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April 15, 2005

Don't get Schiavo-ed!

No matter which side you took in the Schiavo case, it's clear that a living will would have concluded the matter toute suite.

With that in mind, I present you this living will template I came across in The Christian Century. It should take care of everything:

"I, (WRITE YOUR NAME HERE), do not want my body to be kept alive after my life is over. Please put a fork in me when I'm done. If I am incapacitated, I forbid all relatives from circulating footage of me on national television and on the Internet. If I'm unable to make medical decisions for myself, please ask (WRITE NAME OF SPOUSE OR TRUSTED LOVED ONE HERE) to make them for me. I don't want this person to kill me, even though I said so while we watched the hospital scenes in Million Dollar Baby. I want this person to reject any life-prolonging treatments if I permanently lose the ability to learn, communicate, sustain relationships and comprehend the world around me.

Like three-fourths of Americans, I believe in heaven. This doesn't mean I want religious extremists to march outside, compare me to Jesus and clamor to enter my bedroom with cups of water. Remind them there is a time to be born and a time to die; a time to mourn and a time to dance; a time to speak up and a time to butt out. On the off chance that politicians try to seize custody of me, or disparage the best judgement of (REWRITE NAME OF CHOSEN DECISION-MAKER HERE), please ask them to use their time more appropriately and productively. Ask them to improve Medicare and Medicaid.

Finally, please don't fight for my 'right to die.' Remind people that I already have that right. In fact, I have a biological imperative to die, barring any major advances in genetics or Botox. The trick is to live fully, take advantage of modern medicine without getting trapped by it and die at peace."

(Susan A. Neilsen, RNS, March 30)

Posted by Dan at April 15, 2005 09:55 AM

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Tracked on May 2, 2013 04:42 PM


Thanks for posting this. There is another, less calm shall we say, living will template making the rounds on the internet but I liked this one quite a lot. I went to Christian Century to see the source but couldn't find it - maybe you have to be a subscriber. Anyway, it doesn't matter.

Posted by: Julia at April 15, 2005 10:14 AM

Thank God I did this 10 years ago before it became a major issue.


Posted by: Alex at April 15, 2005 08:45 PM

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