Whoa, Stephen Hawking is getting pretty deep. In a new interview, the brilliant scientist shockingly reveals he would consider assisted suicide under certain conditions. Find out what they are, and why he isn’t ready to take action on this just yet.
Stephen Hawking, 73, has never let his motor neuron disease stop him from sharing his brilliant ideas with the world, but it turns out he has some pretty morbid thoughts, as well. The famed physicist is now opening up about why he’d consider assisted suicide if he felt he had “nothing more to contribute” to the world.
“To keep someone alive against their wishes is the ultimate indignity,” the 73-year-old explains on a BBC program. “I would consider assisted suicide only if I were in great pain or felt I had nothing more to contribute but was a burden to those around me.”
Whoa, intense, right? But, don’t worry, Hawking supporters — he has no plans on feeling that way anytime soon! “I am damned if I’m going to die before I have unravelled more of the universe,” he adds. In case you didn’t know, Stephen was diagnosed with a rare, slow-progressing form of ALS/Lou Gehrig’s disease in 1963, when he was just 21. At the time, he was given only two years to live. Of course, he has long-surpassed those odds.
Unfortunately, the disease has left Stephen wheelchair-bound, and unable to speak or move independently. “At times I get very lonely because people are afraid to talk to me or don’t wait for me to write a response,” he admits. “I’m shy and tired at times. I find it difficult to talk to people I don’t know.”
Stephen Hawking: He’s Attempted Suicide In The Past
While Hawking’s claims about assisted suicide are pretty shocking, it’s actually not the first time he’s publicly discussed the idea. Back in 2014, he even admitted to attempting the act himself. “I briefly tried to commit suicide by not breathing,” he told the BBC. “However, the reflex to breathe was too strong.”
In that interview, he explained that he felt it would be “wrong to despair and commit suicide, unless one is in great pain, but that is a matter of choice. We should not take away the freedom of the individual to choose to die.” Super deep.
HollywoodLifers, do you agree with Stephen Hawking’s view on assisted suicide?
— Alyssa Norwin