Brittany Maynard's mother is taking a stand against the critics who've likened her daughter's tragic death on November 1st to a "reprehensible act".
Debbie Ziegler, who supported Brittany's decision to die with dignity after she was diagnosed with terminal cancer, wrote a very emotional and poignant letter in defense of her child's actions.
[ Related: Vatican Condemns Brittany Decision To Take Her Own Life! ]
While there are TONS of people who support Maynard's difficult choice, there are also plenty, including a Vatican official, who vehemently oppose the death with dignity cause.
On Tuesday, Debbie wrote a letter which shut down Brit's opponents with intelligence, poise, and heart:
"I am Brittany Maynard's mother. I am writing in response to a variety of comments made in the press and online by individuals and institutions that have tried to impose their personal belief system on what Brittany and our family feel is a human rights issue. The imposition of "belief" on a human rights issue is wrong. To censure a personal choice as reprehensible because it does not comply with someone else's belief is immoral. My twenty-nine-year-old daughter's choice to die gently rather than suffer physical and mental degradation and intense pain does not deserve to be labeled as reprehensible by strangers a continent away who do not know her or the particulars of her situation."
We agree with Ziegler — personal choice should NOT be censored.
"Reprehensible is a harsh word. It means: "very bad; deserving very strong criticism." Reprehensible is a word I've used as a teacher to describe the actions of Hitler, other political tyrants and the exploitation of children by pedophiles. As Brittany Maynard's mother, I find it difficult to believe that anyone who knew her would ever select this word to describe her actions. Brittany was a giver. She was a volunteer. She was a teacher. She was an advocate. She worked at making the world a better place to live. This word was used publicly at a time when my family was tender and freshly wounded. Grieving. Such strong public criticism from people we do not know, have never met – is more than a slap in the face. It is like kicking us as we struggle to draw a breath."
There are no words to adequately describe the heartache we feel for Debbie and the rest of Brittany's family. We can't even begin to imagine the pain they must go through every time a stranger attacks their loved one, especially since Maynard is no longer here to defend herself.
Instead of spreading hate, let's just remember Brittany for the beautiful and inspirational woman she was!
Stay strong, Debbie.
[Image via The Brittany Fund.]
Tags: brain cancer, brittany maynard, cancer, death, death with dignity, defense, emotional, health, letter, life, politik, sad sad