page updated 2014-12-13
I think it a safe assumption that most Americans consider suicide wrong. However, I believe that lumping all suicides into a single wrong category is itself wrong. There are good reasons for committing suicide. Indeed, I believe there are situations where it's a person's responsibility to take one's own life, situations where not doing so would be immoral.
For example, let's say I'm terminally ill, but my life can be extended for 6 months with very expensive treatment, so expensive that it would wipe us out financially. It would be immoral for me to impoverish my wife for the rest of her healthy life just to extend my unhealthy life for that short period.
I hope that, should I find myself in such a situation, I will have the courage of my convictions. A few years back, a guy in California was marketing helium suicide kits. I had thought about getting one in case I might need it in the future. Procrastinator that I am, I never got around to it, and in 2010 Oregon outlawed the sale of such kits. That's a bad law. Worse, it was sponsored by State Senator Floyd Prozanski, who can usually be counted on for a progressive outlook, and for whom I had voted. I voted for him again in this last election (2014), but with considerably less enthusiasm than previously.
If need be, anyone of course can easily commit suicide. For me there's a stream that runs through our property. It's really cold. All I would have to do is strip naked and lay in it for awhile. It wouldn't take long, but I hate cold water. Then there's the shotgun-in-the-mouth procedure, but that's really messy, though I would do it outside in the woods on our property, again without clothing to make the cleanup as easy as possible. Actually, there wouldn't be much cleanup necessary if the body was left for awhile. We have cougar, bear, coyote, fox, turkey vultures, possum, raccoon and other predators regulary on our property.
Passing laws making it harder to do what people can easily do otherwise and have a need to do is illogical.