer. But I’d like to read yours.
I just vaguely remember seeing a Sydney Pollacks’ film way back and rather on this theme ,”They shoot horses don’t they?”
But abortion or euthanasia it’s all a question of ethics, in this very ethical world.