Friday, January 2, 2015

Cancer the ‘best’ way to die, says ex-editor of British Medical Journal, so stop funding research for a cure | National Post

Cancer is the best way to die because it gives people the chance to come to terms with their own mortality, the former editor of the British Medical Journal has claimed.

Dr. Richard Smith, an honorary professor at the University of Warwick, said charities should stop spending billions trying to find a cure for the disease because it was clearly the best option for an ageing population.

He argued that a protracted death allowed time to say goodbye to loved ones, listen to favourite pieces of music or poetry and leave final messages.

Writing in a blog for the British Medical Journal, Dr. Smith admitted that his view was "romantic," but claimed that the pain of dying could be made bearable through "love, morphine, and whisky."

However, Cancer Research UK claimed his comments were "nihilistic" and gave little thought to young people whose lives are cut short by the disease. His views were also criticized by the families of sufferers, who accused him of insensitivity.