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#1 2002-07-08 21:54:17

Palomar
Member
From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

*I presume the first [and subsequent] manned Mars missions will include cyanide capsules or a similar option for quick and painless suicide in the event of something terribly tragic occurring?

*I advocate voluntary euthanasia, i.e. a person's right to die [provided the person is of sound mind and in possession of full cognizance during such a request].  I'd hope that any human society on Mars would recognize this right and allow its practice.  How do you all feel about this? 

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#2 2002-07-09 03:47:56

Aetius
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From: New England USA
Registered: 2002-01-20
Posts: 173

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

No one should be forced to die of starvation (or thirst, radiation sickness, et cetera) on an alien planet. Grim though the possibility might be, I'd hope they discreetly take the pills along.

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#3 2002-07-09 05:39:22

Byron
Member
From: Florida, USA
Registered: 2002-05-16
Posts: 844

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

I second this notion.  I think voluntary euthanasia should be a part of every Martian settler's rights on Mars...

B

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#4 2002-07-09 06:13:10

Shaun Barrett
Member
From: Cairns, Queensland, Australia
Registered: 2001-12-28
Posts: 2,843

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

I believe cyanide pills cause death quickly, with muscle twitches and frothing at the mouth. But is it really painless, as Cindy suggests?
   Maybe it's just that nobody has been available afterwards to report that it hurt like hell!!
                                            sad


The word 'aerobics' came about when the gym instructors got together and said: If we're going to charge $10 an hour, we can't call it Jumping Up and Down.   - Rita Rudner

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#5 2002-07-09 07:55:57

Palomar
Member
From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

I believe cyanide pills cause death quickly, with muscle twitches and frothing at the mouth. But is it really painless, as Cindy suggests?
   Maybe it's just that nobody has been available afterwards to report that it hurt like hell!!
                                            sad

*Lol!  Okay, Shaun...I stand corrected.  smile  Maybe it's not painless.

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#6 2002-07-09 08:00:12

clark
Member
Registered: 2001-09-20
Posts: 6,345

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

I advocate voluntary euthanasia, i.e. a person's right to die [provided the person is of sound mind and in possession of full cognizance during  such a request].  I'd hope that any human society on Mars would recognize this right and allow its practice.

If we hold that murder is wrong, or should I say, the taking of a life, is wrong- how can we reasonably justify that the murder of self is less wrong?

Cindy, you suggest that a person be of "sound mind, etc."- is it "sound" to end your life? Sanity is usualy determined by examining wheter or not an individual is engaged in self-destructive behavior- suicide is pretty final in its self-destruction. So how can anyone who chooses their own death be considered to have a sound mind? 

Of course there is the emotional argument, the "death with dignity" point of view, and I grant that this is a very noble argument. However, the fact remains that if someone is facing severe pain caused by a debilitating disease, then there is very little possibility that they could be thinking in a stable frame of mind- the pain affects their thinking, which means they can never qualify for the "sound mind" critera.

Also, if you allow for the "right to die", you allow for ALL suicides. Who are you or I to decide wheter or not someone should continue or not- imagine the throngs of disaffected teenagers that throw themselves from bridges- and we as a society would have to defend that action- it is grotesque.

Right now we consider the taking of our own life as justifiable when we are faced with overwhelming and debilitating life changes brought on by pain- how far will this slide before "overwhelming depression" becomes a justifiable reason?

How long before people are "encouraged" to take their own life instead of dealing, or facing the pain they may be subjected to- how long before we decide that euthanasia is really "okay" and then start to encourage people to kill themselves in order to save on the cost of keeping them alive.

No, you have no right to kill yourself, anymore than someone else has a right to kill you. Your life is sacrosanct- either life has the dignity of life, or it dosen't. Choose.

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#7 2002-07-09 09:10:43

Palomar
Member
From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

*Another matter which I've been thinking about are the elderly on Mars.  Bone tissue and the cardiovascular system weaken or diminish in lesser gravity, and the elderly already face troubles in this regard [especially in women, i.e. loss of bone mass in the perimenopausal phase].  Sure, exercise and diet supplements can be deterrants -- to an extent.  These specific troubles are bad enough on Earth.  I am worried about senior citizens on Mars.

Clark, I'll get to your post later in the day.

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#8 2002-07-09 10:26:24

Palomar
Member
From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

Clark:  If we hold that murder is wrong, or should I say, the taking of a life, is wrong- how can we reasonably justify that the murder of self is less wrong?

*Why call suicide "murder"?  Is the scientist of old who injected *himself* with a vaccination preparation, in order to test its efficacy, possible side effects, etc., the same sort of scoundrel who subjected unwilling persons to the same sort of testing?  No.  What is done to the self [voluntary death] is different from murder [done to another, resulting in their involuntary death].

Clark:  Cindy, you suggest that a person be of "sound mind, etc."- is it "sound" to end your life?

*Psychological batteries of testing can be applied to a person requesting euthanasia, to determine if they are cognizant, aware, etc.  As for "is it SOUND to end your life?" -- it could be.  Suppose Settler Williams on Mars gets horribly burned in an accident; 2nd and 3rd degree burns over 80% of her body.  Plastic surgery techniques here on Earth are only partially successful in healing, and even less so in the cosmetic aspect.  The cache of pain medications will run out within a week, though she's been stabilized and will not die of loss of body fluid, etc.; she is aware of what's happened to her and cannot bear the thought of what she now looks like, and having to live with that...she wants to die.  It's her life, it's her right to die.

Clark:  Sanity is usualy determined by examining wheter or not an individual is engaged in self-destructive behavior- suicide is pretty final in its self-destruction.

*Settler Williams' request to die because of her horrible burns and the hideous deformities which will result seems more to me an an attempt at saving herself.

Clark:  So how can anyone who chooses their own death be considered to have a sound mind? 

*I can think of many instances where suicide is the mark of an incredibly sound mind.

Clark:  Of course there is the emotional argument, the "death with dignity" point of view, and I grant that this is a very noble argument. However, the fact remains that if someone is facing severe pain caused by a debilitating disease, then there is very little possibility that they could be thinking in a stable frame of mind- the pain affects their thinking, which means they can never qualify for the "sound mind" critera.

*The pain won't effect their thinking if they are on pain medications at a level where awareness and rational thought are still possible for them.  There's death with dignity -- and then there's QUALITY OF LIFE.  I'd rather have quality of life.

Clark:  "Also, if you allow for the "right to die", you allow for ALL suicides. Who are you or I to decide wheter or not someone should continue or not- imagine the throngs of disaffected teenagers that throw themselves from bridges- and we as a society would have to defend that action- it is grotesque."

*What's so bad about suicide?  It's not for me to decide whether another person should continue or not -- it's THEIR decision.  And I'd rather have disaffected persons [I won't pick on teenagers] throw themselves from a bridge than to run into a mall, spraying bullets at groups of people.

Clark:  "Right now we consider the taking of our own life as justifiable when we are faced with overwhelming and debilitating life changes brought on by pain- how far will this slide before "overwhelming depression" becomes a justifiable reason?"

*Most anti-euthanasia sentiments have come about from religious sentiment that persons who commit suicide go straight to hell.  I'm not saying you believe this, but that was the Church's propoganda for years.  As for a justifiable reason for suicide -- you can't make this a "blanket" issue.  Each person can and should decide for themselves, based on the particulars of what's going on in their life.

Clark:  "How long before people are "encouraged" to take their own life instead of dealing, or facing the pain they may be subjected to- how long before we decide that euthanasia is really "okay" and then start to encourage people to kill themselves in order to save on the cost of keeping them alive."

*So we should encourage people to suffer?  People cannot be encouraged to kill themselves who don't want to.  Heck, I've transcribed countless medical reports of people who feign suicide attempts...they want to die, so they say, and swallow a huge handful of pills, only to rush to the phone and call and ambulance.  Most people who attempt suicide don't carry through, or make only a half-hearted attempt which comes down to attention-seeking behavior only.  THESE people need to reassess themselves, come to terms with life [since they obviously don't really want to die], get a grip and get some help.  Thus, I can't foresee people being "encouraged" to commit suicide and following through; even some of the most depressed persons or persons with emotional troubles want to continue living.  The will to live is strong in humans.  But for those who don't wish to go on living, it's their body and life, it's their decision.  Who are you to say this isn't so?

Clark:  "No, you have no right to kill yourself, anymore than someone else has a right to kill you. Your life is sacrosanct- either life has the dignity of life, or it dosen't. Choose."

*There's dignity of life and there's quality of life.  Personally, I'd rather be dead than live under Taliban-like rule.  Self-love and self-preservation can be expressed in suicide.  I'd rather have the dignity of taking my own life than allow a group of persons [enemy] to take it from me.

