According to an expert on the issue, once euthanasia is legalized it becomes a natural trend – and he cites astonishing numbers from a European country to support his argument.
The latest figures from Switzerland (from 2014) show assisted suicide deaths are up 26 percent from 2013 – and more than 2.5 times as many as five years previously. The Swiss suicide clinic "The Exit" reported a 34-percent increase in business for 2015, while deaths from the other Swiss suicide clinics remain unknown.
"This is a worldwide phenomenon. Every time you legalize euthanasia, the numbers only go up every year," says Alex Schadenberg with the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition, "because there's more and more reasons why people now say I want to die – and there's more and more people willing to do it for more and more conditions. That's what we see in the Netherlands, and that's what we're seeing in Switzerland."
OneNewsNow reported earlier this year on the steady rise in doctor-assisted suicide in the Netherlands over the past five years.
Recent examples in Switzerland include a 62-year-old magistrate killed, but whose autopsy revealed an incorrect diagnosis; and an 85-year-old woman who was euthanized because she didn't like her appearance.
Schadenberg explains that for many individuals, euthanasia is becoming "the answer" for loneliness and depression – resulting in a "ridiculous situation."
"... When you've got a culture that kills its most vulnerable who are lonely or going through a time in their life when they really need others ... this is what it's coming down to," he laments. "Even in Oregon and Washington state they can say what they want, but their numbers have gone up every year in the last few years."