We live in a time when shocking new developments in our modern world aren't so shocking anymore. It has become a daily occurrence to hear, see, or witness something so outstanding we are left in awe. Most recently, we have been informed that a new invention is possibly on the horizon and the inventor's name is 'Dr. Death.' But who is the man, and how did he attain such a name?

Behind the mask

'Dr. Death' - or as he is more professionally known, Dr. Philip Nitschke, is an Australian humanist and physician who made headlines recently after one of his recent inventions.

Nitschke is no stranger to controversy and has been in the public eye before, after statements he made expressing his pro-choice views and his openness to euthanasia.

What he has done

The Australian physician has created a machine that supposedly kills you painlessly in five minutes. The machine has been named the 'Sacro' and can be printed by a 3D printer. There is no news yet as to whether the machine will be implemented for scientific, medical, or governmental usage yet, however, it has gathered a lot of public attention.

What he wishes to achieve

Nitschke has always been a firm believer in the freedom of choice when it comes to euthanasia. Euthanasia is the act of painlessly taking your own life on your own terms.

Euthanasia is only legal in certain places, an is often held under severe scrutiny from pro-life supporters.

His overall goal is to provide a painless way for people to take their own life, on their own terms. As he supports the movement for euthanasia, he emphasizes that the person must be of sound mind and have a good understanding of exactly what it is they are doing.

Suicide, as a topic, has always been rather taboo. It has been taught to us from an early age that suicide is not a viable option and that instead, we should look to bettering the situation instead of removing ourselves from it. Nitschke has been against this viewpoint since he is of the belief that freedom of choice applies to whether you should be allowed to take our own life or not.

Is it correct?

We have to ask the fabled question: is death okay if the person requesting it is fully aware of what they are doing and aware of the consequences of their actions? It is something that is completely unique to each individual and how they view the idea of death. Many people who have beliefs centered around religion will be opposed to the idea since a widely taught belief for them is that God has gifted us our lives and we should not waste them in such a way. On the other hand, people who do not have religious beliefs may be more inclined to see this as a personal choice - and not something that can be decided by someone else.

Nitschke's invention puts a lot of emphasis on the moral aspect of it.

He believes that it is a method that allows a pain-free and consensual option which gives an alternative to people who may use painful or violent ways to take their own life.

What might this mean for us

If his idea comes to fruition, we may see less stigma towards suicide both in the media and society as a whole. However, we have to also acknowledge the possible negative implications that may come from allowing suicide to be seen as acceptable. This could cause more people to assume suicide is a more viable alternative to their situation.

The silver lining is the ability to allow people, with life-threatening illnesses, to take complete control over their lives — and deaths. Some people have made this choice in the past and have elected to take their own life regardless of medical supervision.

Ultimately, the debate as to whether this practice is acceptable will continue to rage on. An ultimatum must be reached as to how valuable human a life is, and whether we have the ultimate decision as to choosing to take our own life. Nitschke's invention may be the development needed in order to strike a balance between those who oppose it, and those who believe it is the freedom of choice.