just a guy made of dots and lines (crs) wrote,
just a guy made of dots and lines

"Death Panels"

So the guys talking about Death Panels, who hate the bill for that reason, are represented on The Daily Show by some woman in an interview that went over, and went out on the Internet unedited. And I watched it. And I realized, their complaint *can* be explained in terms that we can understand. I still disagree, but I understand now.

Her complaint, the one that actually came through in that interview: the bill provides positive incentives for doctors to discuss a living will with a patient, convincing them to have something on file saying what to do in the case they're incapacitated. She, and those like her, believe that in a time of good health, one is much more likely to say "yes, I don't want to go on living that way" than when faced with the actual situation.

Their problem is with living wills themselves; in some ways it's an extension of Terry Schiavo, but even worse; if Terry Schiavo had signed a living will asking to be removed from life support, these people would have argued that it should be ignored. I think. From what I hear in that interview.

So, they don't like living wills, and they really don't like the idea that more people will have them. It further validates what is, to them, a horrible weapon for a person to wield against their future selves... And in some ways, living wills provide the only legal path to assisted suicide in the country right now, albeit in extremely limited circumstances. And everyone knows what a great PR face Jack Kevorkian put on that issue.

So, I'll say this; while I disagree with the points, and I especially disagree with the way they are presenting their point... I do believe they're not necessarily making something out of nothing here; there is a bit of substance behind their complaint, and, if only we could have more civil conversations continuing where The Daily Show left off, we might find some common ground... eventually. Maybe.
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