Tony Nicklinson has now taken his campaign to die with dignity onto Twitter. He seems like a very brave man with a passionate belief in a cause, and the strength pursue it. Surely this is reason for him to be alive, not dead? At least until he wins, or dies trying. Might this campaign to die now in fact be helping to keep him alive?
A relative of mine died quite recently, he was in his eighties and a very physical, active man all his life. He depended on his body, and mobility, which made life worthwhile for him. When he lost them, and was unable to play golf or garden or take his walks, he became more resigned and defeated. He’d ‘had a bellyful’ as he put it.
He contracted a routine chest infection which became double pneumonia (the ‘Old Man’s Friend’) and was dead within two weeks. The question does arise that if he had found another horizon to his life which did not rely on his body, another source of his identity, that he would be as alive as the rest of us now.
Tony Nicklinson may like to consider that by fighting his campaign, especially on Twitter, he is likely to lose the will to die, and destroy his own campaign. Fighting is definitely a kind of living, win or lose.
But that’s the internet, full of surprises.