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Other Major End-of-Life Court Cases
Posted on 10/21/2003 9:14:26 PM PDT by ambrose
other major end-of-life court cases
October 16, 2003
Besides the 13-year-old legal battle over the life of Terri Schiavo, a half-dozen other landmark cases have helped shape today's end-of-life laws. The cases all show that courts have been cautious when it comes to granting families permission to let their loved ones die. If possible, judges try not to get involved, preferring to let nature, families and doctors resolve a patient's fate. Important cases include:
The 1975 Karen Ann Quinlan case. The 21-year-old New Jersey woman lapsed into a coma and twice stopped breathing for about 15 minutes, apparently after taking tranquilizers and alcohol. Her parents successfully argued to a state court for the right to stop prolonging her life through extraordinary means. She died in 1985.
The 1983 Nancy Cruzan case. The 17-year-old flew 35 feet out of her car in an accident and stopped breathing for nearly 20 minutes before she was resuscitated. As with Quinlan, doctors said she could exist indefinitely by artificial means but had no chance of regaining consciousness. Her parents wanted to unhook her respirator, but Missouri officials objected that the action was tantamount to criminal homicide. Cruzan was the first right-to-die case the U.S. Supreme Court heard, and the justices found 5-4 that she had a constitutionally protected right to refuse treatment. Cruzan died in 1990, nine days after her feedings ceased.
(Excerpt) Read more at sun-sentinel.com ...
TOPICS: News/Current Events
posted on 10/21/2003 9:14:26 PM PDT
I believe that both Quinlan and Cruzan were hopelessly brain dead whereas Terri Schiavo is nowhere near that state. In fact, I've read that Terri is aware of what is going on around her but possibly unable to coordinate a response at this point. Physical rehabilitation could help, but her husband has refused to authorize the treatment.
Some 35 years ago, a good friend's car was crushed by a tractor trailer. She died at the scene but was revived within 5 or 10 minutes. Her body was terribly crushed. Nearly every bone broken. She also suffered brain damage.
This friend spent two years in hospitals and rehab centers. I remember thinking back then that it would have been better if the paramedics had let this formerly vibrant and beautiful woman die in peace. She could not walk, she could not talk, dress herself, feed herself or care for herself.
Today, my friend is totally independent has a job and is full of life. She would choose life, even though she may have believed differently before the accident.
Live every moment you have. Life is fleeting, the alternative is eternal!
>> other major end-of-life court cases
Terri Schiavo was not an "end-of-life" case. She was not dying.
posted on 10/21/2003 10:02:04 PM PDT
She was not dying.
Could have fooled me, given all the hysterics exhibited on here over the past several days.
posted on 10/21/2003 10:03:07 PM PDT
I wonder how long you would last if you were deprived of nourishment and water for 6 days. Not a diet I'd like to go on.
posted on 10/21/2003 10:10:20 PM PDT
(PLEASE DO something to save Terri Schiavo: email, call, fax, vigil,pray, GOD SAVE TERRI)
>> Could have fooled me
I addressed only the falsified premise of your post. What fools you is your business and of no interest in forum.
posted on 10/21/2003 11:24:12 PM PDT
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