Physician-assisted suicide is sold to the public as a “compassionate” measure, necessary to spare those with no reasonable chance of recovery the unbearable pain and suffering of the last days of their life. In every context in which it has been made legal, however, what might be called euthanasia-by-another-name has never remained limited to the rare instances on which it was sold.
There are reasons this slope has proven so slippery, literally everywhere it has been made legal. Once it is decided that certain lives are not worth living, the list of people eligible for physician-assisted suicide inevitably grows. As the list of people without intrinsic value grows, it becomes impossible to not re-evaluate lives based on some other criteria, perhaps convenience or financial costs. It’s a small step indeed from “eligible to die” to “expected to die.”