By Irtaza Ali
The issue of physician-assisted suicide has been hotly debated in the United States for decades. Jack Kevorkian, its most ardent supporter, conducted 130 assisted suicides in his lifetime. His belief was that a doctor’s “responsibilities include assisting their patients with death.” This debate was recently rekindled in New Mexico.
In the spring of 2012, Aja Riggs, a 49-year old uterine cancer patient, filed a suit in the Second District Court of Albuquerque, New Mexico, in which she demanded that her doctors be allowed to administer her a lethal injection if her pain became intolerable. Riggs became a plaintiff for a case that had been filed by the American Civil Liberties Union of New Mexico and Compassion & Choices, an end-of-life choice advocacy group. These two organizations had filed the case on behalf of New Mexico doctors Katherine Morris and Aroop Mangalik. Riggs was the only patient mentioned in the suit.
By Irtaza Ali
Professor Michael Mann, a scholar at Penn State, is at the center of a case that concerns research he conducted on global warming while teaching at the University of Virginia. Professor Mann comes from the school of thought that believes humans are responsible for global warming. Many believe that zealous scientists, like Mann, have been distorting data to support their conclusions. These allegations have resulted in multiple requests to review Mann’s research in the Prince William County Circuit Court in Mannasas, Virginia.
The issue began in 2010 when, Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli made a civil investigative demand requesting that the University of Virginia turn over research conducted by Mann during his employment at the institution. Cuccinelli believed that Mann had deceived taxpayers when requesting grants for his research by modifying his data to promote his theory. He is therefore at the forefront of an ongoing debate among global warming skeptics who believe scientists have been publishing skewed data to confirm the relationship between human activity and global warming.