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Amnorix
02-22-2005, 02:31 PM
So as you may or may not know, Oregon is the only state in the union that has a "right to die" law. Basically the law provides that a patient can request and receive a lethal dose of medication IF (1) the patient has no more than 6 months to live, and (2) two doctors certify that the patient is mentally competent to make the request.

Unsurprisingly, IMHO, the Bush Administration is fighting the law. Congress passed, and Bush signed, a law that basically makes it a federal crime for a doctor to prescribe a lethal dose of medication (trying to basically trump the Oregon law). The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals (which is very liberal) ruled that the feds couldn't do this, but now the Bush Administration has appealed it up to the Supreme Court, which has granted certiorari and agreed to hear the case.

IMHO the Court will split closely over this -- probably 5-4, and definitely not more than 6-3, one way or the other. Inevitably, conservatives who cry about "state's rights" never seem to want to allow state's rights when it comes to issues they are about. Liberals/democrats, meanwhile, tend to favor federal power, except when if it allows overturning issues they care about. Both sides have some hypocritical egg on their face on this issue...

So what do we think?

http://www.cnn.com/2005/LAW/02/22/scotus.assisted.suicide.ap/index.html

BIG_DADDY
02-22-2005, 02:43 PM
The right to die is a basic human right, nobody has the right to take that away, period.

Cochise
02-22-2005, 02:43 PM
I don't really have a problem with the law, so long as it's done properly. If we have a good standard of when the person is competent, and it's the patient requesting it, those kinds of things. I would say that I didnt have a problem (with reservations)

I don't think we should be doing it when the victim's consent is not express, like with the Florida woman they keep trying to pull the feeding tube on. But if someone wants to put together a living will for themselves then I wouldn't stop them.

Donger
02-22-2005, 02:43 PM
Personally, if these people want to off themselves, fine. But, I don't think that "doctors" should be involved in adminisitering death.

Amnorix
02-22-2005, 02:45 PM
Personally, if these people want to off themselves, fine. But, I don't think that "doctors" should be involved in adminisitering death.

So we should require people dying of cancer to arrange for a gun? Or risk screwing it up in a way that they risk suffering needlessly before they die?

I mean -- the question here is simple -- should society assist those who want to die, under certain circumstances?

Lefty_the_Right
02-22-2005, 02:54 PM
I think it is totally consistant with the party that says they believe in "States Rights" to allow the voters of Oregon to make the decision.

Which party was that again?

Donger
02-22-2005, 02:58 PM
I mean -- the question here is simple -- should society assist those who want to die, under certain circumstances?

Yes, but again, I don't think it is appropriate for medical doctors to kill people.

Amnorix
02-22-2005, 03:05 PM
Yes, but again, I don't think it is appropriate for medical doctors to kill people.

Then who should society appoint to "assist" them? Let's assume you've got an 85 year old widow with no family and incurable cancer. Should she (1) just guess what quantity of which pills would kill her, or (2) need to run down to her nearest gun dealer?

It seems to me that the more humane method is to allow medical experts to assist in making these decisions. REALIZING, of course, that any doctor who chooses not to participate in these kinds of decisions doesn't have to.

But let's face it -- doctors deal with death all the time. They counsel families who have had relatives suffer severe medical events. Should the family consider whether extraordinary measures will be used, or recommend a DNR form be filled out. Should the family consider removing life support? etc. etc. These aren't rare issues for doctors to deal with.

Donger
02-22-2005, 03:09 PM
Then who should society appoint to "assist" them? Let's assume you've got an 85 year old widow with no family and incurable cancer. Should she (1) just guess what quantity of which pills would kill her, or (2) need to run down to her nearest gun dealer?

It seems to me that the more humane method is to allow medical experts to assist in making these decisions. REALIZING, of course, that any doctor who chooses not to participate in these kinds of decisions doesn't have to.

But let's face it -- doctors deal with death all the time. They counsel families who have had relatives suffer severe medical events. Should the family consider whether extraordinary measures will be used, or recommend a DNR form be filled out. Should the family consider removing life support? etc. etc. These aren't rare issues for doctors to deal with.

