Put out of misery

Stephen Watt (Letters, 25 January) misrepresents my position on assisted suicide. It is, in fact, the case that animals are treated better than humans in the eyes of the law. If they are in severe pain, animals can have an injection which will give them a quick and humane death. No such right exists for humans. That is morally indefensible.

He also misrepresents what I said about individuals' right to end their own life. No-one is suggesting one person should decide when another should die. That right should only ever be with the individual concerned. Should I ever become incapacitated to the point that I have no control over my bodily functions, I would like a quick and painless death administered by a trained medical professional. I certainly would not want my life prolonged because of the attitude personified by Dr Watt and his Christian allies.

I find it strange that Mr Watt says I am a part of the "death lobby" then goes on to accuse me of intemperate blustering. It requires tremendous mental gymnastics to use such a loaded and emotive term as "death lobby" then say I am the one who is being intemperate. He should look at who the most vocal opponents of the assisted suicide bill are: the Free Church, the UK Life League, Christian Voice, Repent UK and the Catholic Church. These groups fit the very definition of religious cranks.


Noran Ave


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In a letter otherwise supportive of the assisted suicide bill, Malcolm Ewen (Letters, 26 January) correctly identifies one of its main risks: that it will reduce medical research and the availability of palliative care.

However, to identify a problem is not to solve it. Killing will always be the quickest and cheapest solution to serious illness. If allowed as a treatment option, it will inevitably undermine other, costlier responses.


Greenfield Crescent

Balerno, Midlothian