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World News Suicide machine draws crowds at Amsterdam funeral show
Quote:A controversial suicide pod that enables its occupant to kill themselves at a press of a button went on display at Amsterdam funeral show on April 14.

Called the "Sarco", short for sarcophagus, the 3D-printed machine invented by Australian euthanasia activist Philip Nitschke and Dutch designer Alexander Bannink comes with a detachable coffin, mounted on a stand that contains a nitrogen canister.

"The person who wants to die presses the button and the capsule is filled with nitrogen. He or she will feel a bit dizzy but will then rapidly lose consciousness and die," said Nitschke, who has been dubbed "Dr Death" for his work to legalise euthanasia.

The "Sarco" is a device "to provide people with a death when they wish to die," Nitschke told AFP.

The inventors put a model of the device on display, together with a set of virtual reality glasses to give visitors a true-to-life experience of what it would be like to sit in the pod, before ultimately pressing the button.

Nitschke said he aimed to build the first fully-functioning pod before the end of the year.

After that, the design will be put online as an open-source document for people to download.

"That means that anybody who wants to build the machine can download the plans and 3D-print their own device," Nitschke said.

Asked about the controversy surrounding euthanasia and legal hurdles, Nitschke said: "In many countries suicide is not against the law, only assisting a person to commit suicide is."

"This is a situation where one person chooses to press a button... rather than for instance standing in front of a train."

"I believe it's a fundamental human right (to choose when to die). It's not just some medical privilege for the very sick. If you've got the precious gift of life, you should be able to give that gift away at the time of your choosing," Nitschke said.

Thousands of visitors flocked to the annual Amsterdam Funeral Expo at the city's famous Westerkerk, where all the latest trends in death, such as biodegradable coffins and a hot-rod funeral hearse were on display.

But the "Sarco" drew large crowds, many of them morbidly curious to try out the device's chair and virtual reality glasses.

"It was really an experience and a strange thing to see. But very pretty and calm. You see the moon, you see the sea. It's very calm," said Piet Verstraaten, 52, from the eastern Dutch city of Venray.

Others, however, were not impressed.

"Well, I think it's quite silly. It's stupid. I don't get it. I'm not interested in a real 'Sarco'. No," said 52-year-old Rob Bruntink. — AFP Relaxnews

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My primary problem with this is that I'd rather have resources, time, and effort spent making society a place where people don't feel the pressure to commit suicide. I can't deny someone the right to create available methods of painless death, nor someone's right to choose to die, but there's no way I could see this being anywhere beyond commercial creation.
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It's sad people would rather build literal suicide machines to let impulsive suicidal people who aren't thinking clearly to end their lives rather than actually spend time helping out people who are suicidal.

In a way, not only are you helping someone end their life with a simple press of a button, you effectively have to live with the fact your machine is out there ruining the lives of those people's family members and friends. You'd rather destroy more than actually do some good, and I think it's abhorrent.

Also, it's pretty fucked to make a gas chamber and display it in Amsterdam, one of the largest cities in Germany that had a sizeable Jewish population at the time of World War II. I don't think it's a coincidence he decides to call a portable gas chamber a "sarcophagus" as a euphemism. Fuck this guy.
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Guess I gotta say I really agree with the above comments. You could use your time and talents for so many things but you use it to build a f$%kin' public gas chamber in a place where holocaust survivors can potentially see it and for that matter to make "suicide rights" of all things your life's work. People who do it do it regardless of what legislation or what have you exist and from what I can tell there are even ways to do it relatively painlessly. Honestly, I think advocating for it at all beyond that in this regard is kinda f&%ked since it almost encourages it and it's not something I think anyone should encourage.
The others have a point.

All the money you could use to buy nitrogen, a 3D printer, and print out and assemble your own suicide machine.

Could be spent on a bloody therapist.
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