The culture would rather this issue be left alone. The culture says simply that this is a personal matter and there's but one mind on it. The culture sees a contrary opinion on this as judgment and high-mindedness.
The culture, let's face it, is the death culture and the death culture is single-minded.
Thank God for people like David Mills, who is unafraid to confront that single-mindedness:
I can see the appeal of “death with dignity” and programs like those offered in Oregon and the Netherlands, where doctors will help you leave this world at the moment of your choosing, without fuss or bother or pain. I do not want to die and I really, really do not want to die the way my father did. I would find the indignities as excruciating as he did, and I have no confidence I would deal with the pain as bravely as he. I would not want my children to see me so pathetic.
“Death with dignity” seems to offer not only an escape from pain and humiliation but a rational and apparently noble way to leave this life. You look death in the eye and show him that you, not he, are in control. All “dying with dignity” requires is that you declare yourself God. Make yourself the lord of life and death, and you can do what you want. All you have to do, as a last, definitive act, is to do what you’ve been doing all your life: Declare yourself, on the matter at hand, the final authority, the last judge, the one vote that counts.
But you are not God, and, the Christian believes, the decision of when to leave this life is not one He has delegated to you. It is not your call. The Father expects you to suffer if you are given suffering and to put up with indignities if you are given indignities. The Lord gives, and the Lord takes away; blessed be the name of the Lord. And that, as far as dying goes, is that.
This is not, from a worldly point of view, a comforting or comfortable teaching. It is one much easier for Christians to observe in theory than in practice, and to apply to other people than to themselves. In practice, we will want to die “with dignity.”
My father was an engineer. I’m not sure if he read a theological book in his life. The questions that interested me bemused him. But he knew who he was and what he was called to do, a condition others would put in a theological language I suspect he thought was unnecessary. He was dying. That was his job, and he would do it as well as he could.
Lying in a hospice bed, in the very last situation he would have chosen for himself, my father taught me that to die with dignity means to accept what God has given you and deal with it till the end. It means to play the hand God has dealt you, no matter how bad a hand it is, without folding. It means actually to live as if the Lord gives, and the Lord takes away, and in either case blessed be the name of the Lord.
It’s dignity of a different sort than the corruptingly euphemistic slogan “death with dignity” suggests.
You need to read the entire piece. Though for David it's so deeply personal I think it to be deeply relevant to what's happening today.
I'm aware that because this issue is so personal, the temptation on it is, as I know many are doing, to simply shrug and adopt the mantra of live and let die. But there's much at stake here. So much. And for faithful Catholics, there are core principles involved.
What follows is educational though I hesitate initially in posting it because I think too many are put off by the overtly religious... but... it brings some much needed clarity to this in my view... so... why not sit through the following 3 minutes and minimally better understand why there's opposition to this issue from faithful Catholics.