Make up a new position, such as "Death Counselor" or something. I'm quite serious. I simply don't agree with the concept of doctors administering death.

I don't disagree that doctors deal with death every day. But dealing with it is different than causing it.

Duck Dog
02-22-2005, 03:14 PM
I agree with Oregon. It's a state issue and should be handled on a state level.

Misplaced_Chiefs_Fan
02-22-2005, 03:19 PM
I have to agree with Donger here.

For a doctor to proscribe a fatal dose of anything violates the first tenent of the Hippocratic Oath, that every doctor "professes" to believe in.

"Do no harm"

If they want to administer euthenasia, then they should not be called "doctors" any more, in my opinion. Let them take on whatever name they wish, but they should not practice medicine.

Lefty_the_Right
02-22-2005, 03:24 PM
If someone is terminaly ill, it isn't the doctor that is killing them.

Donger
02-22-2005, 03:27 PM
If someone is terminaly ill, it isn't the doctor that is killing them.

True, if nothing else intervenes. But, if a doctor administers a lethal injection, then that doctor is directly responsible for that person's death.

Amnorix
02-22-2005, 03:29 PM
"Do no harm"


Hell, forget that. If you want to rely on the ORIGINAL Hippocratic Oath:


http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/doctors/images/oath_hippocrates.jpg Hippocrates, the father of medicine <HR>
Hippocratic Oath -- Classical Version

I swear by Apollo Physician and Asclepius and Hygieia and Panaceia and all the gods and goddesses, making them my witnesses, that I will fulfil according to my ability and judgment this oath and this covenant:

To hold him who has taught me this art as equal to my parents and to live my life in partnership with him, and if he is in need of money to give him a share of mine, and to regard his offspring as equal to my brothers in male lineage and to teach them this art - if they desire to learn it - without fee and covenant; to give a share of precepts and oral instruction and all the other learning to my sons and to the sons of him who has instructed me and to pupils who have signed the covenant and have taken an oath according to the medical law, but no one else.

I will apply dietetic measures for the benefit of the sick according to my ability and judgment; I will keep them from harm and injustice.

I will neither give a deadly drug to anybody who asked for it, nor will I make a suggestion to this effect. Similarly I will not give to a woman an abortive remedy. In purity and holiness I will guard my life and my art.

I will not use the knife, not even on sufferers from stone, but will withdraw in favor of such men as are engaged in this work.

Whatever houses I may visit, I will come for the benefit of the sick, remaining free of all intentional injustice, of all mischief and in particular of sexual relations with both female and male persons, be they free or slaves.

What I may see or hear in the course of the treatment or even outside of the treatment in regard to the life of men, which on no account one must spread abroad, I will keep to myself, holding such things shameful to be spoken about.

If I fulfil this oath and do not violate it, may it be granted to me to enjoy life and art, being honored with fame among all men for all time to come; if I transgress it and swear falsely, may the opposite of all this be my lot.


Translation from the Greek by Ludwig Edelstein. From The Hippocratic Oath: Text, Translation, and Interpretation, by Ludwig Edelstein. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press, 1943.


http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/doctors/oath_classical.html

Donger
02-22-2005, 03:32 PM
Similarly I will not give to a woman an abortive remedy.

Oops!

Amnorix
02-22-2005, 03:36 PM
No oops. The morality of those that lives 3,000 years ago concerns me not in the slightest. In point of fact, if you want to follow by their moral credo, then you better start sharing your love with other males. :)

Donger
02-22-2005, 03:41 PM
No oops. The morality of those that lives 3,000 years ago concerns me not in the slightest. In point of fact, if you want to follow by their moral credo, then you better start sharing your love with other males. :)

Heh.

Just wasn't aware of that little tidbit.

Lefty_the_Right
02-22-2005, 03:44 PM
Wasn't he going against what God said in the Bible about abortions and unfaithful wives?