I don't equate murder with suicide.  Again, a person's life is their own right.  Suicide is no more NOT their right than having plastic surgery or getting their teeth cleaned or plucking their eyebrows isn't their right.

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#9 2002-07-09 11:37:53

clark
Member
Registered: 2001-09-20
Posts: 6,345

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

*Why call suicide "murder"?

Because that is what it is. Murder is the ending of a life by SOMONE, with forsight, and with intention. Isn't that ECACTLY what suicide is?

Is the scientist of old who injected *himself* with a vaccination preparation, in order to test its efficacy, possible side effects, etc., the same sort of scoundrel who subjected unwilling persons to the same sort of testing?  No.

You are attempting to rationalize a behavior- this anaolgy does not apply to the ending of a life. They used to rationalize that Jews were not human, so it was okay to kill them- the planned taking of a life, by anyone, is murder, no matter how you may rationalize this act. Try establishing that we have a right to murder ourselves.

What is done to the self    [voluntary death] is different from murder [done to another, resulting in their involuntary death].

Why is it different? How is it different? Just becuase one you exercsie a "choice" does not make it okay. Can I "choose" to be a slave? The act debases all life, and brings into question the role of Society- it exsists to ensure and protect youe LIFE and rights. Are you proposing that we have a right to choose when Society acts in this capacity?

*Psychological batteries of testing can be applied to a person requesting euthanasia, to determine if they are cognizant, aware, etc.

Please provide me with the OBJECTIVE critera of when, how, and why killing yourself is a sound idea.

As for "is  it SOUND to end your life?" -- it could be.  Suppose Settler Williams on Mars gets horribly burned in an accident; 2nd and 3rd degree burns over 80% of her body.

Then it is horrible. You can come up with a million "exceptions" that cry out for "mercy", but they are rationalizations. If you establish that we have the right to end our lives at the moment of our choosing, then you neccessarily establish that right for everyone, to be exercised at anytime. That means we, as people dealing with people, are powerless to PREVENT those who think they wish to end their life- after all it is a personal decision, and a personal right- we would in fact have to instutite (to avoid hypocrisy) laws that prevent people from interfering with someone exercising this "right".

she is aware of what's happened to her and cannot bear the thought of what she now looks like, and having to live with that...she wants to die.  It's her life, it's her right to die.

Imagine Settler Williams is fat (no burns)- about 30 pounds or so. She feels bad about her self image, and hasn't had a date in a long time. She hates the way she looks. She decides to kill herself and be done with it. It's her life, right? Or what about Jimmy, studying for finals, to many units- feels like he is going to fail the expectations of his family- rather than living with this supposed shame, he kills himself. Well, it is his right, isn't it?

You argue for this world, why?

*Settler Williams' request to die because of her horrible burns and the hideous deformities which will result seems more to me an an attempt at saving herself.

Ah, to save the village, we had to destroy the village. Good lesson. Settler Williams is NOT attempting to save herself- being dead is not "saving self". The death is an immideate release from the pain- that is what she is trying to do, escape the pain. That's what suicide is Cindy.

*I can think of many instances where suicide is the mark of an incredibly sound mind.

Name ONE. The only "rational" reason for suicide is to trade your life for another, or multiple others; i.e. jumping on a gernade- at that point it is an act of SACRIFICE, not suicide.

*The pain won't effect their thinking if they are on pain medications at a level where awareness and rational thought are still possible for them.

I find it hard to accept that the pain medication would NOT affect their thought process in some manner- if it does, then they are not exactly in a frame of mind that can be considered "whole".

There's death with dignity -- and then there's QUALITY OF LIFE.  I'd rather have quality of life.

What quality of life do you have if you are dead?

*What's so bad about suicide?  It's not for me to decide whether another person should continue or not -- it's THEIR decision.

What if it is a sports hero? A community leader? A person your children look up to, or admire? Is this really the type of example you want set?

And I'd rather     have disaffected persons [I won't pick on teenagers] throw themselves from a bridge than to run into a mall, spraying bullets at groups of people.

As would I, but that dosen't justify it in anyway.

*Most anti-euthanasia sentiments have come about from religious sentiment that persons who commit suicide go straight to hell.

True, but as you might notice, I am not refrencing God in any way.   tongue

Each person can and should decide for themselves, based on the particulars of what's going on in their life.

So you are okay with Mothers of 12 killing themselves becuase they are bored or just tired of being Mom? I fail to see the wisdom in that.

*So we should encourage people to suffer?

No, i never even hinted at that. Are you implying our response should be, "oj, you feel bad? Well, go ahead and end it all so you won't feel bad anymore."

People cannot be encouraged to kill themselves who don't want to.

Yes, they can. We have an entire industry that encourages people to lose weight, not eat, to fit a body image that is unrealistic. People can, and are encouraged to do things that they don't neccessarily "want" to do. Who "wants" to go hungry? Peopl do it anyway though.

Who are you to say this isn't so?

A loud mouth with more sense.   tongue

*There's dignity of life and there's quality of life.  Personally, I'd rather be dead than live under Taliban-like rule.

If you are dead, there is NO LIFE- there can be no quality, there can be no dignity, there is only a dead corpse (which can be disposed of by the State! smile ). Apparently you have certain "standards" that you would live under- how is ending your life going to bring about those standards?

Self-love and  self-preservation can be expressed in suicide.

How exactly?

I'd rather have the dignity of taking my own life than allow a group of persons [enemy] to take it from me.

If someone is intent on killing you and you beat them to the punch, they have still murdered you- they forced you to die.

Suicide is no more NOT their right than having plastic surgery or  getting their teeth cleaned or plucking their eyebrows isn't their right.

Plastic surgery and teeth cleaning do not infringe on any of your other rights- death does.

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#10 2002-07-09 12:25:22

Palomar
Member
From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

ME:  Why call suicide "murder"?

CLARK:  Because that is what it is. Murder is the ending of a life by SOMONE, with forsight, and with intention. Isn't that ECACTLY what suicide is?

*Suicide is ending the life of one's self, with foresight and intention.  It's NOT murder, because it is self-inflicted.  Murder is the ending of one's life by ANOTHER. 
Masturbation isn't rape, is it?

ME:  Is the scientist of old who injected *himself* with a vaccination preparation, in order to test its efficacy, possible side effects, etc., the same sort of scoundrel who subjected unwilling persons to the same sort of testing?  No. 

CLARK:  You are attempting to rationalize a behavior- this anaolgy does not apply to the ending of a life. They used to rationalize that Jews were not human, so it was okay to kill them- the planned taking of a life, by anyone, is murder, no matter how you may rationalize this act. Try establishing that we have a right to murder ourselves.

*Try and establish that we DON'T have a right to commit suicide.  And by the way, the Nazi/Jew issue has NOTHING to do -- ethically, morally, or otherwise -- with Joe Snow wanting to kill himself, any more than Joe masturbating is the equivalent of Fred Jones forcibly raping a woman.

ME:  "What is done to the self    [voluntary death] is different from murder [done to another, resulting in their involuntary death]."

CLARK:  "Why is it different? How is it different?

*Self-imposed versus other-imposed. 

CLARK:  Just becuase one you exercsie a "choice" does not make it okay.

*Okay or not okay -- by what standards?  The Bible?  Dear Abby's advice column? 

CLARK:  Can I "choose" to be a slave?

*Yes.  So long as you don't force others to be a slave.

Clark:  The act debases all life,

*It does?  How?

CLARK:  "and brings into question the role of Society- it exsists to ensure and protect youe LIFE and rights. Are you proposing that we have a right to choose when Society acts in this capacity?"

*Darling, I'm looking at this from an INDIVIDUALISTIC point of view.

ME:  Psychological batteries of testing can be applied to a person requesting euthanasia, to determine if they are cognizant, aware, etc. 

CLARK:  Please provide me with the OBJECTIVE critera of when, how, and why killing yourself is a sound idea.

*Okay.  Have you ever read _The History of Torture_?  How about _Foxe's Book of Martyrs_?  Suppose you lived in 1564, had been accused and pronounced guilty of being a heretic.  You are taken to prison, and know you will be subjected to torture resulting in excruciating pain, i.e. the rack, water torture, having your toe- and fingernails torn off with hot pincers, etc., and that regardless of "confessing" under these hideous tortures you WILL be led to a stake and burned to death.  This used to happen in Europe on an almost daily basis, you know.  Escape is impossible, and getting out on bail [or otherwise] is equally impossible.  Suppose you find that someone had carelessly left a rope in your confinement area, and that there's a stool and rafter beam also in your confinement area...and you're alone.  Would you hang yourself, or allow yourself to be tortured for hours and days on end, and finally wind up dying a long, agonizing death?  I'd hang myself.  That would be death with dignity, and would cheat the Inquisitors out of their "fun."

