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Ex-doctor gets prison term for consensual killing of woman with ALS

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When is Japan going to come to terms with its aging and sickly population?

Assisted suicide needs to be a real option for people here.

Japanese politicos are (as usual)!leay behind the curve in this…

10 ( +24 / -14 )

It is called death with dignity, a personal choice and one that needs to be discussed openly. Processes and safeguards need to be created for people who would prefer quality over quantity of life.

13 ( +20 / -7 )

Kabuki actor Ennosuke, who assisted his parents’ suicide, walked free. He’ll probably be back on stage in a year or two. It’s not fair.

12 ( +17 / -5 )

Suspended sentence right?

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

Kabuki actor Ennosuke, who assisted his parents’ suicide, walked free. He’ll probably be back on stage in a year or two. It’s not fair.

Yep I was having the same exact thought

10 ( +15 / -5 )

Every adult should have access to an easy exit. Medical science may fail you in life but they can at least make things easier for you.

6 ( +12 / -6 )

With Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis people become paralyzed from the outside-in. That means that the last stage before death a person just lies there and can only think until death. I can't imagine that. I would go insane. . .and finally die. People would put down an animal for mercy for things not as horrible as ALS.

This doctor is a hero. He should have been given an award. And it's not just Japan. The US has the same attitude. There are a couple of states that allow physician assisted death, but, really it should exist everywhere. If I am going to die like that, I'd want to go out before I lose control of everything.

10 ( +15 / -5 )

Didn’t I say so? This country’s “justice” system is a joke. And not a particularly funny one at that. SMH again.

Nov. 18  08:56 am JSTPosted in: Kabuki actor Ennosuke gets suspended term for helping parents' suicides  See in context

Is this a joke? Did I miss six months of my life and it’s April Fool’s or something? Talk about a two-tiered justice system. If you or I, or any country doctor had done this………smh

-6 ( +5 / -11 )

Y’know, if I was ever in the situation of wanting to die and needed my wife’s help, I think I’d hop a flight to the Netherlands. Seems much more humane.

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

For a country that has such a large, senior population, Japan sure is ignorant of its realities. The doctor should be awarded.

6 ( +15 / -9 )

I believe that I should have the right to determine how and when I die, and if I cannot make that decision, then my next of kin should be allowed to make that decision. Not a doctor, hospital, or government. I think that a DNR should not only apply to CPR, but also to medicines that prolong unnecessary life. I do not want to continue living if I am in constant pain or cannot live a somewhat productive life. I especially do not want my family to feel a financial burden or see what they could have inherited being drained by some nursing home or hospital.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

So in Japan you are welcome or even encouraged to kill yourself (suicide was the honourable way out), but you can't have somebody assist you,, even if you give them permission? Something deeply wrong with this.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Kabuki actor Ennosuke, who assisted his parents’ suicide, walked free. He’ll probably be back on stage in a year or two. It’s not fair.

TBF, there are some factors here that worked in Ennosuke's favor. For example, he didn't act with anyone else. If we accept the premise that assisted suicide is bad, a doctor feeling like he can do so is more societally dangerous than a Kabuki actor, simply because so many more people may rely on him to do so, while Ennosuke is likely to only be entrusted with assisting the suicide of his parents.

The second problem is that Japanese judges' feelings on the Suspended Sentence is different from the common man. It's as if they think that a Suspended Sentence is "almost as grave" as an Executed Sentence of the same duration. The common man sees it as "No Jail Time" vs "Jail Time". The only way out may be Legislation.

So in Japan you are welcome or even encouraged to kill yourself (suicide was the honourable way out), but you can't have somebody assist you,, even if you give them permission? Something deeply wrong with this.

Japanese Academia has three major positions on this issue:

1) Suicide is not illegal, because it is the self-disposal of one's own legal rights, an act of self-determination. However, it is not impossible to limit this right in the name of paternalism, because most people are far from a state of calmness and rationality. Thus it is within the State's discretion to limit it the extent of forbidding aiders.

