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Kevorkian: The Right to Die and Other 9th Amendment Freedoms

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Zaritsky raises the issue of our inalienable right to commit suicide – whether ill or not.  Kevorkian considers laws that ban suicide and iatric euthanasia "worse than immoral.  They are downright illegal."  In Cornucopia, Kevorkian defends the Ninth Amendment as "the twenty-one most important words in the U.S. Constitution."

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Human rights are not limited to those named in the Constitution, and laws that block those rights are unconstitutional.  Just as a woman has a natural born right to abort a fetus, and everyone has a natural right to choose whom to love and marry, all humans have a right to choose the timing and manner of their own demise.  In Cornucopia, Kevorkian details several natural rights that he deems the "hallmark of a truly enlightened democracy."  He prefaces them with:

"The first one listed below subsumes all the others which are mere corollaries, and its emphasized qualifying admonition also pertains to all of them.  Therefore, I have a basic natural right:

  • To do or not to do and to say or not to say anything, anywhere, to anybody, at any time, in any way, so long as anyone else and/or his or her property are not verifiably threatened or harmed, and no personal obligation is imposed on anybody without the latter's consent;
  • To choose with whom and/or what to associate and/or deal, and whom or what to shun;
  • To refuse to cooperate with and/or participate in any coercive endeavor;
  • To choose where, when, and how to live and to die;
  • To express openly anywhere, at any time, in any way, and by any means one's opinion;
  • To possess and/or carry anything on one's person;
  • To create and/or destroy anything of one's own;
  • To eschew public or religious education for one's children to be tutored privately;
  • To operate any vehicle without using helmets or belts;
  • To choose to indulge in mutually voluntary commercial or recreational coitus;
  • To choose whom one will live with, love, and/or marry;
  • To choose to do anything that may affect one's own body externally or internally, including the purchase of another's or the sale of one's own, bodily organ(s) or part(s) thereof for medical purposes;
  • To choose to read and/or write anything, for any purpose, and to create and/or see any visual presentation;
  • To choose to legally procure and to display or to destroy one's private property, or on property for use by the public, any symbols or flags of any group or nation;
  • Etc., etc., etc."

    Dr. Jack Kevorkian's compassionate and common sense approach to ending human suffering is but one facet of his decades-long advocacy of the Ninth Amendment.  Like Henry David Thoreau, Nelson Mandela, and Aung San Suu Kyi, Kevorkian was wrongfully imprisoned for advocating human rights.  He warned the audience, "To be active, you must be committed.  To be committed is dangerous."  That is especially true in a police state with the highest incarceration rate in the world.

    For more information, see this partial international list of right-to-die organizations or this one.  Also recommended is Susan Stern's 2005 award-winning documentary, The Self Made Man.

  • Cited in the Tampa Bay Examiner.

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    In 2004, Rady Ananda joined the growing community of citizen journalists. Initially focused on elections, she investigated the 2004 Ohio election, organizing, training and leading several forays into counties to photograph the 2004 ballots. She officially served at three recounts, including the 2004 recount. She also organized and led the team that audited Franklin County Ohio's 2006 election, proving the number of voter signatures did not match official results. Her work appears in three books.

    Her blogs also address religious, gender, sexual and racial equality, as well as environmental issues; and are sprinkled with book and film reviews on various topics. She spent most of her working life as a researcher or investigator for private lawyers, and five years as an editor.

    She graduated from The Ohio State University's School of Agriculture in December 2003 with a B.S. in Natural Resources.

    All material offered here is the property of Rady Ananda, copyright 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009. Permission is granted to repost, with proper attribution including the original link.

    "In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act." Tell the truth anyway.

