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Breaking the law to force euthanasia debate | The Saturday Paper

May 3, 2014

Breaking the law to force euthanasia debate | The Saturday Paper.

“It’s strange to think now, but for a short time the Northern Territory was the global vanguard of euthanasia laws – the first jurisdiction in the world to explicitly sanction it, as opposed to the Netherlands where it was simply decriminalised, and the US state of Oregon, where physician-assisted suicide was decriminalised. The legislation that gave Dent’s death its quiet dignity was made possible by the rare and dogged will of then chief minister Marshall Perron, but was quickly undone by the will of the federal government.”

“The people want this. Many polls show public support for euthanasia consistently above 70 per cent. But the issue terrifies politicians.”

“There’s two aspects to the opposition. The opposition to legislative change comes from the Catholic hierarchy. Not the Catholics on the street, but the hierarchy. And not even from other churches; they’re more ambivalent. But [the Catholic Church is] well organised, well financed, and exercises significant political pressure. It was behind the repeal of the NT legislation. And I think politicians are scared of that influence, especially if you’re in a marginal seat. The second thing is that the parliamentary debate isn’t very good. They’re very, very busy people. Look at the debate when Marshall Perron’s bill was knocked over. It was drivel. They did not understand the issues. They were influenced by fear. It was FUD. Fear, uncertainty and doubt.”

Voluntary Euthanasia is one of those issues I will continue to campaign for until my own dying day.

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One Comment
  1. Reblogged this on oogenhand.

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