“A Life or Death Situation”
by Robin Marantz Henig
The New York Times Magazine
July 21, 2013
pages – 26 through 33, 42, & 50
To me, the Sunday New York Times was a little disappointing this week. There just weren’t that many stories that “grabbed” me. But just before I went to bed Sunday night, I started reading “A Life of Death Situation” and it was such a strong story that I ended up going to bed late so that I could finish it.
The story concerns Margaret Pabst Battin a bioethicist @ the University of Utah who has always been an advocate of allowing dying patients to decide whether they wish to continue to treatments to prolong their lives. Her views have become more nuanced since her husband, Brooke Hopkins (a retired English professor @ Utah) had a cycling accident and became a quadriplegic. All of sudden, Battin was confronted with the differences in theory and practice.
This is story is well written and very moving. What I particularly like about it is that the author does not pretend that there are any easy answers to the end-of-life dilemma. Instead, the article raises countless questions; each reader will have to find the answers for him- or herself.