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    I've long believed that among the greatest liv... by GLloyd Rowsey on Sunday, Feb 8, 2009 at 7:52:16 PM
    Spain is still debating iatric euthanasia, but som... by Rady Ananda on Sunday, Feb 8, 2009 at 8:35:36 PM
     The 9th & 10th Amendments work together.... by Darren Wolfe on Sunday, Feb 8, 2009 at 9:26:37 PM
    ;-)And I encourage folks to read this quicklink Da... by Rady Ananda on Sunday, Feb 8, 2009 at 9:39:56 PM
    I can't think of a cabal more destructive to t... by Rady Ananda on Wednesday, Feb 11, 2009 at 9:28:09 PM
    Hardly! The deeper purpose behind this antagonism ... by Katrin R. on Friday, Feb 13, 2009 at 2:39:55 AM
    The best parallel I can point out to describe the ... by Katrin R. on Friday, Feb 13, 2009 at 3:02:01 AM
    It has nothing to do with the subject of choice an... by Katrin R. on Friday, Feb 13, 2009 at 3:15:41 AM
    Darren's statement that; "The powers of the gov... by tabonsell on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 2:57:11 PM
    "The powers delegated by the proposed Constit... by Darren Wolfe on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 8:17:14 PM
    I am wholly impressed.  In fact, you've i... by Rady Ananda on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 9:21:22 PM
    When you get a copy of the Federalist Papers pleas... by tabonsell on Tuesday, Feb 10, 2009 at 2:10:28 PM
    Necessary and Proper?More difficult, however, is w... by Darren Wolfe on Tuesday, Feb 10, 2009 at 7:43:50 PM
    People have got to start thinking when it comes to... by tabonsell on Tuesday, Feb 10, 2009 at 3:52:58 PM
    Getting rid of the FCC, FAA, & especially he I... by Darren Wolfe on Tuesday, Feb 10, 2009 at 7:28:31 PM
    If you want to read some seriously prophetic paper... by Darren Wolfe on Tuesday, Feb 10, 2009 at 7:54:38 PM
    Darren, this will be a fascinating read, I am sure... by Rady Ananda on Wednesday, Feb 11, 2009 at 9:24:12 PM
    He wanted to keep the Articles of Confederation:&n... by Darren Wolfe on Thursday, Feb 12, 2009 at 9:53:31 AM
    the more I stick around here, the more ignorant I ... by Rady Ananda on Thursday, Feb 12, 2009 at 9:50:35 PM
    Do those articles remain? Darren at the top of you... by Brett Paatsch on Thursday, Feb 12, 2009 at 11:16:30 PM
    link to Articles of Confederation http://avalon.la... by Rady Ananda on Friday, Feb 13, 2009 at 6:55:26 PM
    I had found the Articles of Confederation online a... by Brett Paatsch on Friday, Feb 13, 2009 at 9:05:19 PM
    here's a thread by Darren you may like: The Nu... by Rady Ananda on Saturday, Feb 14, 2009 at 8:07:31 PM
    Amendment IX   The enumeration in the Consti... by Brett Paatsch on Sunday, Feb 8, 2009 at 9:40:38 PM
    Just kidding.  I personally know someone who assi... by Rady Ananda on Sunday, Feb 8, 2009 at 11:02:36 PM
    .... by Brett Paatsch on Sunday, Feb 8, 2009 at 11:25:01 PM
    That is a fantastic photograph you took of the doc... by Katrin R. on Sunday, Feb 8, 2009 at 11:10:17 PM
    Rady I want to challenge you a bit, you wrote:(1) ... by Brett Paatsch on Sunday, Feb 8, 2009 at 11:21:50 PM
    ' Just as a woman has a natural born right to ... by Katrin R. on Sunday, Feb 8, 2009 at 11:41:17 PM
    Katrin ~ thanks for the photo kudos. I hear your d... by Rady Ananda on Sunday, Feb 8, 2009 at 11:54:13 PM
    This talk about rights is interesting.  Has a... by Doc "Old Codger" McCoy on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 12:41:40 AM
    This is the conclusion I have come to. I DON'T... by Katrin R. on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 1:52:55 AM
    If we just pay heed to a lot of what the Doc says,... by GLloyd Rowsey on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 7:34:45 AM
    I like your comment very, very much.I need to clar... by Katrin R. on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 9:45:34 AM
    and very well put, Old Codger.... by GLloyd Rowsey on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 7:24:58 AM
    yep, the issue is not clearcut; caveats must be dr... by Rady Ananda on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 1:09:46 PM
    In Oregon, this law went into effect on 1996, and ... by Katrin R. on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 3:04:55 AM
    Most doctors are very decent, and good, and even w... by Katrin R. on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 3:40:17 AM
    Can you collect these posts and send them to Washi... by GLloyd Rowsey on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 10:24:13 AM
    and people are just so misguided and don't rea... by Katrin R. on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 10:48:00 AM
    And I'm not really a movie nut, but did you se... by GLloyd Rowsey on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 12:17:46 PM
    Thanks for this article.  One of Dr. K's ... by Michael Richardson on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 10:18:53 AM
    You've got a legal question or two hanging, if... by GLloyd Rowsey on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 12:32:26 PM
    okay, here it is in all its length.  My responses... by Rady Ananda on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 12:57:21 PM
    There are some good quotes in the article from tha... by Rady Ananda on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 1:12:02 PM
    Why do people think a little blob in the womb of a... by Dennis Kaiser on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 3:10:57 PM
    People need to realize why we have a Bill of Right... by tabonsell on Monday, Feb 9, 2009 at 3:31:11 PM
    Sorry, but it should be George Mason, not James. ... by tabonsell on Tuesday, Feb 10, 2009 at 1:13:18 PM
    I understand how errors like that can happen, they... by Brett Paatsch on Tuesday, Feb 10, 2009 at 8:51:53 PM
    thanks for broaching it, Brett.okay, I got some mo... by Rady Ananda on Wednesday, Feb 11, 2009 at 12:29:04 AM
    Tom Paine's Rights of Man, and Bertrand Russel... by Brett Paatsch on Wednesday, Feb 11, 2009 at 7:16:46 AM
    that's an interesting idea, Brett; I have to c... by Rady Ananda on Wednesday, Feb 11, 2009 at 9:20:12 PM
    the social creatures are humans with the capacitie... by Brett Paatsch on Thursday, Feb 12, 2009 at 8:19:00 PM
    I am assuming, because of you original article, th... by Rady Ananda on Friday, Feb 13, 2009 at 7:09:16 PM
    like Bush and Cheney and indeed like many others i... by Brett Paatsch on Friday, Feb 13, 2009 at 9:27:48 PM
    "I don't think nature (apart from humans ... by GLloyd Rowsey on Saturday, Feb 14, 2009 at 6:54:26 AM
    That is, key or core to understanding where rights... by Brett Paatsch on Saturday, Feb 14, 2009 at 7:16:56 PM
    I think your comment is very good, and very import... by Katrin R. on Saturday, Feb 14, 2009 at 9:31:55 PM
    Using click here we get this: Section 8. The Congr... by Brett Paatsch on Tuesday, Feb 10, 2009 at 10:16:17 PM
    himself to say paragraph 18 not 16.... by Brett Paatsch on Tuesday, Feb 10, 2009 at 10:28:54 PM

     

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