The author of a recent op-ed (Maine Voices, Nov. 29) argued against physician aid in dying, resurrecting the old fake news scarecrows such as eager heirs convincing Grandma to shuffle offstage. In two decades of helping people avoid the torment of an ugly death, I never saw the greedy heir or the slippery slope or any other such staple of the propaganda against aid in dying.

The writer, Mike Reynolds, also misidentified “terminal illness,” which is declared when a physician feels that death is likely to occur within six months.

We take our suffering pets to a vet for euthanasia and call it “humane.” What do we call it when nosy busybodies claim the right to prescribe “cruel and unusual punishment” to someone they don’t even know whose terminal cancer is eating brain or bone, causing untreatable pain, or whose nervous system is gradually going on strike, leaving them alert but progressively paralyzed?

Patients who acted upon medical information to obtain a peaceful escape from the occasional cruelty of nature have been some of the most intelligent, courageous and grateful folks I ever met!

As for values, Mainers are independent. Let them decide. Mind your own business.

Gerald A. Metz, M.D.