Daily Hampshire Gazette - Established 1786
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Wishes of those dying  should matter most

To the editor:

I agree with the Gazette editorial Oct. 30 that gingerly supports the passage of Question 2, the Death With Dignity Act, on Election Day.

I do not support it because I am 72 or because I have any intention at present to avail myself of its legal permissions. I support it in part because I think the circumstances of the aging and the infirm do not deserve to be overridden by the moralities of those who claim to know better.

At 93, my mother once said to me without any whimpering, “I’d die if I could, but I don’t know how.” She was neither ill nor in pain at the time, but her body was old, her hearing was going, her sight did not allow her to read and she had lost much physical mobility.

The statement and the sentiment it expressed were not a matter of sorrow or a plea for relief. Rather, they were statements of fact: Old age is not for sissies.

To my mind, there are too many sissies involving themselves in what, after all, is a matter of personal choice ... perhaps the last significant choice a person has left. Doctors and those with “religious” inclinations are free to steer clear of the proposed legal format.

But I think those would-be arbiters should ask themselves whether the virtue of their positions were not causing harm in the name of their own self-serving “good.” What greater expression of love for the dying could there be than, “I wish you what you wish.”

I will vote for Question 2.

Adam Fisher

Northampton

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