ME:  As for "is  it SOUND to end your life?" -- it could be.  Suppose Settler Williams on Mars gets horribly burned in an accident; 2nd and 3rd degree burns over 80% of her body.

CLARK:  Then it is horrible. You can come up with a million "exceptions" that cry out for "mercy", but they are rationalizations.

*Is it rationalization or it is a REASON?

CLARK:  If you establish that we have the right to end our lives at the moment of our choosing, then you neccessarily establish that right for everyone, to be exercised at anytime.

*And?

CLARK:  That means we, as people dealing with people, are powerless to PREVENT those who think they wish to end their life- after all it is a personal decision, and a personal right- we would in fact have to instutite (to avoid hypocrisy) laws that prevent people from interfering with someone exercising this "right".

*And?

ME:  she is aware of what's happened to her and cannot bear the thought of what she now looks like, and having to live with that...she wants to die.  It's her life, it's her right to die.

CLARK:  Imagine Settler Williams is fat (no burns)- about 30 pounds or so. She feels bad about her self image, and hasn't had a date in a long time. She hates the way she looks. She decides to kill herself and be done with it. It's her life, right? Or what about Jimmy, studying for finals, to many units- feels like he is going to fail the expectations of his family- rather than living with this supposed shame, he kills himself. Well, it is his right, isn't it?

*Yes, it's their right.  In this instance, Settler Williams can go on a diet [or YOU could ask her out for a date, Clark, to make her feel better], can try makeup, can exercise regularly...or she can kill herself.  As for Jimmy -- that's his choice as well.  How would YOU tell these people they CANNOT kill themselves?  How can preventing people from committing suicide be enforced, and on what basis?

ME:  Settler Williams' request to die because of her horrible burns and the hideous deformities which will result seems more to me an an attempt at saving herself.

CLARK:  Ah, to save the village, we had to destroy the village. Good lesson.

*What does that statement have to do with the subject at hand?  Nothing.  I'm not speaking collectively -- I'm speaking for the individual.  Do you believe The State or The Society has a right to tell people they can't commit suicide?  And what would be their basis for such a pronouncement?

CLARK:  Settler Williams is NOT attempting to save herself- being dead is not "saving self". The death is an immideate release from the pain- that is what she is trying to do, escape the pain. That's what suicide is Cindy.

*And what's so wrong with escaping pain?  If Settler Williams the burn victim knows she will experience excruciating, horrible pain after the pain meds run out -- and the next shipment from Earth won't arrive for another month -- what, should she allow to groan, writhe, scream, and cry out for relief?  That's cruel.  Would YOU be willing to walk into her room, look at her and tell her, "We're sorry, Settler Williams, but you'll be out of pain medications in a few days and you'll just have to grin and bear it."  Yeah, right.

ME:  I can think of many instances where suicide is the mark of an incredibly sound mind. 

Clark:  Name ONE.

*I already have -- more than once. 

CLARK:  The only "rational" reason for suicide is to trade your life for another, or multiple others; i.e. jumping on a gernade- at that point it is an act of SACRIFICE, not suicide.

*Now you're talking about altruism.  You're going off-topic.

ME:  There's death with dignity -- and then there's QUALITY OF LIFE.  I'd rather have quality of life.

CLARK:  What quality of life do you have if you are dead?

*There are things worse than death, Clark.  That's the point I'm trying to make.

ME:  What's so bad about suicide?  It's not for me to decide whether another person should continue or not -- it's THEIR decision. 

CLARK:  What if it is a sports hero? A community leader?

*Oh, you mean the people who regularly snort cocaine, seduce underage teenage girls, embezzle, etc.?

CLARK:  A person your children look up to, or admire? Is this really the type of example you want set?

*It won't be an example.  As I pointed out in my last post, most people DON'T opt for suicide, whether they make a gesture toward it or never do.  The will to live is strong in humans.  Considering that death is final, I doubt "Let's Play Suicide!" will ever become a fashionable trend tongue

ME:  Most anti-euthanasia sentiments have come about from religious sentiment that persons who commit suicide go straight to hell. 

CLARK:  True, but as you might notice, I am not refrencing God in any way.   

*Yeah, I know you aren't.  But that's where many peoples' anti-euthanasia sentiments come from; whether or not you are religious, you, I, and everyone else has been influenced by religious sentiment either directly or indirectly, considering it is a very strong part of our societal environment -- especially in the USA.

Me:  Each person can and should decide for themselves, based on the particulars of what's going on in their life.

CLARK:  So you are okay with Mothers of 12 killing themselves becuase they are bored or just tired of being Mom? I fail to see the wisdom in that.

*I'd rather see a mother like that committing suicide rather than drowning her kids, like Andrea Yates did.  Besides, if this mother you refer to didn't have enough brains to quit having kids at Baby #5 -- or couldn't figure out how babies are conceived -- maybe the gene pool is better off without such a stupid person.  This would go for a father in the same situation as well.

ME:  So we should encourage people to suffer? 

CLARK:  No, i never even hinted at that.

*But if you disapprove of suicide and feel society should enforce its prevention, then you naturally would prefer to have people suffer.  I'm not insinuating that you are sadistic; however, it's either/or.

CLARK:  Are you implying our response should be, "oj, you feel bad? Well, go ahead and end it all so you won't feel bad anymore."

*Oh, give me a break!  OJ doesn't feel bad.  He's too busy golfing and banging his latest blond, white girlfriend to be out there "looking for the REAL killers [of Nicole and Ron]." 

ME:  People cannot be encouraged to kill themselves who don't want to. 

CLARK:  Yes, they can. We have an entire industry that encourages people to lose weight, not eat, to fit a body image that is unrealistic. People can, and are encouraged to do things that they don't neccessarily "want" to do. Who "wants" to go hungry? Peopl do it anyway though.

*No, they can't.  Death is final -- most people won't go that far.

ME:  Who are you to say this isn't so?

CLARK:  A loud mouth with more sense.   

*That's not a reason.  And I think I've got more sense than you.  smile

ME:  There's dignity of life and there's quality of life.  Personally, I'd rather be dead than live under Taliban-like rule. 

CLARK:  If you are dead, there is NO LIFE-

*Yeah, I do know that.

CLARK:  there can be no quality, there can be no dignity, there is only a dead corpse (which can be disposed of by the State!  ).

*Which is preferable to being gang raped, beaten for exposing my wrist accidentally {{gasp!!}}, living in a house with the windows blacked out, not being able to go outdoors without a male escort, and liable for execution if I so much as raise my arms to protect my face while my husband beats the living daylights out of me.

CLARK:  Apparently you have certain "standards" that you would live under- how is ending your life going to bring about those standards?

*The standards may not be brought about anyway.

ME:  Self-love and  self-preservation can be expressed in suicide. 

CLARK:  How exactly?

*I've already answered this [above].

ME:  I'd rather have the dignity of taking my own life than allow a group of persons [enemy] to take it from me.

CLARK:  If someone is intent on killing you and you beat them to the punch, they have still murdered you- they forced you to die.

*I'd rather it be at my own hand than at their hand.  That, to me, is an expression of self-love and dignity.

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#11 2002-07-09 13:53:07

clark
Member
Registered: 2001-09-20
Posts: 6,345

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

First we argue about the rights of the dead body, now we argue over wheter or not the living body has the right to make themselves become the dead body...     :0    tongue  I find I am learning, what exactly, I'm not sure yet...  wink

Suicide is ending the life of one's self, with foresight and intention.  It's NOT murder, because it is self-inflicted.  Murder is the ending of one's  life by ANOTHER.  Masturbation isn't rape, is it?

Good point. So, if we accept this specfic reasoning, we neccessarily must recognize the inherent right over self. Society is without recourse in establishing drug laws- what right do you or anyone have in determining what I choose to ingest? You do away with age restrictions for alcohol becuase of the same reason. We must disolve the current practice whereby doctor perscriptions must be obtained for medication- no one has the right to allow or dissalow what I choose to put in my body...
All laws regarding saftey compliance must be disolved, after all, we cannot allow anyone to impose any rules that affect how I use my body- in this case, wheter or not I choose to wear a seat belt or wear a helmet. Since a child is the ward of their parent, we can no longer instutire laws that force saftey standards onto manufacturers of childs stuff- Society has no right.

Welcome to your lovely world of Buyer Beware.

Oh wait, I forgot about the USDA- so much for regulating the food we eat- after all, who are you or anyone else to tell me what kind of food I eat. MMMMM.... E coli.

Hey, no more flight saftey standards- who are you to tell me what kind of plane I can fly in.

Is this really the platform that you wish to advocate? Masturbation isn't rape, but this logic you advocate fails.

*Try and establish that we DON'T have a right to commit suicide.

