The ghost of Jack Kevorkian for President's Physician: 2016
By age 18, most major brain development has taken place. Obviously there are exceptions, but those are few and far between.
A lack of brain development means that person is incapable of making fully rational decisions. I would no more trust a 13 year old to fully comprehend complex medical information than I would trust a child who has not yet learned the concept of object permanence with cooking on a grill.
Those mature adults who decide that they want to let themselves die a slow, painful death because a magical person in the sky says living is wrong are completely within their rights to make such a decision. They should not be allowed to make such a decision for someone else, though.
Killing yourself with your own stupidity and killing someone else are entirely different matters.
“The more you know, the harder it is to take decisive action. Once you become informed, you start seeing complexities and shades of gray. You realize that nothing is as clear and simple as it first appears. Ultimately, knowledge is paralyzing.” - Bill Watterson
Who Is Chicago Ted?
This is a hard case. No, not for us armchair physicians, jurists, and expert parents. It's really very easy for us. We know what's right!
But we conveniently weren't around. We just come around after all is said and done to pass our righteous judgment.
An 8 year old boy with cancer and extreme autism cannot express knowledge that he understands that the treatments are a good thing. I met a grown man a couple of weeks ago that's battling cancer. We played at a benefit for his medical costs sponsored by the American Cancer Society. He's now a friend of mine. He was there. The first time that I saw him I couldn't quite figure out what I was looking at. Proportioned as a human, his face was that of an extremely sick outer space alien. I pray that he beats the cancer and gets well. He's working very hard to achieve this. He takes his chemo treatments willingly.
Suppose that an 8 year old boy (that doesn't communicate verbally) doesn't want to take his treatments. It's not hard to imagine his Mother having to hold him down and fight with him to get him to take the shots. The shots that make him violently ill and look like an alien from Mars. I get the feeling that his Mother just couldn't bring herself to administer his treatments anymore. Maybe she should have contacted his doctors and told them that it was their turn to become her son's worst monsters. She certainly did become negligent with her son's care. Yet, 15% of the patients don't respond to treatment and die anyway.
People with severe autism don't do anything. They just sit there and rock back and forth for their entire lives. Maybe he just received the mercy that he needed so badly.
They never would have convicted his Mother if I was on the jury. I'd have hung it high and dry. A Mother-child relationship should never be that strained.
D0GBREATH, DOES THIS INAUGURAL GOWN MAKE MY ASS LOOK BIG?The jokes write themselves!
One of you will end up here next!