Answer by Kris Rosvold:
I can't speak for any other atheists so you'll have to ask them.
I'm 52 now, and in good health but, became aware of my mortality when I got sober in the 80's. I've thought this issue over a pretty fair amount.
1) Death holds no fear for me, I've lived a good full life. I've had ups and downs and I've come to the conclusion that when my time is up I will do my best to go out with dignity in as little pain as possible.
2) I have a standing D.N.R. order calling for "No Heroic Measures." This means no ventillator, no open heart/lung surgery, no brain surgery, etc. It's also listed in my I.C.E Contacts right behind the Darling Wife, with a note that if they disregard this D.N.R. order, the FULL cost of care will be their problem. I will not give up my family's home for their grasping profit margins.
3) That said, the Right to die is a fundamental human Right, and anyone who asserts otherwise, to me, will be told to self-fornicate in very direct terms. If they're very lucky, only their eyebrows will get singed.
4) See, the bottom line is that life isn't "sacred" and never has been. If you doubt me on this simply look at the eagerness with which religions have murdered, raped and pillaged any nonbelievers over the millenia.
Even in just the past 30 years theists have used religious beliefs to justify the assault, shunning, and murder of:
Women seeking medical care.
Doctors offering medication care.
Ordinary nonbelievers who have done NOTHING that's "morally", or legally wrong, outside of failing to "just shut up and accept" the locally approved religion.
These "crimes" for which folks are informally persecuted and shunned, are thought crimes.
Those adhering to different belief sets (if you really think Afghanistan and Iraq weren't seen as a justified Holy conquest by theists in the military, just spend a bit of time in almost any Army or Navy barracks or a country diner, and listen to them talk. I have).
So it appears to me, based upon the historical evidence, that this assertion that "life is sacred" is an entirely convenient, and thus valueless, assertion.
5) In short, those who assert a "universal Holy Law" and then ACT in direct and intentional contravention of that "law" don't get to tell me anything at all about what my morals should be, because their actions make their teachings utterly unsuitable for use as a foundation for my own morals.
6) Were life actually "sacred" in any meaningful sense; those who kill and assault in the name of their religion would be ex-communicated, along with the sects which encourage such behavior, because that is what the teachings of their claimed savior demand.
Instead, they are lauded by their communities, or their actions are conveniently dismissed as an aberration, and ignored.
So… assertions of "morals" aren't going to do it either…
My Right to die as and when I see fit is MY Right. It is mine alone, and the ONLY people who have a word to say about it are those whom I choose as my family.
To assert (or imply) anything different is to assert that I am a slave to this world, this country, and your "god."
I'm not, and never will be. I will leave as and when I see fit. Period.
If and when the veil of life becomes too heavy, I will leave in the least painful way possible.