For those of you who don't know; the media appears to be having a field day. Everyone who can is playing up to public fears and ignorance, as well as spreading misinformation about a recent event. Sandra Kanck, leader of the SA democrats, used her privilege to point out the stupidity of a law in state parliment. The law prohibits publication of suicide methods on the internet. She detailed methods one can use to kill themselves, in protest.
Since it's in the constitution (state?) that every going on in state parliment is put into the 'hansard', and that's now published on the internet, she very cleverly demonstrated the foolishness inherent.
It was about then the vultures came out to play.
The point of having people in state government is to have challenging and well thought out debate around issues. Kanck used her privilege to highlight an issue she feels is being ignored. Euthenasia. She's damned right too. Its a basic human right, and preventing the publication of information is against the notions of free speech, not to mention utter insanity.
To make law only target electronic media makes it even stupidier. Firstly because it's on every fucking myspace, livejournal, and look-im-16-and-tragic blog in existence, secondly because the law doesn't ban me from writing it into a letter, publishing in a book, or yelling it from the rooftops.
In the interest of challenging this law, I'd like to help those in need of death. - jukeb0x.com advises to be sure to use enough gun - suicide is not something you want to screw up.
suicidemethods.net recommends you buy the book (just so you know what it looks like to screw up), or look at the pictures, Dmoz has a category on it, Wikipedia has a section, Satanservice.org has a handy cheat sheet.
My favourite, by far, is How to Kill Yourself Like A Man. Eat a tub full of beans. Very tough. Very manly.
Do you think, if I'm a young individual, or elderly person, I'm going to go onto the internet, pull up google, and type in "kanck + hansard record + suicide"?
Don't flatter yourselves, state government vultures!
The bigger picture: The right to die is a basic human right. Giving a person the ability to go to a doctor and ask for their life to be ended should be legal. It should be entirely the doctor's obligation to ensure on all levels that someone is not merely depressed, but does infact want to die. It should be possible for someone to ease their own pain with an easy method, rather having to attempt to shoot themselves (and possibly fuck it up).
Can anyone navigate the federal government hansard? I can't do it, can you? It's hidden in layers of governmentese, and stuffed into PDF form. What about the SA hansard? (actually, the SA hansard is better, it has search)
As far as I can tell:
- No media outlets actually know what Kanck has said - or not provably so, because to be certain they have to have it in the hansard.
- It's not in the hansard, so the public can't check for themselves
- People who have a strong motivation to harm her public image are the biggest, and most vocal protesters about the 'foul act'.
- Dr John Brayley, the SA Director of Mental Health only has fear and superstition to back up his beliefs that 'internet publication leads to increases in suicide'; and barely half a wit to think that the hansard is the first place people look to off themselves.
- The media, who are decrying the act as shameful themselves, do so because they too think it will increase the amount of suicides. Only, the circus they have raised about the issue is far more likely to generate internet searches about suicide - there's so much of it. In decrying Kanck for being immoral, they have made themselves exactly what they accuse her of.
- People, in general, are stupid. Listeners to 891 ABC Adelaide would have heard an interview by Dave & Tony with Kanck about the issue. They kept ringing up to talk about the issue - only everybody got their panties in a twist and completely forgot what exactly it was Kanck had said. Hysteria ensued. Worse than that, the other person in the interview kept repeating baseless propaganda - and the callers kept attacking Kanck about what other people said as being misinformed.