Falklands public debate votes for 'dying with dignity'

AROUND 85% of those who attended a debate on ‘dying with dignity’ voted in favour of the concept in a straw poll held at the end of the meeting on Tuesday evening.
Thoughtful arguments on both sides were presented at the well attended debate held at the Court and Council Chamber.

For the Motion were MLA Barry Elsby and MLA Leona Roberts, along with Jodie Aldridge, describing herself as pro-choice, while against was Reverend Nicholas Mercer on behalf of the Christ Church Cathedral as well as the Tabernacle and St Mary’s.
Mark Lewis acted as the independent chair of the meeting.
MLA Elsby introduced the motion describing the history of the concept and those countries that had adopted it. MLA Roberts felt it was all about individual choice and not a denial of the sanctity of life or need for care of the ill.
She said, “All the way through people’s lives we fight for their dignity and for their right to make choices for themselves so to then say at the end of their lives we would deny them, that I struggle with completely.”
Mrs Aldridge said she was there as “…pro-choice. I believe that all people should be able to have choices within their life and this would transfer to their deaths as well…. I think it is important that we as a community come together to discuss this, how do we feel that we see this, and to hear all the various opinions.” 
She was also keen that other topics were also be discussed in the same manner in the future.
Reverend Mercer said the churches in the Falklands resisted the concept and they would see it as a retrograde step. 
He said: “The church has an understanding of human life based on the bible and based on our understanding of the trinity, and biblically-based we consider our bodies are temples of the holy spirit, that God touches all our lives, we are made by God and we are made in the image of God and to violate that sacred principle is a step that should be resisted.”
He said they were also a compassionate organisation seeking to care for the vulnerable, who are “most at risk in these circumstances…we seek not to kill people but to build a caring, cohesive society and also respect the intrinsic value of every human being.”

Continued in Penguin News