2) Suicide by oneself is illegal, but insufficiently so to be criminally punishable. The illegality comes from the Japanese law position that life (as opposed to say dignity or freedom) is the highest value. However, suicide is an act of self-determination and this is sufficiently strong the "net illegality" doesn't reach the point of criminality. Having said that, since suicide itself is illegal, that another person can volunteer to assist, thus harming life can reach the point of actual criminality.

3) Suicide is illegal (to the point of criminality) but is excused when considering the motives and situations of the perpetrator. The aider, however, lacks such motives and thus bears aider's liability - the article 202 merely makes it explicit.

Your choice.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

The judge is implementing current law. The law needs to change. As others have said, in a society aging as rapidly as Japan, people should be allowed to die with dignity, and prioritize quality over length of life.

However, there are very few countries that have implemented assisted death even with stringent controls in place. Morally and legally it's complicated to implement in a way that eliminates risk of abuse. In Japan, I think there are deep-seating cultural aspects that would make it even less likely - e.g. a general belief in persevering in the face of suffering until the bitter end, not taking an 'easy' way out, etc.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

People should twitch and gasp to the last moment - every minute of life is too precious to be cut short.

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

Assisted suicide by medical professionals should be legalized in Japan. It’s better than those people jumping in-front of trains or jumping from high rise buildings to die. People should have a right to end their life peacefully rather than dying with pain in a miserable way!

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Watch the movie "Me before you" to grasp the ideas of life and liberty when under a uncurable medical condition.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

No good deed goes unpunished, I guess... unless you're a Kabuki actor, who also goes unpunished for drunken brawls.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

Making criminals out of those assisting people to die with dignity is not the right way to go about things.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Isn't assisted suicide illegal in most countries? I may be wrong but I think in Europe at least it is illegal in most countries except Switzerland.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

@grund,

It's legal in a number of European countries ( Austria, Belgium, Germany, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland). But the rules vary. For example, in most of those countries, the person must have a terminal illness.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

When is Japan going to come to terms with its aging and sickly population?

There are many much more ethically simple things it could be doing before even thinking about euthanasia.

Assisted suicide needs to be a real option for people here.

But thanks to people as the accused that take the law in their own hands and even brag about it the option is likely to take much longer, activists that have worked to change how society understand and takes patients having dignified deaths on their own terms can't help but feel betrayed by these crimes.

He’ll probably be back on stage in a year or two. It’s not fair.

Leaving aside the huge difference on the motives for the death, a doctor is a professional that have a formation that specifically deals with the ethical and legal aspects of assisting a patient dying, this means there is a much higher expectation on a doctor to act according to the law.

This doctor is a hero

The opposite, activists, doctors, lawyers that have worked for decades to change laws and give patients more options are heroes, a doctor that acted on his own, never working to change the situation, tried to hid his involvement is the farthest from a hero, thanks to these criminals the Japanese society will again make a direct connection between assisting these patients and crimes.

The judge is implementing current law. The law needs to change

Exactly, which is why people have worked very hard to do it with very limited success over a long time, success that may be negated with crimes like this.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Have your own death with dignity must be a right in all the world..

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

If the future goal is mercy killing available for all in Japan according to posts I have read here, should not Japanese society then kill the person as quickly as possible? If that is the case, then the guillotine is the best solution. Or a pistol.

Eventually, as it become more acceptable, Japan can compete with Holland, a country where 1 out of every 5 are euthanized.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

JeremiahToday 02:57 am JST

If the future goal is mercy killing available for all in Japan according to posts I have read here, should not Japanese society then kill the person as quickly as possible? If that is the case, then the guillotine is the best solution. Or a pistol.

The objective is as painlessly as possible, not as quickly as possible.

Eventually, as it become more acceptable, Japan can compete with Holland, a country where 1 out of every 5 are euthanized.

Very unlikely this is true. I read that only 1 in 20 deaths are from euthanasia in the Netherlands.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

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