From our separate hells to sing of Paradise

In his letter ‘Matters of life or death’, Greg Cornwell (Canberra Times, 9 Jan 2017) poses a confusing question: “Do people who oppose the death penalty also oppose euthanasia?”

Clearly, the death penalty is a punitive act by the State following a court decision, while euthanasia is a humane option for terminally ill people with no quality of life, to be granted legal endorsement for their right to die with dignity, at a time and place of their choosing, often with medical assistance.

There is no evidence or reason to bind these two life-ending acts into a given endorsement or opposition by the people. Surveys will most likely reveal that many people who oppose the death penalty will support voluntary euthanasia. A humanistic response would demonstrate that there is no contradiction in people who oppose the death penalty, supporting euthanasia

As for Greg Cornwell`s views on the life and fate of life-sentenced prisoners, may I suggest he read “One Hundred and Three” by Henry Lawson..
– Keith McEwan, CLA member, Bonython ACT 
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