Misplaced_Chiefs_Fan
02-22-2005, 03:50 PM
No oops. The morality of those that lives 3,000 years ago concerns me not in the slightest. In point of fact, if you want to follow by their moral credo, then you better start sharing your love with other males. :)

Nah, I don't agree with ALL the Greek philosophers, but then again, even the ancient Greeks didn't agree with ALL the Greek philosophers. Students of Socrates and Plato were known to get in some serious knock-down drag-out fights when they met. Same with Euripidies and Aristotle. And damn few male philosophers agreed with Sappho. ;)

But, there's a lot of gold in those old philosophies if you're willing to actually read them, realize what they were saying, not only about their time but about (pretty close to) universal truths and see how they could apply in modern times.

Then again, some people find it easier to simply go with whatever someone else tells them to think than do the research and actually think for themselves.

Amnorix
02-22-2005, 03:56 PM
Wasn't he going against what God said in the Bible about abortions and unfaithful wives?

err....Hippocrates was born way before Christ, and he sure as heck wasn't a Greek Jew, so he wouldn't have given a rat's ass about the Bible... :)

Amnorix
02-22-2005, 03:58 PM
Nah, I don't agree with ALL the Greek philosophers, but then again, even the ancient Greeks didn't agree with ALL the Greek philosophers. Students of Socrates and Plato were known to get in some serious knock-down drag-out fights when they met. Same with Euripidies and Aristotle. And damn few male philosophers agreed with Sappho. ;)

But, there's a lot of gold in those old philosophies if you're willing to actually read them, realize what they were saying, not only about their time but about (pretty close to) universal truths and see how they could apply in modern times.

err....I don't dispute any of this. Heck, Hippocrates was a monumentally important thinker and person in the history of the world. But that doesn't mean I care about his morality, as express in certain parts of the oath.

Then again, some people find it easier to simply go with whatever someone else tells them to think than do the research and actually think for themselves.

That last time I was accused of this was approximately...er...never, so don't you worry about that one.

Mr. Laz
02-22-2005, 04:00 PM
The right to die is a basic human right, nobody has the right to take that away, period.

Wanna bet Bush tries?

Misplaced_Chiefs_Fan
02-22-2005, 04:04 PM
That last time I was accused of this was approximately...er...never, so don't you worry about that one.

Nah, I enjoy reading your takes on things. I enjoy talking with people who can "discuss" rather than simply "scream" when people take differing sides.

Which was the Socratic method of debate, IIRC ;)


Curse me for being a historian. . .

Lefty_the_Right
02-22-2005, 04:36 PM
err....Hippocrates was born way before Christ, and he sure as heck wasn't a Greek Jew, so he wouldn't have given a rat's ass about the Bible... :)

I was speaking of the OT, not the NT, so I'm not sure why you thought I was referencing Christ?

Amnorix
02-22-2005, 04:43 PM
I was speaking of the OT, not the NT, so I'm not sure why you thought I was referencing Christ?

I didn't think you were referencing Christ. But Greek Orthodox is a christian religion, and I didn't know if you knew he pre-dated Christ, so I threw it out there.

I answered the OT issue by indicating he was nto a Jew. So far as I know, only Jews believed in or followed the Old Testament in any way, shape or form prior to the founding of Christianity.

If you wish, I'll rephrase -- he was neither Jewish, Christian nor Muslim, and therefore the Bible was completely irrelevant to him.

Lefty_the_Right
02-22-2005, 04:47 PM
So what we was he reffering to when he said: "Similarly I will not give to a woman an abortive remedy. In purity and holiness I will guard my life and my art."?

What religion was he reffering to when used the word "holiness"?

Just asking, you are obviously more knowledgeable on the subject.

Amnorix
02-22-2005, 04:52 PM
Hippocrates was something like 500 or 1,000 years BC. So far as I know, he believed in the typical Greek pantheon of Gods (or as incorporated into the Roman Gods).


He is considered the father of modern medicine because he advocated a scientific, rather than a religious, approach to addressing illness, but I dunno if that meant he wasn't otherwise particularly religious. Certainly some great scientists have also been very religious. No clue what category of religiousness he falls into.

But he wasn't Jewish, Christian or Muslim, so whatever his religion, it wasn't based on the Bible.

Donger
02-22-2005, 04:56 PM
So what we was he reffering to when he said: "Similarly I will not give to a woman an abortive remedy. In purity and holiness I will guard my life and my art."?

What religion was he reffering to when used the word "holiness"?

Just asking, you are obviously more knowledgeable on the subject.

