Quebec Passes Landmark End-of-Life Care Bill, Canadian Broadcasting Co., June 5, 2014. An tremendous victory for death with dignity, the bill passed with an overwhelming 94 to 22 majority. "Sometimes when you are suffering in pain, one hour can feel like one week...The protection of the vulnerable is reflected in every aspect of this bill," said Parti Quebecois member of the National Assembly Veronique Hivon, who drafted the bill. For the full [...]
Honey -- Award Winning Italian Film by Valeria Golino. This powerful drama played in Chicago in early May, 2014. It tells the story of Irene, who has an unusual and secret profession. She tells people she's a student. In reality she helps terminally ill people die with dignity. As the film progresses, she develops a strong, conflicted relationship with one of her clients. The film is by famed Italian actress and director [...]
Do Not Resuscitate -- What Young Doctors Would Choose, in the New York Times, May 20, 2014. How an overwhelming percentage of doctors, even young ones, say they want no heroic measures at end-of-life. Says one, about resuscitation: "Doctors see a lot...you know too much, and you're much more wary."
A 'Code Death' For Dying Patients, in the New York Times, April 10, 2014, by Dr. Jessica Zitter. Describes sensible and compassionate procedures to ease the passing and comfort the families of dying patients in the intensive care unit.
New Mexico Must Stand Strong and Allow Physician-Assisted Suicide, in Huffington Post, March 21, 2014, by Steve Siebold. It's a mistake to refer to death with dignity as "suicide", but other than that this is a powerful and important piece.
We Have To Fight For The Right To Die, In Salon, March 19, 2014, by Mary Elizabeth Williams. A powerful last letter from an ailing Canadian man makes the case for "relief."
Extend Death With Dignity Nationwide, in Freethought Today, March 2014. A profound column by Annie Laurie Gaylor, about "the inhumanity of our society toward the dying." Highlights the vital importance of people knowing about the full range of end-of-life choices -- no one who is suffering intolerably should have to resort to violent means! Final Exit Network can help!
Sherwin Nuland, 'How We Die' Doctor, Dies at 83, in the New York Times, March 5, 2014. Obituary for Dr. Nuland, the author of the 1994 book How We Die, which "described in frank detail the processes by which life succumbs to violence, disease or old age." As Dr. Nuland wrote, "The dignity we seek in dying must be found in the dignity with which we have lived our lives."
Aid In Dying Movement Takes Hold In Some States, in the New York Times, February 8, 2014. The lead article in the New York Times on that day, showcasing how our movement has come of age. Focuses on the growing public support for death-with-dignity, and highlights Robert Mitton, suffering and near death in Colorado. "I am facing my imminent death", he is quoted as saying, and asks why people in Montana and [...]
Website for "Notes from the Waiting Room: Managing a Loved One's End-of-Life Hospitalization", by Bart Windrum. A detailed discussion about the realities of hospitalization for the end-of-life patient, with many tips for family members. His thesis is that hospitals don't provide "care" as laypeople understand it, but rather "bodily-repair services". Includes in-depth discussions about power-of-attorney documents and do-not-resuscitate orders. Concludes with an extended discussion of alternatives to dying in hospitals, and proposes [...]
Death With Dignity Gaining Life, in the Chicago Tribune, December 11, 2013. An interview with Dr. Daniel Samo of Chicago, who was one of the featured speakers at our program, "A Doctor's View of Death With Dignity", on December 8, 2013.
Year's End A Good Time To Consider End of Life Plans, by Barbara Brotman in the Chicago Tribune, December 9, 2013. Excellent article on the importance of getting those advance-directives done.
I Hope My Father Dies Soon. Scott Adams, the cartoonist and creator of Dilbert, rails on his blog against the evil of those who would vote against death with dignity laws. Powerful stuff. Published November 23, 2013.
How Doctor's Die: In coming to grips with their own mortality, they are showing the way for others, in the New York Times, November 20, 2013. A portrayal of Dr. Elizabeth McKinley, suffering from advanced cancer, who chose to forego aggressive treatment in favor of a better quality of life in her remaining time. Powerful and farsighted.
Cartoonist’s Tirade Poses Serious Questions About Dying — Chicago Tribune columnist Eric Zorn pondering Scott Adams’ blog post
Cartoonist's Tirade Poses Serious Questions About Dying, by columnist Eric Zorn, in the Chicago Tribune, November 27, 2013, pondering Scott Adams' blog post. "The issue isn't exactly front burner," writes Zorn. "Until, of course, you or those you love become terminally ill, and then it's on full boil."
Website for 'Knocking on Heaven's Door', by Katy Butler. A profile by the award-winning journalist of her father's extended and horrible dying process, followed by the more gentle passing of her mother. Argues forcefully for letting nature take its course when further medical treatment will yield only suffering, and for accepting death as natural. Offers much valuable advice for caregivers. Highly recommended. Here's the excellent book review from the New York Times, in [...]
Katy Butler, "Knocking on Heaven's Door", in the New York Times, September 8, 2013. A powerful review of the new book, Knocking On Heaven's Door: The Path to a Better Way of Death, by Katy Butler. Documents the suffering caused by aggressive but futile medical treatment at life's end, and posits a better way. Recommended.
The End -- by Non-Theist. from The Humanist, September/October 2013. An incredibly moving and powerful description of one man's decision to make a final exit before descending into the depths of Alzheimer's, by his wife.