Right to Die for the

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According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, "bills on assisted suicide were introduced in twenty-six states in 1997 and 1998...all defeated, usually dying in committee." During this same period, Virginia, Michigan and South Carolina passed new bans on assisted suicide, after Iowa and Rhode Island enacted bans in 1996, and Kansas and South Dakota recently "clarified their existing criminal statutes and added civil penalties for assisting a suicide." In 1999, thirty-eight states had specific statutes against assisted suicide, although "Oregon created an exception for terminally ill patients who fulfill certain guidelines," while eight forbid the practice by common law or interpretation of the state homicide statute, and four, Nevada, Hawaii, Utah and Wyoming have no clear law on the matter.

Those against the right to die see no distinction between pulling the plug to hasten death on patients depending on life support and providing lethal medication to dying patients. Those who support the right to die believe there is a moral line "between an active act by a physician to kill and passively letting nature take its course so that the underlying disease causes death." And then there are those who believe in both, allowing a patient to die with dignity off life support and allowing a patient to obtain assistance in death when he or she feels their physical condition is terminal. It is certain that this issue will continue to be debated in public opinion and courts for years to come.

Works Cited

Brennecke, Shari J. "Right to Die: An Overview" Gerontology Manual. http://otpt.ups.edu/Gerontological_Resources/Gerontology_Manual/Brennecke.html.(accessed 12-03-2003).

Chachere, Vickie. "Judge appoints professor as guardian for brain-damaged woman in Florida." AP Worldstream. November 01, 2003. http://ask.elibrary.com/getdoc.asp?querydocid=1P1:86544618&dtype=0~0&dinst=0&pubname=AP+Worldstream&author=VICKIE+CHACHERE%2C+Associated+Press+Writer&title=Judge+appoints+professor+as+guardian+for+brain%2Ddamaged+woman+in+Florida&date=11%2F01%2F2003&query=Terry+Schiavo+and+the+State+of+Florida%2E&maxdoc=30&idx=2&ctrlInfo=result%3ASR%3Aprod.(accessed 12-03-2003)

Cruzan v. Director, Missouri Dept. Of Health." Citation: 497 U.S. 261 (1990)

Concepts: Right to Die/State Police Powers. http://www.tourolaw.edu/patch/CaseSummary.html.(accessed 12-03-2003).

Doerflinger, Richard M. "An Uncertain Future for Assisted Suicide."

The Hastings Center Report. January 01, 1999.

Euthanasia Court Cases Rulings on Medical Killing." Human Life of Washington

http://www.humanlife.net/euthanasiaarticles/courtcases.html.

A accessed 12-03-2003).

Fackelmann, Kathy A. "The conscious mind: Karen Ann Quinlan case yields surprising scientific data." Science News. July 02, 1994.

King, Philip. "Washington v. Glucksberg: influence of the court in care of the terminally ill and physician-assisted suicide." Journal of Law and Health. June 22, 2000.

Reibstein. Larry. "Weighing the right to die." Newsweek. January 13, 1997.

Brennecke, Shari J. "Right to Die: An Overview" Gerontology Manual. http://otpt.ups.edu/Gerontological_Resources/Gerontology_Manual/Brennecke.html.(accessed 12-03-2003).

Fackelmann, Kathy A. "The conscious mind: Karen Ann Quinlan case yields surprising scientific data." Science News. July 02, 1994

Cruzan v. Director, Missouri Dept. Of Health." Citation: 497 U.S. 261 (1990)

Concepts: Right to Die/State Police Powers. http://www.tourolaw.edu/patch/CaseSummary.html.(accessed 12-03-2003).

Brennecke, Shari J. "Right to Die: An Overview" Gerontology Manual. http://otpt.ups.edu/Gerontological_Resources/Gerontology_Manual/Brennecke.html.(accessed 12-03-2003).

Euthanasia Court Cases Rulings on Medical Killing." Human Life of Washington

http://www.humanlife.net/euthanasiaarticles/courtcases.html.

A accessed 12-03-2003

King, Philip. "Washington v. Glucksberg: influence of the court in care of the terminally ill and physician-assisted suicide." Journal of Law and Health. June 22, 2000.

Chachere, Vickie. "Judge appoints professor as guardian for brain-damaged woman in Florida." AP Worldstream. November 01, 2003.

Doerflinger, Richard M. "An Uncertain Future for Assisted Suicide."

The Hastings Center Report. January 01, 1999.

Reibstein. Larry. "Weighing the right to die." Newsweek. January 13, 1997.