Academic journal article The Hastings Center Report

How Slippery the Slope?

Academic journal article The Hastings Center Report

How Slippery the Slope?

Article excerpt

Managed care was what the nurse in the white cap did for you when you were hospitalized for ten days for your hernia repair; Arthur Caplan had never appeared on Nightline--there was no Nightline, and assisted suicide was still an oxymoron when the New Jersey Supreme Court handed down its ruling In Re Quinlan twenty years ago in April.

Everyone from Joseph and Julia Quinlan, parents of the late Karen Ann Quinlan, to Yale surgeon Sherwin Nuland, whose book How We Die has made death a best seller fist staple, gathered in Princeton, N.J., 12 and 13 April, for a meeting billed Quinlan: A Twenty Year Retrospective. The two-day program was as much a tribute to the Quinlans, the late justice Richard Hughes, Chief Justice of the "Quinlan Court," Quinlan attorney Paul Armstrong, and the Cruzan family, as it was a bioethics meeting. Yet the gathering of the bioethics clan, including the Center's Daniel Callahan and Bruce Jennings, Arthur Caplan, George Annas, and neurologists Ronald Cranford, Fred Plum, and Julius Korein, and David Rothman, focused as much on the recent assisted suicide decisions of the federal Second and Ninth Circuit Courts as it did on the Quinlan case. …

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