The taking of life is not a right we inherently posses, ever. It is the ONE right we have no claim to. Suicide is the taking of a life- even if it is at your own hands. Society exsists to protect life and ensure rights. How can you have a right that is diametricaly opposed to the very thing [society] which ensures your rights? If you were in a State of Nature, then fine- off yourself, but we are not.

ME:  "What is done to the self    [voluntary death] is different from murder [done to another, resulting in their involuntary death]."

CLARK:  "Why is it different? How is it different?

*Self-imposed versus other-imposed.

So two different reasons, but the same result somehow justify it? A man who shoots a thousand people who asked to be shot is better than a man who shot a thousand silent people?

CLARK:  Just becuase one you exercsie a "choice" does not make it okay.

*Okay or not okay -- by what standards?  The Bible?  Dear Abby's advice column?

Either you have a right to life, or you don't. That is the standard- the right to life, and contrary to what you might belive, you cannot legitametly give up a right.

CLARK:  Can I "choose" to be a slave?

*Yes.  So long as you don't force others to be a slave.

WOW, I'm stumped. We have the right to relinquish our rights?

Clark:  The act debases all life,

*It does?  How?

Because it establishes that sometimes it is okay to murder another individual.

CLARK:  "and brings into question the role of Society- it exsists to ensure and protect youe LIFE and rights. Are you proposing that we have a right to choose when Society acts in this capacity?"

*Darling, I'm looking at this from an INDIVIDUALISTIC point of view.

As an individual, you have the ability to do whatever you want- Society exsists to tell you what is and isn't acceptable in that range of things that you are capabale of doing. An individual can take their own life, true, but Society does not have to "allow" it. Society must act ALWAYS to be fair and equitable (read Social Contract)- irregardless of a single individual's desire.

I'd hang myself.  That would be   death with dignity, and would cheat the Inquisitors out of their "fun."

\

I would do the same- however, it would just be hastening my inevitable death which would still be cazused by the ones who imprisoned me- it is not suicide at this point. There is no dignity in death- death is a state of being- dignity is a subjective and irrelavant experience. What you would be escaping is the PAIN- that's all.

CLARK:  Then it is horrible. You can come up with a million "exceptions" that cry out for "mercy", but they are rationalizations.

*Is it rationalization or it is a REASON?

Rationalization. Either life is sacred or it isn't- which is it Cindy? What you are attempting to do is say that life is sacred except when we decide as individuals that we have had enough of life, then it is no longer sacred and so we are able to end life... Choose.

How would YOU tell these people they CANNOT kill themselves?

I would tell them that they can't kill themselves and if they try they will be commited and restrained from hurting themselves.

How can preventing people from committing suicide be enforced, and on what basis?

We can mitigate the occurence but we can never fully prevent. However, we do stop quite a few as it is now.

ME:  Settler Williams' request to die because of her horrible burns and the hideous deformities which will result seems more to me an an attempt at saving herself.

CLARK:  Ah, to save the village, we had to destroy the village. Good lesson.

*What does that statement have to do with the subject at hand?  Nothing.

I believe you misunderstand. You suggest that the only way for Settler Williams to "save" herself is to kill herself- thus I made my Destroy the village statement. I was pointing out the obvious absurdity of your statement. Killing yourself is not saving yourself- it is simply ending your life.

Do  you believe The State or The Society has a right to tell people they can't commit suicide?

Yes. It is inherent in the agreement between individual and society- society exsists to protect life.

*And what's so wrong with escaping pain?

Nothing, but suicide to escape pain is pretty final and it also infringes on the rest of your rights

If Settler Williams the burn victim knows she will experience excruciating, horrible pain after the pain meds run out -- and the next shipment from Earth won't arrive for another month -- what, should she allow to groan, writhe, scream, and cry out for relief?  That's cruel.

No, that's life. Next will be saying that deformed children really can't be enjoying their life all that much, let's do them a favor and spare them the pain...

Would YOU be willing to walk into her room, look at her and tell her, "We're sorry, Settler Williams, but you'll be out of pain medications in a few days and you'll just have to grin and bear it."  Yeah, right.

So then we should allow her to kill herself becuase WE have a hard time dealing with HER pain? Just because something is difficult to do or say dosen't mean it still shouldn't be said or still shouldn't be done- hell that's part of the Mars Society argument for Mars.  tongue

CLARK:  The only "rational" reason for suicide is to trade your life for another, or multiple others; i.e. jumping on a gernade- at that point it is an act of SACRIFICE, not suicide.

*Now you're talking about altruism.  You're going off-topic.

Actually I'm not- I was trying to undermine an anticipated argument- I was trying to disqualify the one "rational" act of suicide- just trying to beat you to the punch, not get us off tract. smile

ME:  There's death with dignity -- and then there's QUALITY OF LIFE.  I'd rather have quality of life.

CLARK:  What quality of life do you have if you are dead?

*There are things worse than death, Clark.  That's the point I'm trying to make.

I understand the point, but what QUALITY is there in death?

CLARK:  A person your children look up to, or admire? Is this really the type of example you want set?

*It won't be an example.  As I pointed out in my last post, most people DON'T opt for suicide, whether they make a gesture toward it or never   do.  The will to live is strong in humans.

Yes, the will is strong- however, why do you wish to undermine that? Maybe people don't opt for suicide NOW becuase of the oppoisition to it. There is a huge stigma involved with suicide, not only religious, but secular- you argue for removing this stigma and thus making it more acceptable for people to end their own life. As you and I have no doubt, if someone wants to kill themselves, there is very little we can actually do to stop that determination- however, we do not have to say that such acts are acceptable or even tolerable- which is what is at the heart of of what you argue for.

Considering that death is final, I doubt "Let's Play Suicide!" will ever become a fashionable trend

Tatoo's are pretty final... they are a fashion trend.

ME:  Most anti-euthanasia sentiments have come about from religious sentiment that persons who commit suicide go straight to hell. 

CLARK:  True, but as you might notice, I am not refrencing God in any way.   

*Yeah, I know you aren't.  But that's where many peoples' anti-euthanasia sentiments come from; whether or not you are religious, you, I, and everyone else has been influenced by religious sentiment either directly or indirectly, considering it is a very strong part of our societal environment -- especially in the USA.

And? tongue

*I'd rather see a mother like that committing suicide rather than drowning her kids, like Andrea Yates did.

As would I, however that is not a justification in and of itself.

*But if you disapprove of suicide and feel society should enforce its prevention, then you naturally would prefer to have people suffer.  I'm not  insinuating that you are sadistic; however, it's either/or.

No, it is not. I do not prefer people to suffer. I do not prefer murder. Just becuase I believe people should not kill themselves does not mean that I do not believe we should try to ease their suffering- I am only stating that i disagree and find it immpermissible that they would choose to end their suffering in a certain and very final way.

CLARK:  Are you implying our response should be, "oj, you feel bad? Well, go ahead and end it all so you won't feel bad anymore."

*Oh, give me a break!  OJ doesn't feel bad.  He's too busy golfing and banging his latest blond, white girlfriend to be out there "looking for the REAL killers [of Nicole and Ron]."

Sorry, typo- did not mean to say oj- i was trying to type "oh". It was a general statment that your argument suggests we should make to those who want to kill themselves.  big_smile

*No, they can't.  Death is final -- most people won't go that far.

And what do you base this bit of wisdom on? People starve themselves everyday, many to the point of death. People often go further than you imagine.

ME:  Who are you to say this isn't so?

CLARK:  A loud mouth with more sense.   

*That's not a reason.  And I think I've got more sense than you.

Perhaps. But I believe I do have you at least reconsidering... no?

CLARK:  Apparently you have certain "standards" that you would live under- how is ending your life going to bring about those standards?

*The standards may not be brought about anyway.

So then what purpose does your suicide then serve? None. It is a meaningless act- so much for your dignity. What dignity is there in a meaningless death?

ME:  I'd rather have the dignity of taking my own life than allow a group of persons [enemy] to take it from me.

CLARK:  If someone is intent on killing you and you beat them to the punch, they have still murdered you- they forced you to die.

*I'd rather it be at my own hand than at their hand.  That, to me, is an expression of self-love and dignity.

But this isn't suicide- this is murder- they force you into only one option- death. You will die irregardless of any action you take- so this dosen't apply.

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#12 2002-07-09 15:17:42

Canth
Member
Registered: 2002-04-21
Posts: 126

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

I agree with you totally clark. Human Life Has Intrinsic Value.

People cannot be encouraged to kill themselves who don't want to.

