Dear Dr. Ted Baeher,

I argee that euthanasia is romanticized in the well-acclaimed film, Million Dollar Baby. It is a film about a middle age fighter who becomes paralyzed after a dirty blow during the championship welterweight title fight. However romanticized it is, her suicide (assisted by her fatherly coach) is merely plot development and a theme clarification point. It is not a diabolical plan of Clint Eastwood (director) to exterminate all handicapped people. This is where the Neo-Nazi analogy falls apart. This film is not aligned with many accepted religious morals, but that does not make it a propaganda piece of the Third Reich.
Romeo and Juliet romanticize suicide as well, but that is considered literary merit. Many great artists were suicidal when they painted their masterpieces. Van Gogh? Do not claim that morally ambiguous pieces of media are not art because they are not ‘pure.’
The Los Angeles Times article is a joke. It is a publicity stunt that should not even be acknowledged. What happened to investigative journalism? Why does the media continue to pursue purely rumor and mob mentality articles? The basis for the article is a disabled women’s civil lawsuit against Eastwood over the lack of handicapped restrooms in his Carmel resort. This is a total money scam, and publicity stunt.
All this said, I can see where this film could be very offensive to anyone who has become handicapped. An assumption can be drawn that all paralyzed people hate their circumstances. It should be up to the individual to decide. Everyone seems to want to get every one else’s business these days. Why? Autonomy of patients (or anyone) should be respected. If I had been permanently injured during the premiere of this movie, I would be incredibly offended. It would make an escape route just that more accessible.
The point of the movie is not to push an agenda of legal euthanasia. The point is to tell a compelling story that makes the audience ‘feel’. In the Brave New World that we all live in, media competes for the most striking story to gain ratings. This is just another example of this struggle. I agree that Million Dollar Baby not for all people (especially children), but I would not equate it to a Nazi propaganda film.