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Supreme Court of the United States

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Euthanasia

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Can Glucksberg Survive Lawrence? Another Look At The End Of Life And Personal Autonomy, Yale Kamisar Jan 2008

Can Glucksberg Survive Lawrence? Another Look At The End Of Life And Personal Autonomy, Yale Kamisar

Articles

In Washington v. Glucksberg, the Court declined to find a right to physician-assisted suicide ("PAS") in the Constitution. Not a single Justice dissented. One would expect such a ruling to be quite secure. But Lawrence v. Texas, holding that a state cannot make consensual homosexual conduct a crime, is not easy to reconcile with Glucksberg. Lawrence certainly takes a much more expansive view of substantive due process than did Glucksberg. It is conceivable that the five Justices who made up the Lawrence majority-all of whom still sit on the Court-might overrule Glucksberg. For various reasons, however, this seems improbable. Unlike ...


On The Meaning And Impact Of The Physician-Assisted Suicide Cases. (Symposium: Physician-Assisted Suicide: Facing Death After Glucksberg And Quill), Yale Kamisar Jan 1998

On The Meaning And Impact Of The Physician-Assisted Suicide Cases. (Symposium: Physician-Assisted Suicide: Facing Death After Glucksberg And Quill), Yale Kamisar

Articles

I read every newspaper article I could find on the meaning and impact of the U.S. Supreme Court's June 1997 decisions in Washington v. Glucksberg' and Vacco v. Quill.2 I came away with the impression that some proponents of physician-assisted suicide (PAS) were unable or unwilling publicly to recognize the magnitude of the setback they suffered when the Court handed down its rulings in the PAS cases.


Physician-Assisted Suicide: The Problems Presented By The Compelling, Heartwrenching Case, Yale Kamisar Jan 1998

Physician-Assisted Suicide: The Problems Presented By The Compelling, Heartwrenching Case, Yale Kamisar

Articles

Now that the U.S. Supreme Court has upheld New York and Washington state laws prohibiting the aiding of another to commit suicide,2 the spotlight will shift to the state courts, the state legislatures and state referenda. And once again proponents of physician-assisted suicide (PAS) will point to a heartwrenching case, perhaps the relatively rare case where a dying person is experiencing unavoidable pain (i.e., pain that not even the most skilled palliative care experts are able to mitigate), and ask: What would you want done to you if you were in this person's shoes?


The Future Of Physician-Assisted Suicide, Yale Kamisar Jan 1998

The Future Of Physician-Assisted Suicide, Yale Kamisar

Articles

I believe that when the Supreme Court handed down its decisions in 1997 in Washington v. Glucksberg and Vacca v. Quill, proponents of physician-assisted suicide (PAS) suffered a much greater setback than many of them are able or willing to admit.


Physician Assisted Suicide: A Bad Idea, Yale Kamisar Jan 1996

Physician Assisted Suicide: A Bad Idea, Yale Kamisar

Articles

It would be hard to deny that there is a great deal of support in this country - and ever-growing support - for legalizing physician-assisted suicide (PAS). Why is this so? I believe there are a considerable number of reasons. I shall discuss five common reasons - and explain why I do not find any of them convincing.


The 'Right To Die': On Drawing (And Erasing) Lines, Yale Kamisar Jan 1996

The 'Right To Die': On Drawing (And Erasing) Lines, Yale Kamisar

Articles

Until this year, no state or federal appellate court had ever held that there was a right to assisted suicide no matter how narrow the circumstances or stringent the conditions. In 1996, however, within the span of a single month, two federal courts of appeals so held; in an 8-3 majority of the Ninth Circuit (sitting en banc) in Compassion in Dying v. Washington and a three-judge panel of the Second Circuit in Quill v. Vacco. What heartened proponents of a right to physician-assisted suicide even more, and pleased those resistant to the idea even less, was that the two ...


When Is There A Constitutional 'Right To Die'? When Is There No Constitutional 'Right To Live'?, Yale Kamisar Jan 1991

When Is There A Constitutional 'Right To Die'? When Is There No Constitutional 'Right To Live'?, Yale Kamisar

Articles

When I am invited to participate in conferences on the "right to die," I suspect that the organizers of such gatherings expect me to fill what might be called the " 'slippery slope' slot" on the program or, more generally, to articulate the "conservative" position on this controversial matter. These expectations are hardly surprising. The "right to die" is a euphemism for what almost everybody used to call a form of euthanasia-" passive" or "negative" or "indirect" euthanasia-and some thirty years ago, in the course of raising various objections to proposed euthanasia legislation, I advanced the "thin edge of the wedge ...