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Essay:Dignity in death
The further I get into medicine the more I realize there are two types of people when it comes how one views the end of life. Those who are at peace with themselves and the world around them on one hand and blowhard Christians on the other. I am often taken back at how many born-again Christians I see view death. Since the time of Socrates there was a certain dignity in dying with honor with those you love around you both in the time and manner of ones choosing. Then the Christians got a hold on this topic and we found ourselves teaching that going on suicidal missions in the name of a prophet was dignified while choosing to opt out of the worst the world can offer is wholly against God and all that is holy. As we progress into modern times we find the Christian right has perverted this view even more and now death is suddenly the worst of all possible worlds. I can understand the how we got here but the why we are here baffles me. I thought, above all else, religion was supposed to provide comfort and hope for what comes after life, not to scare the whits out of people. What the fuck has happened to dignity in death and why the fuck are fundies trying to dictate how I may or may not ultimately die? Admiral Nimitz (who along with his beloved wife committed suicide) put it best: "Our decision was made over a considerable period of time and was not carried out in acute desperation. Nor is it the expression of a mental illness. We have consciously, rationally, deliberately and of our own free will taken measures to end our lives today because of the physical limitations on our quality of life placed upon us by age, failing vision, osteoporosis, back and painful orthopedic problems."