Have you heard about Okinawa in WWII, almost the entire population killed themselves when the americans took the island simply because Japanese culture said it was better to die than to be captured. They knew that they would not be subjected to atrocities, and yet they killed themselves, and in many cases their families. The allied POWs in japenese hands while horribly brutalized and often killed rarely killed themselves, they knewthey wouldsuffer a fate worse than death and yet chose to try to live. Beleive me if society condones suicide many many people will commit it. By the way even the Catholic Church condones suicide in the face of certain torture and death, they are one of the most conservative right to life groups out there.

Anyway there is no need to waste space and controversy on cyanide capsules for a mars mission. It is easy enough to inject your self with a fatal combination or overdose of drugs, or pop your suit helmet, or kill yourself with one of the many dangerous objects along for the trip.

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#13 2002-07-09 15:35:15

Palomar
Member
From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

Canth:  I agree with you totally clark. Human Life Has Intrinsic Value.

*Did Hitler's life have intrinsic value?  What about Jeffrey Dahmer -- did his life have intrinsic value?  Andrea Yates drowned her 5 little children -- does her life have intrinsic value?  More importantly -- how do you define "intrinsic value"?

People cannot be encouraged to kill themselves who don't want to.

Canth:  Have you heard about Okinawa in WWII, almost the entire population killed themselves when the americans took the island simply because Japanese culture said it was better to die than to be captured. They knew that they would not be subjected to atrocities, and yet they killed themselves, and in many cases their families.

*I'm not talking about ignorant, uneducated people following the commands of their leaders on a collective basis via collective submission.  I'm talking about an INDIVIDUAL making their own DECISION to commit suicide.

Canth:  The allied POWs in japenese hands while horribly brutalized and often killed rarely killed themselves, they knewthey wouldsuffer a fate worse than death and yet chose to try to live.

*Which proves my point that the will to live is strong in most humans, thus most will NOT opt for it, and thus it'll never become a fad or trend.

Canth:  Beleive me if society condones suicide many many people will commit it.

*If an isolated, propagandized society constantly presses the issue onto its people, they might very well kill themselves en masse for "the cause."  But that's not what I'm talking about; you're taking this out of context.  I'm speaking of individual decision coming about from the individual's desire.  I'm *not* talking about people committing suicide because they were told to do so.

Canth:  By the way even the Catholic Church condones suicide in the face of certain torture and death, they are one of the most conservative right to life groups out there.

*Interesting.

Canth:  Anyway there is no need to waste space and controversy on cyanide capsules for a mars mission.

*If you think this controversy is a waste of time and space you're certainly entitled to your opinion.  smile

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#14 2002-07-09 15:51:08

clark
Member
Registered: 2001-09-20
Posts: 6,345

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

A reply to Canth before me?! How rude.  big_smile

*Did Hitler's life have intrinsic value?  What about Jeffrey Dahmer -- did his life have intrinsic value?  Andrea Yates drowned her 5 little children -- does her life have intrinsic value?

Yes. Yes. And...Yes.

More importantly -- how do you define "intrinsic value"?

I know I shouldn't speak for Canth, but... life has "intrinsic value" based on the idea that the value is inherent in it's exsistence. Irregardless of how we may feel personally about certain people who are alive (or once alive)- LIFE itself has an inherent value that cannot be denied. If you deny that it has any inherent value or worth, then you neccessarily reduce the value of all life and make it arbitrary and meaningless. You point out human monsters, but does that in and of itself somehow diminish the value of life?

*I'm not talking about ignorant, uneducated people following the commands of their leaders on a collective basis via collective submission. I'm talking about an INDIVIDUAL making their own DECISION to commit suicide.

Even those "ignorant, uneducated people following the commands" had to make an individual decision to commit suicide. Canth gave a pretty good example of how accepting the "rationality" of suicide can foster a culture that encourages suicide.

*If an isolated, propagandized society constantly presses the issue onto its people, they might very well kill themselves en masse for "the cause."  But that's not what I'm talking about; you're taking this out of context.  I'm speaking of individual decision coming about from the individual's desire.

No, you are not talking about that Cindy. You are talking about codifiying the act of killing oneself as a right protected by law. How as an individual are you PREVENTED from killing yourself? Maybe you are prevented from killing yourself EASILY, but no one can truly stop you. You are suggesting that we HELP indiviuals to take their own life. It's silly.

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#15 2002-07-09 16:01:10

Phobos
Member
Registered: 2002-01-02
Posts: 1,103

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

If someone wanted to commit suicide on Mars they'd die quickly by just doing something like taking their helmet off while outside.  The intense cold and lack of pressure would probably do you in just as fast as a cyanide pill.


To achieve the impossible you must attempt the absurd

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#16 2002-07-09 16:11:04

Palomar
Member
From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

CLARK:  You point out human monsters, but does that in and of itself somehow diminish the value of life?

*Maybe you should ask their victims that.  Whoops, can't -- their lives were taken forcibly from them by another, against their will.

ME:  I'm not talking about ignorant, uneducated people following the commands of their leaders on a collective basis via collective submission. I'm talking about an INDIVIDUAL making their own DECISION to commit suicide.

CLARK:  Even those "ignorant, uneducated people following the commands" had to make an individual decision to commit suicide.

*Did they?  You're telling me that ignorant, brainwashed people committing suicide upon command is the same as Settler Williams wanting to die because she's suffered horrible burns, will run out of pain medications in a week, the next package is a month away, and she can't abide the thought of being so horribly disfigured on top of the excruciating pain she will suffer for weeks?  I've answered your questions Clark...now answer some of mine, please.  I've given you specific situations, i.e. chosing being tortured and burned to death during the Inquisition of the 1500s versus hanging one's self to avoid it, and you didn't answer.  How would you tell Settler Williams she CANNOT take that cyanide pill, you or Society forbid it, etc., etc.?  You didn't answer that, either.

ME:  If an isolated, propagandized society constantly presses the issue onto its people, they might very well kill themselves en masse for "the cause."  But that's not what I'm talking about; you're taking this out of context.  I'm speaking of individual decision coming about from the individual's desire.

CLARK:  No, you are not talking about that Cindy. You are talking about codifiying the act of killing oneself as a right protected by law.

*And you are talking about legally denying a person their right to die.

CLARK:  How as an individual are you PREVENTED from killing yourself?

*Why should I be prevented from acting upon my own will, when my decision involves only ME?

CLARK:  Maybe you are prevented from killing yourself EASILY, but no one can truly stop you.

*Right.  So what are we arguing about?

CLARK:  You are suggesting that we HELP indiviuals to take their own life. It's silly.

*And you are suggesting that persons be made to suffer rather than trust they have enough brains, awareness, or whatever to make their own decision.  It's silly.

I'm beginning to wonder if you think individuals have any rights whatsoever.

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#17 2002-07-09 18:17:25

Phobos
Member
Registered: 2002-01-02
Posts: 1,103

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

Should spacesuits be designed with little death pill dispensers that will deliver the desired quantity to an astronaut that has become deranged with pain and/or suicidal tendencies?  After all, you couldn't just flip the visor open to pop the pill in your mouth.  And an astronaut out in the field that wanted to die could probably do so relatively fast by just removing their helmet and taking in that fresh, frigid, and barely pressurized co2.  I get a gut feeling that taking suicide pills along on the mission will create more political problems than it's worth.  If someone wants to kill themselves that badly, there's always the airlock! No need to take the extra mass along!


To achieve the impossible you must attempt the absurd

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#18 2002-07-09 19:41:48

C M Edwards
Member
From: Lake Charles LA USA
Registered: 2002-04-29
Posts: 1,012

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

I agree, Phobos.

If I may be morbid for a minute:

I recall reading something written by an astronaut.  He stated that not only were the legendary suicide pills in space of the urban legendary variety, but if you wanted to kill yourself in space, screwing up the oxygen partial pressure is a very simple, relatively fast and above all _painless_ way to do it.  Most of the discomfort people suffer when dying of suffocation by the traditional methods comes from increasing the carbon dioxide, not taking away the oxygen. 

Thanks for your time.

CME


"We go big, or we don't go."  - GCNRevenger

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#19 2002-07-09 21:46:40

Canth
Member
Registered: 2002-04-21
Posts: 126

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

Dying by popping a helmet or airlock is while a tad bit gruesome due to bloating etc. virtually instant and if there is any pain it is extremely short lived (seconds at the most). Cyanide pills are in fact probobly more gruesome and disturbing to the crew members as well as more painful to the suicidee.

I personally beleive that the right to die extends only to those who are being kept alive by sheer force and who are in extreme pain with almost 0 chance of long term recovery. In this case they may forgo treatments which prolong their pain, no more. For instance if someone is dying of cancer and is on a resporator they or if they are unable their relatives may deside to have them taken off the resporator as it is a futile gesture which only prolongs their pain. They may not however be given something whose sole purpose is to kill them. A person who has sustained a wound which will disfigure or maim them but who has a chance of recovery cannot make this choice no matter how horrible or worthless they feel at the time.

