Saturday, 4 December 2010


As I type this, all across Britain, there are lives trapped in bodies that refuse to die, guarded by laws thay say they must 'live'. For farm animals and pets, lives that share all our physical function and pain, there is no such protection. Some wild animals even have special rights.

But of all the animals, we are the ones who keenly understand the entrapment of old age and disease, being in no doubt that it can only get worse unless death brings release. Many of us want to die according to the parameters we specify, not those of a sadistic State Nanny.

Who in their right mind would demand that this torture should continue? Does God like to watch old people die a degrading death? Do care home companies give large donations to political parties, demanding continuance of the status quo? Would a significant number of care workers be unemployed, and riot, if the number of living-dead were reduced?

Look into the eyes of my brother, 'celebrating' his 77th birthday after living a full 6 months more than he wished, following a disabling stroke. He had another six weeks to endure when this photo was taken. (The staff were kindness personified but could not give John his dearest wish.)

Look into his eyes. See the resignation and despair. The NHS tricked him into this situation while I (his confidant and champion) was absent. Look, and wonder, at the motivation of our government.

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