Category: News

Clive James on his illness

Clive James – the great Australian critic, poet, writer and performer – was diagnosed with leukaemia in 2010. He has continued to read and write, voraciously, while he receives treatment at Cambridge’s Addenbrooke hospital. Nurses are on my mind of late. At Addenbrooke’s I see them all the time, and I expect the day will… Read more »

FBI reports hate crimes against disabled persons in 2014

The FBI collects crime statistics from 15,494 American law enforcement agencies. Its latest report  identifies that in 2014 there were 84 offences against 96 people because of their mental or physical disabilities. Note: these were only the reported cases. Click here to read the tables. Earlier this year, The Guardian reported on disability hate crimes in… Read more »

Canadian euthanasia committee says 12-year olds should be eligible

by Sharon Kirkey, National Post, 14 December 2015 The nine-member “expert panel” advising Canadian provinces on the implementation of Carter v Canada argues there should be no “arbitrary age limits” for assisted death, and that eligibility should be based on maturity and mental competence, not age. “A five-year-old? A seven-year-old? They would never be seen as… Read more »

First glimmers of second thoughts in Belgium

by Andy Furniere, Flanders Today, 9 December 2015 Belgium has the world’s broadest euthanasia law. Some people are now having second thoughts: 65 psychiatrists, psychologists and professors have published an Open Letter saying that euthanasia should not be available for psychological suffering alone. On average, 2,000 people a year in Belgium choose to end their lives… Read more »

Group encouraging doctors to sign letter against assisted suicide

by John Weekes, New Zealand Herald, 9 December 2015 New Zealand doctors are signing up to an online Open Letter at to support the NZMA’s position statement that euthanasia and assisted suicide are unethical, even if they were made legal. Care Alliance secretary Matthew Jansen said opposition to assisted suicide was growing around the world. “Just… Read more »

Pride and Prejudice: Part Two of Why I Oppose Assisted Suicide Legislation

by Ingrid Tischler, Tales From The Crip, 5 December 2015 Ms Tischler is a wickedly funny satirist living in California and writing about seriously un-funny things. Her re-writing of a key scene from Pride and Prejudice is sub-titled ‘It is a truth universally acknowledged that a woman in possession of a neurodegenerative disease must be in… Read more »

Dying with dignity: let’s focus more on the latter

by Stella Young, The Drum, 14 November 2014 Stella Young, an Australian comedian, died suddenly a year ago. The previous month she had written an opinion piece for the ABC. About five years ago I found myself in the small holding bay of a hospital operating theatre. Swimming in my enormous white gown and little… Read more »

How Does Legalization of Physician-Assisted Suicide Affect Rates of Suicide?

by David Albert Jones and David Paton, Medscape Jones and Paton analysed data in the United States to understand the impact of assisted-suicide laws on the overall suicide rate. The news is not good. Conclusions: Legalizing PAS has been associated with an increased rate of total suicides relative to other states and no decrease in nonassisted suicides. This… Read more »

The Secret Life of Grief

by Derek Thompson, The Atlantic, 3 December 2013 A longer weekend read from two years ago: Derek Thompson’s funny sad honest memories of the death of his beloved mother lead him to discover resilience in grief. This is how we have better conversations about dying. Eulogies ought to begin with a laugh, I decided, so… Read more »

A scandal in the euthanasia archives

by Ian Dowbiggin, The Prince Arthur Herald, 30 November 2015 Ian Dowbiggin teaches history at the University of Prince Edward Island, and is the author of A Merciful End: The Euthanasia Movement in Modern America. One thing is clear: if the euthanasia movement’s records have indeed been destroyed, a lot of history has vanished, Orwell-like, down a… Read more »