Yearning for the old days
No wonder the children of today’s world have changed.
Whatever happened to the open-wood fires and other simple things in life like reading a very nice book, a skipping rope, and toasting scones over the open fire in the evenings.
Now it is all loud music and computers, internet and Facebook. All these things are not needed.
Bring back the horse and cart days, then this world would be a better place to live in for sure.
Ellen Crofts, Bendigo
Case against euthanasia
The Victorian Parliament is about to debate a bill on physician-assisted suicide and euthanasia in some form.
To enable doctors to “hasten a patient's death” is a very risky thing indeed.
The article in Saturday's Bendigo Advertiser includes a comment "the patient exercised their right to refuse medical treatment". That is within any patient's right.
The article seems to confuse palliative care and assisted suicide. Being pain free is a vital part of palliative care but what is proposed for Victoria is something much more dangerous. People should not be lulled into a false sense of security when politicians talk about “safeguards”. There are no safe physician-assisted or euthanasia laws.
The ministerial panel did not ask whether or not Victorians wanted this type of legislation, but rather, how it should be framed.
To say that this is time for Victoria to have such a law seems that the people have no choice but to like it or not. If the Parliament of Victoria was foolish enough to legislate for physician-assisted suicide and euthanasia, this would completely demoralise Victorians living with the feeling of being a burden to their families or society.
If such assisted suicide legislation were passed in this state, the improvement and expansion of palliative care skills would be discouraged.
The End of Life Choices Inquiry received 35 submissions for such improvements.
Not only that, but the health insurance industry would, in time, probably encourage that thinking and feeling.
This has happened in various places in the world where assisted suicide and/or euthanasia has been law for some years.
Oregon has become a place where there has been a profound shift in attitude toward medical care – a new fear and secrecy.
This year Oregon has a bill expanding the existing physician aid in dying law, SB 494, which seeks to allow medically vulnerable persons, patients who are awake, conscious and aware to be denied food and water – even by spoon. This bill has passed the Senate. Also in Oregon, health care funds have decided that physician-assisted suicide was a better option – for them – than the financial burden of medical treatment.
The Australian Law Reform Commission says powers of attorney are being used by children as a “licence to steal” from their elderly parents. Vulnerable elderly or disabled persons would be exposed to the risk of coercion which would be difficult to detect.
There are many reasons to reject any bill seeking to legalise doctor-assisted suicide in any form, but removing the prohibition of intentional killing – which is the cornerstone of law and social relationships – is a major consideration.
Once such legislation is in place it is very difficult, if not impossible, to remove.
Helen Leach, Bendigo
Debasing the flag
The way I learnt it, the Aussie flag belonged in one or two places; either up a flagpole or over the coffin of a notable dead Australian.
It most certainly never belonged on the backs of so-called patriots and wrapped around their faces to conceal their identities. The debasement of our flag as a symbol to promote the filth pretending to be patriots is disgusting.