September 4, 2012

Choosing death

Is the right to die part of human freedom and the right of choice?

Tony Nicklinson, a 58-year-old UK citizen who suffered complete paralysis for seven years after a stroke, went on a hunger strike and died after losing a legal bid to end his life. Nicklinson’s family has since started a campaign on Twitter to raise awareness and support for assisted suicide and euthanasia.

His case has sparked a public debate on the methods and ethics of assisted suicide. Many who oppose euthanasia do so out of religious conviction, viewing it as a form of suicide. Those who support euthanasia argue that death is private and people have a right to die as much as they have a right to live.

In this episode of The Stream, we speak to Abdulaziz Sachedina, Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Virginia and Penney Lewis, Professor of Law at King’s College London. Members of the Stream community also join us via Google+.

What do you think? Should assisted suicide be legal? Send us your thoughts and comments on Facebook or Twitter using #AJStream.