With the 24-hour news cycle, at times it takes a special story to stick with you and evoke deeper thinking over a concerted period of time.
For me, reading about Professor David Goodall earlier this year was one of those narratives that left its mark.
The 104-year-old WA academic made the conscious decision to travel to Switzerland to engage the European country’s assisted dying laws – ending his life, on his own terms, because he legally could not do it here.
For the younger generation, the heavy issue of euthanasia may seem like something for decades down the track, but most people have been impacted in some capacity as elder loved ones come to the end of their journey.
With the WA Government taking the first step to new assisted dying legislation with a parliamentary process underway, the Mail has been focusing on the issue over the last fortnight.
Last week I spoke to pro-euthanasia resident Nigel Haines, with the Mandurah man telling me about the heartache of his wife Suzie’s suffering as she succumbed to Alzheimer’s disease over years – and how she longed for euthanasia to ease her pain.
This week, journalist Carla Hildebrandt sat down with Mandurah pastor Mark Sena, who as a religious man gave his view that life was a gift and spoke about the complicated circumstances around the potential legislation.
Both sides make compelling arguments.
But, what will happen next?
It seems likely that this emotive issue will become a Government Bill and our elected members will then debate, and ultimately vote on, whether it becomes law or things remain as they currently are.
As such, you – as a member of the public – will not cast a decisive vote. That will come down to your elected officials.
Most people will have an opinion on this issue, one way or the other – but this will go largely unheard unless you express it to our local MPs.
While David Templeman, Robyn Clarke and Zak Kirkup may have pre-determined stances on this issue, their job now is to listen to the thoughts of their constituents and eventually vote accordingly after taking feedback on board.
The Mail will follow this story through to completion, covering local reaction – if you have an opinion or a story to tell, share it with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.