"If you want to know why euthanasia is dangerous for disability rights check out this comment on an article on welfare reform on ABC online today"
It would seem that the anonymity of the commenting system provides 'Simon2808' with the ability to say what he really thinks whereas one would think that had he or she used their real identity they may have been more circumspect. Of course, it could have been a joke. But if a joke, then one in extremely poor taste and one that still sheds a light on a darkened corner of his or her being.
"Holy crap!! I got the chills reading that, Craig. It's terrifying, but there are a lot of people out there who share his views. It's a struggle."
Comments like this sum up my deep and profound unease around euthanasia.
They provide us with an uncomfortable glimpse of how quickly the public discourse on disability defaults to a discussion about ridding the community of people who would be better off dead. It's not isolated.
Articles on euthanasia and disability often attract comments which invite the idea that we might all better off if people with disability were out of the way.
Even if made by attention seekers they tell us that the idea that people with disability are wasters who are taking up useful resources is one that is floating around in the zeitgeist and are very close to the surface.
They should worry and dismay all disability rights activists and dispel the notion that the push for euthanasia can be contained to a harmless campaign around rights and choice for people who are dying.
For me euthanasia is not playing out as a progressive issue. It's the tip of an extreme utilitarian agenda which is antithetical to us. I believe it presents a threat to disability rights and should be opposed by people who care about the way we are perceived and regarded until we have the same rights and supports as the rest of the community.
Whatever you think about the wider issues of choice for people who are dying - and these are difficult issues - to contemplate state sanctioned voluntary euthanasia while we have community attitudes like this held by many ordinary people should be unthinkable.
Note: The offensive comment has since been removed from the ABC website but, most likely, the utilitarian and offensive attitude remains.
Craig Wallace is also the Convenor of 'Lives Worth Living' a new rights based network of Australians with disability speaking up about euthanasia and eugenics.