Comments:British conductor Edward Downes and wife die in double assisted suicide

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Good for them. I'm glad people are -- at least, in some circumstances and places -- given the choice of terminating their lives peacefully, rather than facing the inevitable, and possibly burdening others with medical costs and care. I think doing this shows a lot of dignity on their behalf, and sets a precedent for other people to consider that they do have other options besides indefinite hospitalization. 72.150.237.66 (talk) 23:36, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

Agreed. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 128.211.177.24 (talk) 11:51, 15 July 2009 (UTC)

Leave their private choices alone, and be grateful for the joy they brought to this world. Everyone has the right to die with dignity.

this should be legalised[edit]

i think this proceedurer should be legalised because a lot people suffer from different ailments and are unable to get the rest they need. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Tenderlivity (talkcontribs) 19:18, 15 July 2009 (UTC)

Better watch out, ghosts of Edward and Joan Downes. The police are investigating you. -MTops —Preceding unsigned comment added by 69.156.13.88 (talk) 01:57, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

Why is the death of the couple referred to as an "assisted suicide"? I was aware that there was a special term for this kind of death -"euthanasia". Calling the Downes' decision to end their live by their own will as a result of debilitating injury a suicide is criminalizing their act of great courage and desparation.—Tigaernach (talk) 07:31, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

Simple use of the word 'suicide' does no such thing. It was a suicide; a decision to take their own lives. It was assisted; some kind people were willing to help them through with it. Blood Red Sandman (Talk) (Contribs) 17:08, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
To my mind "assisted suicide" is a more neutral term than "euthanasia" where the "eu-" comes from the Greek for "good". The Downes' supporters would say that they did have a good death. "Pro-life" (another loaded term) advocates would not say that it was a good death. The policy of Wikinews is that articles should not take sides in debates such as these.
On the other hand, it is true that Ted and Joan did commit suicide in that they each drank a drug knowing that it was a fatal poison in the quantities they took. It was assisted in that they were provided with the drug by people who knew why they would take it and who had the expertise to set the dose.
"Assisted suicide" is also narrower than "euthanasia" in that the latter term includes circumstances in which the dying person does not make the decision or does not carry out the killing act themselves.
And the criminalising of an act is done by the powers that be not and not by the description of it. The w:Suicide Act 1961 states that "A person who aids, abets, counsels or procures the suicide of another, or attempt by another to commit suicide shall be liable on conviction on indictment to imprisonment for a term not exceeding fourteen years." The Downes did certainly aid and abet eachother's suicides. So in Britain, crimes were committed. That is why the CID have become involved. They are no doubt investigating how Caractacus and Boudicca were involved, though the Crown Prosecution Service will almost certainly decide that it is not in the public interest to prosecute them.
The same actions would be perfectly legal in Switzerland. And in Britain before 1961, the Downes would also have committed crimes in killing themselves. As I said, it's the powers that be that decide that actions are crimes. And, as the article implies, opinion is divided about whether the powers that be in Britain have it right.--Peter cohen (talk) 17:31, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
Let's not quibble over the neutrality of semantics. 'Euthanasia' is a perfectly acceptable (and accurate) term. 70.153.122.40 (talk) 21:02, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
"Euthanasia" is a mercy killing. To make it equivalent to "assisted suicide" one would have to call it "voluntary euthanasia" --SVTCobra 21:52, 16 July 2009 (UTC)