Human Life Has Intrinsic Value applies to every one. If it didn't the value wouldn't be intrinsic would it?

By the way, many of the disgruntled homicidal maniacs who go on killing sprees do kill themselves. They aren't homicidal because they want to kill themselves. They are homicidal because they want to kill themselves and go out with a bang so they will be remembered. Condoning suicide will not change the fact that they want to make a mark.

Also Japanese samuri culture condones suicide for reasons beside avoiding capture, in fact I am pretty sure any reason is sufficient. I beleive that the ritual suicide by self disembowelment is relativly common among the well educated samuri class. (Samuri are like the knights and over class in fuedal europe.) During WWII the japanese government tried, effectivly, to extend the samuri code to the common folk. Hence the kamakazi pilots and virtual total lack of uninjured japanese POWs captured. Even today suicide is somewhat more accepted in Japan. Hence the relativly large numbers of preadolscents who killed themselves after the deaths of their ELECTRONIC pets. I am sorry you cannot choose to die, it is not your right. You will recall in the list that the right to life comes before that to liberty and the pursuit of happieness (or property if you prefer). That is as it should be, a dead person has been denied all these rights for they are not alive they they are at liberty to do nothing, happieness is impossible, and dead people can'town anything.

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#20 2002-07-10 08:01:04

clark
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Registered: 2001-09-20
Posts: 6,345

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

That is as it should be, a dead person has been denied all these rights for they are not alive they they are at liberty to do nothing, happieness is impossible, and dead people can'town anything.

Well said Canth.

CLARK:  You point out human monsters, but does that in and of itself somehow diminish the value of life?

*Maybe you should ask their victims that.  Whoops, can't -- their lives were taken forcibly from them by another, against their will.

Again, how does their individual action diminish the value of their lives? They are alive, and what they choose to do is morally reprehensible, it does not somehow disqualify, or somehow reduce the inherent value of life. Either life has value which is absolute, or it dosen't. If life dosen't have an absolute value (as you are suggesting now), then there is no need to respect ANY life since any value would be arbitrary. This establishes that the WORTH of a life can be determined- measured. Can it?

*Did they?  You're telling me that ignorant, brainwashed people committing suicide upon command is the same as Settler Williams wanting to  die because she's suffered horrible burns, will run out of pain medications in a week, the next package is a month away, and she can't abidethe thought of being so horribly disfigured on top of the excruciating pain she will suffer for weeks?

YES! They are exactly the same. Both situations the people are taking their lives, the only difference is that you are willing to accept one reason for suicide but not another- you are using your PERSONAL value system to determine which one is acceptable and which one is not. You can't do that with your argument. Either the right to die is universal and unabridged, which means ANY reason that people want to die is justifiable, or it is not. YOU are the one that is stating that the right to die is universal and unabridged- YOU are the one who is in effect CONDONING the action of the "ignorant, brainwashed people". It's actually funny in a way.  ???

I've given you specific situations, i.e. chosing being tortured and burned to death during the Inquisition of the 1500s versus hanging one's self to avoid it, and you didn't answer.

Actuially, I believe I did. I said I would hang myself as well- but in that instance you describe, I am being murdered anyway- me taking my own life is not an act of suicide, it is an act of murder on the part of those who would soon kill me. If my only option is death becuase SOMEONE else has put me in that situation, and not of my choosing, then it is murder on their part, not mine. I told you then, as I am telling you now, your example does not apply.

How would you tell Settler Williams she CANNOT take that cyanide pill, you or Society forbid it, etc., etc.?  You didn't answer that, either.

I honestly try to answer every question- as I thought I answered this one. I would tell her NO. Just becuase something is hard to say or do does not mean we shouldn't say or do it... I said this before... remember, Mars Argument predicated on this philosphy.... can I get a witness smile

CLARK:  No, you are not talking about that Cindy. You are talking about codifiying the act of killing oneself as a right protected by law.

*And you are talking about legally denying a person their right to die.

No, I am talking about NOT legally allowing someone to murder themselves. Murder is an act against the State- the crime when prosecuted is always brought by the State. Murder is an affront to society. You are asking us to see the sense in codifying into law the right to murder oneself as an unalienable and protected right. This measn that police and paramedics would be REQUIRED by law to not interfere with anyone who is trying to kill themselves- in fact the police would be required to prevent anyone from interferring with this right. Imagine a world where police do crowd control while they wait for someone to jump- instead of trying to save them. That's the world you allow with this argument Cindy.

CLARK:  How as an individual are you PREVENTED from killing yourself?

*Why should I be prevented from acting upon my own will, when my decision involves only ME?

So now we go back to my previous point- drug laws, alcohol restrictions, prostution laws, food quality laws, saftey laws, standards for almost anything all go out the window. How is this sensible and logical?

Here is an example for you. We establish the "right to die at ones choosing"- A Parent has a child, which makes them executor of the child until they are 18. The child has a deformity of some sort- maybe a hair lip. The Parent, unable to afford the cost of "fixing" the cosmetic abnormality is worried that their child will have a horrible and painful life. Deciding not to put the child through such obvious agony, she has the child euthanized. All of which would be legal, since the parent is exercising the right of the child- as is the Parent's right. Your thoughts Cindy?

CLARK:  Maybe you are prevented from killing yourself EASILY, but no one can truly stop you.

*Right.  So what are we arguing about?

Wheter or not there should be a law which guareentes that you are able to exercise this right at anytime. I contend that no such law should be made.

CLARK:  You are suggesting that we HELP indiviuals to take their own life. It's silly.
*And you are suggesting that persons be made to suffer rather than trust they have enough brains, awareness, or whatever to make their own  decision.  It's silly.

No, I am in no way suggesting that they be MADE to suffer- I am simply stating that no one in their right mind chooses to die. If they do choose death, obviously something is "wrong" with them. If anything, I am suggesting we don't give up on people, and that people don't give up.

I personally beleive that the right to die extends only to those who are being kept alive by sheer force and who are in extreme pain with almost0 chance of long term recovery.

But even here there is no "right to die" being exercised. The only thing that is occuring is that life extending procedures are no longer being used to prolong the life. If your body is unable to support itself, then it is a natural death, and their is nothing wrong with that.

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#21 2002-07-10 08:52:38

Canth
Member
Registered: 2002-04-21
Posts: 126

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

Quote: I personally beleive that the right to die extends only to those who are being kept alive by sheer force and who are in extreme pain with almost 0 chance of long term recovery.

But even here there is no "right to die" being exercised. The only thing that is occuring is that life extending procedures are no longer being used to prolong the life. If your body is unable to support itself, then it is a natural death, and their is nothing wrong with that.

Totally agree with you clark.

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#22 2002-07-10 09:02:49

Palomar
Member
From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

CLARK:  Again, how does their individual action diminish the value of their lives?

*How does/did the individual actions of these people [Hitler, Dahmer, and Yates] INCREASE the value of their lives?

CLARK:  They are alive,and what they choose to do is morally reprehensible, it does not somehow disqualify, or somehow reduce the inherent value of life. Either life has value which is absolute, or it dosen't.

*Interesting.  I thought you didn't believe in "absolutes" Clark.  You're asking me to consider the lives of Hitler, Dahmer, and Yates as being equally worthy as, say, the lives of George Washington, Mother Theresa, and Princess Diana.  Sorry, can't do it.

CLARK:  If life dosen't have an absolute value (as you are suggesting now), then there is no need to respect ANY life since any value would be arbitrary. This establishes that the WORTH of a life can be determined- measured. Can it?

*You are taking what I've been say WAY out of context.

ME:  Did they?  You're telling me that ignorant, brainwashed people committing suicide upon command is the same as Settler Williams wanting to  die because she's suffered horrible burns, will run out of pain medications in a week, the next package is a month away, and she can't abidethe thought of being so horribly disfigured on top of the excruciating pain she will suffer for weeks? 

CLARK:  YES! They are exactly the same.

*No, they are not.  Settler Williams makes a personal, private decision based on an incident which has happened to her alone.  It is *her* decision, which *she alone* makes for herself, in the privacy of her mind and by her own will.  No one is telling her to kill herself, she's not been propagandized into believing some altruistic lie that she must sacrifice herself for "the cause" and will obey like a sheep the commands of another to dispose of her life.  There is a difference here -- you just don't want to see it.

CLARK:  You are using your PERSONAL value system to determine which one is acceptable and which one is not.

*I'm using my personal value system in conjunction with common sense.  You are bringing your own personal value system in this discussion as well.

CLARK:  Either the right to die is universal and unabridged,
which means ANY reason that people want to die is justifiable, or it is not. YOU are the one that is stating that the right to die is universal and unabridged- YOU are the one who is in effect CONDONING the action of the "ignorant, brainwashed people". It's actually funny in a way. 

