The "assisted suicide" lines used to be drawn more sharply for me. After all, I had in-the-trenches experience. My mother was a charter member of the Hemlock Society, the first national “right-to-die” organization.
In an excoriating piece in Truthdig, columnist Chris Hedge labels Hurricane Sandy “the Katrina of the North.” He begins and ends with 76-year-old Avgi Tzenis, whose house in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, was wrecked when three feet of water and sewage swept through it five weeks ago. She was widowed last year after nursing her husband through years of dementia, and has no idea how she’s going to pay for repairs.
“There’s an interesting story in the paper today about aging,” said my partner yesterday morning. He and I and I are inveterate fans of the Sunday New York Times Style section, where the lead story was that of Bob Bergeron, a therapist in New York whose suicide at 47 had taken everyone by surprise.
Bad-boy British novelist Martin Amis is in the news for proposing euthanasia "booths" on street corners where the old old could off themselves with "a martini and a medal.” Amis maintained that his comments were meant to be "satirical" rather than "glib", but there’s something to offend just about everyone in his prediction that “a population of demented very old people, like an invasion of terrible immigrants, [will be] stinking out the restaurants and cafes and shops.”