Cancer debate

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THE Rev Dr John Cameron displays a spectacular lack of emotional intelligence (Letters, 6 January) in his appraisal of the death by cancer debate.

He describes Dr Richard Smith’s comments about cancer being the best way to die as “grimly ironic”, but perhaps he should read the full blog and Dr Smith’s follow-up comments to get the proper gist of his argument. He might then be better informed and be able to contribute something meaningful to the debate.

As someone who is living with cancer, I fully understand what Dr Smith was trying to say in terms of the opportunities it
affords sufferers, but it’s a great pity a valid message was lost in the way he put it across.

My reaction does not constitute a lack of humour.

Indeed, many cancer sufferers cope by using humour to deflect attention from the real horrors they are facing and crucially to protect those close to them. For the Rev Dr Cameron to accuse people of being “deficient in the fabled British sense of humour” over Dr Smith’s remarks is a total nonsense.

He obviously enjoys glib letter- writing as a way to fill his retirement, but I suggest that he picks different topics or finds another hobby that is more productive.

Stuart Riddell

Bonaly Wester

Edinburgh

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