*No, I'm not.  Either you're not comprehending what I'm saying, or you don't want to. 

ME:  I've given you specific situations, i.e. chosing being tortured and burned to death during the Inquisition of the 1500s versus hanging one's self to avoid it, and you didn't answer. 

CLARK:  Actuially, I believe I did. I said I would hang myself as well- but in that instance you describe, I am being murdered anyway- me taking my own life is not an act of suicide, it is an act of murder on the part of those who would soon kill me. If my only option is death becuase SOMEONE else has put me in that situation, and not of my choosing, then it is murder on their part, not mine. I told you then, as I am telling you now, your example does not apply.

*Yes, my example does apply.  You can choose to place yourself at the mercy of others while they torment you to death and get their thrills from it -OR-  you can take your own life into your own hands and die with pride and self-respect, knowing you've cheated them of their desire to degrade and humiliate you, and that your self-induced death has more dignity, less pain, etc. 

CLARK:  You are asking us to see the sense in codifying into law the right to murder oneself as an unalienable and protected right. This measn that police and paramedics would be REQUIRED by law to not interfere with anyone who is trying to kill themselves- in fact the police would be required to prevent anyone from interferring with this right. Imagine a world where police do crowd control while they wait for someone to jump- instead of trying to save them. That's the world you allow with this argument Cindy.

*You're exaggerating.  The Big Medical Corporate Industry bilks insurance companies and private individuals for zillions of dollars to keep suffering people alive and preventing themselves from taking their own lives.  They stand by and watch the cash flowing in, getting rich off the sufferings of others -- is this worse than crowds yelling for someone to jump?  Besides, I DIDN'T say people SHOULDN'T try to be talked out of jumping or killing themselves.  I'm not in favor of people being ENCOURAGED to kill themselves.  I'm simply saying that it is the right of the individual.

CLARK:  How as an individual are you PREVENTED from killing yourself?

ME:  Why should I be prevented from acting upon my own will, when my decision involves only ME?

CLARK:  So now we go back to my previous point- drug laws, alcohol restrictions, prostution laws, food quality laws, saftey laws, standards for almost anything all go out the window. How is this sensible and logical?

*You're running with the argument again.  The discussion started with the right of an individual to die.  People also have the right to be protected from injury and death.

CLARK:  Here is an example for you. We establish the "right to die at ones choosing"- A Parent has a child, which makes them executor of the child until they are 18. The child has a deformity of some sort- maybe a hair lip. The Parent, unable to afford the cost of "fixing" the cosmetic abnormality is worried that their child will have a horrible and painful life. Deciding not to put the child through such obvious agony, she has the child euthanized. All of which would be legal, since the parent is exercising the right of the child- as is the Parent's right. Your thoughts Cindy?

*You're injecting an element into this discuss which doesn't belong here.  I'm not speaking of people deciding death for others -- I'm speaking of the individual's own right to die.

ME:  And you are suggesting that persons be made to suffer rather than trust they have enough brains, awareness, or whatever to make their own  decision.  It's silly.

CLARK:  No, I am in no way suggesting that they be MADE to suffer-

*Yes, indirectly, you are.

CLARK:  I am simply stating that no one in their right mind chooses to die.

*By what standards do you determine "in their right mind"?

CLARK:  If they do choose death, obviously something is "wrong" with them.

*Define "wrong" in this context.  Wrong by what standards -- yours?  The Bible's?  Dear Abby's advice column?  You've said there are no absolutes.  How can it be wrong to you?  And why put the word WRONG in quotation marks, as you have?  Are you unsure you think it's wrong?

I'll give you the last word on this Clark.  I'm of the impression that either you cannot understand my viewpoint, or you don't want to; probably the latter.  You've stated before at the message boards that there are no absolutes (even though I don't recall my ever having said there ARE absolutes), but this doesn't prevent you from then using the word "absolute" to assist you in your argument or to try and undermine the argument of your opponent.  You can't have it both ways, darling.  You also interject new elements into the argument which are not, IMO, related to the discussion at hand.  Perhaps this is a diversionary tactic on your part, I don't know.

I've made my viewpoints clear enough.  Now you can have the last word.  smile

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#23 2002-07-10 09:28:20

clark
Member
Registered: 2001-09-20
Posts: 6,345

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

*How does/did the individual actions of these people [Hitler, Dahmer, and Yates] INCREASE the value of their lives?


LOL- There is no way to INCREASE the value of a life- the value is absolute- it is inherent and unchangable. You are the one suggesting that it has some slide rule value, which I cannot accept. Life either has an absolute value, or it dosen't. If it dosen't then the value assigned is arbitrary and subjective (remeber THAT discussion?) and renders the whole concept of respecting life as meaningless. So I ask you again to either establsish how the value of life can change, how it can be measured, and how it is determined... OBJECTIVELY. The only OBJECTIVE measure is to say that life is inherently valuable- it's an either/or.

*Interesting.  I thought you didn't believe in "absolutes" Clark.  You're asking me to consider the lives of Hitler, Dahmer, and Yates as being equally worthy as, say, the lives of George Washington, Mother Theresa, and Princess Diana.  Sorry, can't do it.

Morality and ethics are not absolutes- and my personal values hold that the value of human life itself, irregardless of how I may feel about anybody personaly (because that is subjective), is the same for everyone. If you say it isn't, then how do you objectively determine what someone's worth is? It can't be done, so the only option is to either accept the inherent value of life, or reject it, rendering ANY value arbitrary and meaningless. I'm sorry you can't accept the inherent value of all human life- I think you are a poorer person for it.  ???

CLARK:  If life dosen't have an absolute value (as you are suggesting now), then there is no need to respect ANY life since any value would be  arbitrary. This establishes that the WORTH of a life can be determined- measured. Can it?

  *You are taking what I've been say WAY out of context.

Not really, I am following your argument to it's logical conclusion. What I said is the end result of accepting your argument. How do we determine the value of any life if we hold that the value is not absolute? How do we do so objectively?

*No, they are not.  Settler Williams makes a personal, private decision based on an incident which has happened to her alone .

What are the ignorant uneducated people doing then? Are they not still making that final decision based on an "incident" (invasion by an enemy) and are they not still doing it alone- death is all about yourself afterall, when all is said and done.

It is *her*  decision, which *she alone* makes for herself, in the privacy of her mind and by her own will.

Based on the situation she fouind herself in. Each of those uneducated people are doing the same thing. The only difference is you are able to RATIONALIZE one action as acceptable, and the other as not- you are RATIONALIZING becuase both are equal acts, both result in death- there is no difference between the acts other than what you "perceive" in your own mind- which is based on your personal value system.

No one is telling her to kill herself, she's not   been propagandized into believing some altruistic lie that she must sacrifice herself for "the cause" and will obey like a sheep the commands of    another to dispose of her life.

She is led to believe that there willbe no escape from the pain. It dosen't matter if people are "following orders" to kill themseleves- they still choose to follow those orders- they are not forced to follow, which means their actions are EXACTLY equal to the Settler. It's you who refuse to see the arbitrary manner in which you have judged to equal actions.

CLARK:  You are using your PERSONAL value system to determine which one is acceptable and which one is not.

*I'm using the value system of common sense.

Common sense implies everyone shares the same "sense". The fact that people have different views, and different course of action for the same problems demonstrates the fallacy in believing in "common sense". Common sense is subjective and meaningless.

*No, I'm not.  Either you're not comprehending what I'm saying, or you don't want to.

No, I understand all to well, and I have seen so many missed opportunities on your part to prove some valid points. However, it is you who fail to address many of the fundamnetal problems with your argument- it is you who fails to demonstrate how what you say makes sense given the other issues raised by accepting your argument. I keep asking the same questions, but get no direct reply.

*Yes, my example does apply.  You can choose to place yourself at the mercy of others while they torment you to death and get their thrills from it -OR-  you can take your own life into your own hands and die with pride and self-respect, knowing you've cheated them of their desire to degrade and humiliate you, and that your self-induced death has more dignity, less pain, etc.

It dosen't apply becuase your personal will has been violated and will forever violated with complete certainty. It is in this case that you will not be killing yourself- that has already been done, it is only a matter of them getting around to the deed. An innocent man convicted and sentenced to death who kills himself is not commiting suicide, he is preventing others from having the opportunity to murder himself. He protects allof his rights by ending his tormenters ability to affect any of his rights. It is a justifiable and legitimate action that falls outside of the scope of this discussion.

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#24 2002-07-10 09:48:22

clark
Member
Registered: 2001-09-20
Posts: 6,345

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

*How does/did the individual actions of these people [Hitler, Dahmer, and Yates] INCREASE the value of their lives?


