Human Exceptionalism

Media Assisted Suicide Pimps

Once again a beautiful woman with brain cancer has been named a person ”of the year” by a media outlet for pursing assisted suicide.

You will recall that CNN named Brittany Maynard an “extraordinary woman of the year” for committing assisted suicide.

Now the Herald in New Zealand has named a woman who sued unsuccessfully for the right to be killed was named its “New Zealander of the Year.” From the story:

Instead of spending her last months quietly with family and friends, she spent them in a legal battle – fighting for the right to choose how she died.

For that courageous effort, the late Wellington lawyer Lecretia Seales is the Herald’s New Zealander of the Year. She died, aged 42, on June 5 from brain cancer. Her death came just days after learning she had been unsuccessful in her High Court bid for the legal right for a doctor to help her end her life. She wanted the right to not die a painful death.

But here’s the thing: People who fight terminal disease and debilitating disabilities, who enter hospice and struggle against death are either ignored completely by the media, or praised faintly–as in Lauren Hill, who died naturally of brain cancer after a heroic struggle to play college basketball during her illnes,s as she raised money for cancer research.

Who should be the role model: Those who pursue “death with dignity” or “life with dignity?”

The media have clearly made their choice, and it’s a slap in the face of those who struggle gallantly with terminal illness and devastating disability.

In so doing, many media outlets have become suicide pimps. It really is that stark.

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