Friday, February 27, 2009

Georgia Case: When is assisted suicide murder?

A case in Georgia involves a group called “The Final Exit,” which on its website purports to:

**Serve people who are suffering intolerably from an irreversible condition which has become more than they can bear.

**Foster research to find new peaceful and reliable ways to self-deliver.

**Promote the use of advance directives.

**Advocate for individuals when their advance directives are not being honored.

Law enforcement in Georgia has arrested four individuals associated with the group in connection with the death of a 58 year old man.

Lots of points of view in a case like this, including that of the Center’s Bill Colby in the blurb below. What do you think?

Assisted suicide case in Georgia revives right-to-die debate
Greg Bluestein
Associated Press
February 27, 2009

Some legal experts said they hope details of the network's work would help stoke a deeper discussion over assisted suicide. William Colby, an attorney who is a fellow with the Center for Practical Bioethics, said prosecuting the group wouldn't support that goal.

"People are trying to understand how we navigate the end of our lives, and we need to keep talking about it," said Colby. "But trying to round up people in groups on either extreme end of our social spectrum is not necessarily the best way to move public dialogue."

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Blogger Pat said...

The facts seem unclear in the end of life cases that Final Exit participated in. If they broke laws and the public thinks the laws are draconian (and if online comments are an indication they do) this case will spur much needed discussion leading (hopefully) to revision of the laws. I do hope the media can refrain from sensationalizing the case. The issue of assisting someone to hasten their death is serious. It deserves thoughtful discussion not hyperbole.

Thursday, March 05, 2009  

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