LOL- There is no way to INCREASE the value of a life- the value is absolute- it is inherent and unchangable. You are the one suggesting that it has some slide rule value, which I cannot accept. Life either has an absolute value, or it dosen't. If it dosen't then the value assigned is arbitrary and subjective (remeber THAT discussion?) and renders the whole concept of respecting life as meaningless. So I ask you again to either establsish how the value of life can change, how it can be measured, and how it is determined... OBJECTIVELY. The only OBJECTIVE measure is to say that life is inherently valuable- it's an either/or.

*Interesting.  I thought you didn't believe in "absolutes" Clark.  You're asking me to consider the lives of Hitler, Dahmer, and Yates as being equally worthy as, say, the lives of George Washington, Mother Theresa, and Princess Diana.  Sorry, can't do it.

Morality and ethics are not absolutes- and my personal values hold that the value of human life itself, irregardless of how I may feel about anybody personaly (because that is subjective), is the same for everyone. If you say it isn't, then how do you objectively determine what someone's worth is? It can't be done, so the only option is to either accept the inherent value of life, or reject it, rendering ANY value arbitrary and meaningless. I'm sorry you can't accept the inherent value of all human life- I think you are a poorer person for it.  ???

CLARK:  If life dosen't have an absolute value (as you are suggesting now), then there is no need to respect ANY life since any value would be  arbitrary. This establishes that the WORTH of a life can be determined- measured. Can it?

  *You are taking what I've been say WAY out of context.

Not really, I am following your argument to it's logical conclusion. What I said is the end result of accepting your argument. How do we determine the value of any life if we hold that the value is not absolute? How do we do so objectively?

*No, they are not.  Settler Williams makes a personal, private decision based on an incident which has happened to her alone .

What are the ignorant uneducated people doing then? Are they not still making that final decision based on an "incident" (invasion by an enemy) and are they not still doing it alone- death is all about yourself afterall, when all is said and done.

It is *her*  decision, which *she alone* makes for herself, in the privacy of her mind and by her own will.

Based on the situation she fouind herself in. Each of those uneducated people are doing the same thing. The only difference is you are able to RATIONALIZE one action as acceptable, and the other as not- you are RATIONALIZING becuase both are equal acts, both result in death- there is no difference between the acts other than what you "perceive" in your own mind- which is based on your personal value system.

No one is telling her to kill herself, she's not   been propagandized into believing some altruistic lie that she must sacrifice herself for "the cause" and will obey like a sheep the commands of    another to dispose of her life.

She is led to believe that there willbe no escape from the pain. It dosen't matter if people are "following orders" to kill themseleves- they still choose to follow those orders- they are not forced to follow, which means their actions are EXACTLY equal to the Settler. It's you who refuse to see the arbitrary manner in which you have judged to equal actions.

CLARK:  You are using your PERSONAL value system to determine which one is acceptable and which one is not.

*I'm using the value system of common sense.

Common sense implies everyone shares the same "sense". The fact that people have different views, and different course of action for the same problems demonstrates the fallacy in believing in "common sense". Common sense is subjective and meaningless.

*No, I'm not.  Either you're not comprehending what I'm saying, or you don't want to.

No, I understand all to well, and I have seen so many missed opportunities on your part to prove some valid points. However, it is you who fail to address many of the fundamnetal problems with your argument- it is you who fails to demonstrate how what you say makes sense given the other issues raised by accepting your argument. I keep asking the same questions, but get no direct reply.

*Yes, my example does apply.  You can choose to place yourself at the mercy of others while they torment you to death and get their thrills from it -OR-  you can take your own life into your own hands and die with pride and self-respect, knowing you've cheated them of their desire to degrade and humiliate you, and that your self-induced death has more dignity, less pain, etc.

It dosen't apply becuase your personal will has been violated and will forever violated with complete certainty. It is in this case that you will not be killing yourself- that has already been done, it is only a matter of them getting around to the deed. An innocent man convicted and sentenced to death who kills himself is not commiting suicide, he is preventing others from having the opportunity to murder himself. He protects allof his rights by ending his tormenters ability to affect any of his rights. It is a justifiable and legitimate action that falls outside of the scope of this discussion.

Besides, I DIDN'T say people SHOULDN'T try to be talked out of  jumping or killing themselves.  I'm not in favor of people being ENCOURAGED to kill themselves.  I'm simply saying that it is the right of the individual.

Ahhh, but trying to talk someone out of killing themselves is obstructing their universal right to kill themselves- the police would be compelled to prevent that the same way that they are compelled to protect KKK marching peacably down a street. Is that what you want?

*You're running with the argument again.  The discussion started with the right of an individual to die.  People also have the right to be protected from injury and death.

But they are inextrably connected. If people have a right to be protected from injury and death, how exactly can they have a right to death by their own injury? Either it is one or the other.

The obvious conclusion is that we would have a right to be protected from injury and death, except when we choose otherwise... well any law that protects me from injury or death is an infringment on this right, becuase at any time I may wish to be exsposed to injury and death- so we cannot legitametly establsih laws that protect us. See, silly.

*It's not the parent's life, thus they have no right to choose for the child.  It is the INDIVIDUAL'S OWN right to die or not.  The parents have no    right in this regard, and now you're interjecting an element into this discussion which doesn't belong here.

No, it does belong here becuase your argument must be looked at from all sides, including this one (sorry if it makes you uncomfortable). If it is an individuals own right, for even a child, then what right does a parent have to make ANY decision for their child? How can they legitametly decide what treatment to give a child- anything they decide is an infringment on their being. You need to deal with this if you expect yur argument to be taken seriously. Can a child of 8 decide that they wish to die? At what age can they express this right? If a child is in a coma, can no one decide wheter or not the child should be euthanized?  After all, it is an INDIVIDUALS OWN right (your words).

*Yes, indirectly, you are. [that people have to suffer]

No, it is an unfortunate consquence of my decisions, but again, if people wish to die, they will find a way to do it- I see no valid reason to codify this as a right in law.

*By what standards do you determine "in their right mind"?

If their actions make sense based on "the norm" or a logical reason. Imperfect, but I am human.

Ending your life becuase you feel you are ugly is not logical, and not the norm. Ending your life becuase you are in pain, or will be in pain forever can be considered logical, but far from the norm. Many people live with pain everyday, and ending your life prevents any alternative to easing the pain- or even any possibility in the future.

*Define "wrong" in this context.  Wrong by what standards -- yours?  The Bible's?  Dear Abby's advice column?  You've said there are no   absolutes.  How can it be wrong to you?  And why put the word WRONG in quotation marks, as you have?  Are you unsure you think it's wrong?

Murder of a human life is wrong becuase it violates the inherent value of life. This is not the bible, but it is reflected in ALL religious and philosphical texts (enlightened at least). Life has worth, value- the opposite of life is non-life- there is no value in that, no possibility of worth.

I have said their are no absolutes, and there are not- no absolute value systems- no absolute way to evaluate action. Life though is not a "value" in an of itself. Life is a thing, an object if you will, that has to have an absolute value- to accept otherwise is to reduce Life to an arbitray action with arbitrary and meaningless worth. I reject that.

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#25 2002-07-10 10:05:41

Palomar
Member
From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Unpleasantries - Macabre business --

I'd like to address the following:

CLARK:  I'm sorry you can't accept the inherent value of all human life- I think you are a poorer person for it.   

*How can I be a "poorer person" for my views?  This statement is made by you, a man who believes all is subjective.  How can you make this judgment of me, when you speak of "inherent value" in the next breath?  Don't my opinions have equal and inherent values to yours?  If all is subjective, as you insist, then your opinions and viewpoints are no better than mine -- so how, then, can you consider me a "poorer person" for my views?  What's the difference between saying someone is a "poorer person" for their views and saying Hitler's life was less valuable than that of Mother Theresa's?  It's the same sort of value judgment.  You said, "LOL- There is no way to INCREASE the value of a life- the value is absolute."  But yet you've said more than once at this message board that there are no absolutes.  Following your own logic, then, I cannot be a "poorer person" for my views because all views and opinions are of equal inherent worth.

Frankly, I do think you are a poorer person for not understanding -- or not wanting to understand, whatever the case may be -- the difference between Settler Williams the Burn Victim [Individual Choice] versus a group of people who will throw their lives away because they've been conditioned, brainwashed, and propagandized to do so [Group Think]. 

CLARK:  How do we determine the value of any life if we hold that the value is not absolute?

*I've never claimed there are absolutes -- you are the one who keeps using that word.  You believe everything is subjective, so how can your question be answered to your satisfaction?

CLARK:  I keep asking the same questions, but get no direct reply.

*You've gotten direct replies to your questions.  You simply don't want to accept my answers as being my answers because you disagree with them.

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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