Sir David Attenborough says he supports assisted suicide and would consider it 339



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It’s something not many of us want to think about but there are some who do – the possibility of assisted suicide/euthanasia to end suffering.

There’s been much debate about the ethics of euthanasia in the last few years especially, and now celebrities are putting their faces to the cause.

One of the more unlikely supporters of assisted suicide is Sir David Attenborough, though he has one stipulation: he only backs it if the problems of misuse could be solved.

The wildlife presenter spoke to BBC Radio 4, and he said he himself would want assistance to commit suicide if he was “really having a wretched life”.

In England, British MPs rejected a Bill to introduce assisted suicide, with concerns being raised over the potential for misuse, reports The Christian Institute.

Speaking to the Costing the Earth programme, Sir David said that the issues were “very complicated” and involved philosophical and medical questions.

Sir David told presenter Tom Heap: “I suppose I do really, but if you could solve all the problems of dealing with the misuse of such a right”.

“When you see poor people, poor in the sense of having some wretched disease, pleading for their lives to be brought to an end… It’s difficult to think that they don’t deserve that right today,” he said.

The veteran broadcaster also said he had concerns about the world’s growing population. Sir David said that families should stop having excessive numbers of children and branded the Catholic church’s stance on contraception an “extraordinary blind spot”.

A spokesman for Care Not Killing said: “I think it’s sad that such a much loved figure would make comments like that, but he has clearly recognised that there are very real dangers with changing the laws around assisted suicide and euthanasia”.

The debate in general raises many questions, and some believe having the option to end their suffering would be too tempting and instead they should be asking the government to make life more dignified instead of death.

Tell us your thoughts about Sir David Attenborough’s stance below.


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  1. I honestly believe that to ask another person to assist you in dying is too much. I understand why, of course I do. I sincerely hope that I am never in a position of wanting another person to assist in my dying. Other than pain relief and their company should I feel the need.

  2. No man or woman has studied life and indeed the reality of death on this planet as Sir David has. His views reflect a life time of observation and experience. A wisdom born of life itself.

  3. Agree..can sum1 explain wots diff wen life support is switched off?

    3 REPLY
    • Life support is machines working to keep alive a body that would die without them, therefore that person is, in essence, technically dead. Whereas the subject under discussion is, can we take way life from a person, alive, but dying, either in pain, or in unacceptable circumstances?

    • Mary Campagnolo Not take life away, but assist them to end it because they wish it, and not face criminal charges. That is not “taking away” at all….. let’s be accurate here.

  4. To me it’s a no brainer. However any legislation around it needs to be very carefully and thoughtfully drafted to avoid misuse. One of my concerns with the language being used about us seniors of late is if it became legal there may be a dollar cap put on medical care. You’ve reached your $ limit, end it or suffer the consequences. We are after all robbing the young of houses, costing too much in pensions, going to the doctor too often and generally seem to be a blight on society.

    2 REPLY
    • Barbara , its the thin end of the wedge , if you look at everything it starts off seeming a good idea but gets expanded to something that was not the original intension , but if you only want your kids to be allowed to live for a certain time then go ahead and vote for it , all i can say that would be a very foolish idea , but the choice is of course yours , close the door ,or insert a thin wedge .

    • Robert I watched my mother die from bone cancer, bones breaking because there was nothing left to hold them together. Pain medication helped for a long while but their came a point where the medical benefits fund would not support keeping her in hospital and she was moved to a nursing home. It was cruelty beyond measure and before it all got this bad she had expressed a clear desire to end her life. Nobody who asks to escape such suffering should be denied that right, but it is indeed a slippery slope and needs very well thought out and written legislation around it.

  5. I totally agree with Sir David, he is an intelligent man and he understand what Politicians don’t. That we do not want to suffer in pain only to die anyway. Sadly there is to much religion involved with our Politics, and that dictates many of our laws. they need to listen to the people instead of the Church

    5 REPLY
  6. I agree only if the quality of life is gone, as in the later stages of terminal illness.

  7. He is right and it is up to Boomers now to push this issue because we will be the next genration to suffer and die in pain

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