Ermmm, all you have to do is read the oath...

"I swear by Apollo Physician and Asclepius and Hygieia and Panaceia and all the gods and goddesses."

Lefty_the_Right
02-22-2005, 04:58 PM
Ermmm, all you have to do is read the oath...

"I swear by Apollo Physician and Asclepius and Hygieia and Panaceia and all the gods and goddesses."

Gotcha.

Amnorix
02-22-2005, 05:11 PM
Ermmm, all you have to do is read the oath...

"I swear by Apollo Physician and Asclepius and Hygieia and Panaceia and all the gods and goddesses."

err...yeah, that too... :doh!::doh!::doh!::doh!::doh!::doh!:

Donger
02-22-2005, 05:17 PM
err...yeah, that too... :doh!::doh!::doh!::doh!::doh!::doh!:

ROFL

BTW, Amno, I HATE your new avvy.

Garcia Bronco
02-22-2005, 07:30 PM
Personally, if these people want to off themselves, fine. But, I don't think that "doctors" should be involved in adminisitering death.

Agreed.

Amnorix
02-22-2005, 07:40 PM
ROFL

BTW, Amno, I HATE your new avvy.

Yeah, I kinda figured most would. :shrug: :p

KCWolfman
02-22-2005, 08:34 PM
Then who should society appoint to "assist" them? .

Nope, the person should have the dignity to kill themselves and not burden a loved one with the guilt for the rest of their lives or create a job exclusively for killing others to be continually misinterpreted as Kevorkian did with his wacked out reasons he believed diseases to be terminal such as chronic fatigue syndrome and depression.

If your life is so horrible, kill yourself. Don't make others responsible for your actions even after you are dead.

Garcia Bronco
02-22-2005, 09:18 PM
Nope, the person should have the dignity to kill themselves and not burden a loved one with the guilt for the rest of their lives or create a job exclusively for killing others to be continually misinterpreted as Kevorkian did with his wacked out reasons he believed diseases to be terminal such as chronic fatigue syndrome and depression.

If your life is so horrible, kill yourself. Don't make others responsible for your actions even after you are dead.

Yep

Amnorix
02-23-2005, 06:49 AM
Nope, the person should have the dignity to kill themselves and not burden a loved one with the guilt for the rest of their lives or create a job exclusively for killing others to be continually misinterpreted as Kevorkian did with his wacked out reasons he believed diseases to be terminal such as chronic fatigue syndrome and depression.

If your life is so horrible, kill yourself. Don't make others responsible for your actions even after you are dead.

I believe (not 100% sure) that the Oregon law is assisted suicide. I'm assuming the doctors set you up with what you need, but the final act (pushing a button or taking the pills or whatever) is something you need to do yourself.

Let's assume the above is true (again, think so but not sure). Is that sufficient for you? Or does kill yourself mean needing to take a gun to your own head or something?

whoman69
02-23-2005, 11:11 AM
I will never understand how forcing someone to continue suffering is a Christian virtue. Let me add this to my list of things the catholic church is behind the times on.

KCWolfman
02-23-2005, 03:59 PM
I believe (not 100% sure) that the Oregon law is assisted suicide. I'm assuming the doctors set you up with what you need, but the final act (pushing a button or taking the pills or whatever) is something you need to do yourself.

Let's assume the above is true (again, think so but not sure). Is that sufficient for you? Or does kill yourself mean needing to take a gun to your own head or something?
Why do you need a doctor then? Go buy a bunch of sleeping pills and eat them down with a 5th of a smooth vodka. Spend a few extra bucks on the liquor and get the good stuff.

Legalizing the act leads to interpretation, interpretation leads to failure to comply with the original intent of the act. Dr. Kevorkian killed (sorry, assisted in killing) people without terminal illnesses because he felt they couldn't function properly in society with their disease. He moved from assisted killer to arbitrator of your life value.

KCWolfman
02-23-2005, 03:59 PM
I will never understand how forcing someone to continue suffering is a Christian virtue. Let me add this to my list of things the catholic church is behind the times on.
Not helping someone kill themselves is forcing them to suffer? Let me add this to my list of things the liberal extremists horribly interpret.