Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Nature Finally Intervened to Relieve Sam Golubchuk

Sam Golubchuk won't have to wait until the end of September to hear his family argue that he ought to remain on life support no matter how long it took him to rot into oblivion. Nature finally overwhelmed the best of medical science and kicked Sam off life support.

Golubchuk's family who, unlike Sam, weren't rotting alive felt that Sam's parting should be in God's hands. The part they left out (and isn't there always one?) is that the only thing keeping their father out of God's hands these past many months was an array of machines and products pumped into the old guy that allowed his heart to keep beating after the rest of him had gone wherever one goes at the end.

The Golubchuk case strained medical and legal ethics. A number of physicians at Winnipeg's Grace Hospital resigned rather than keep putting the old man through procedures they deemed futile and grotesque. And the Manitoba courts, instead of expediting the hearing of the family's demands to keep Sam going no matter what, simply moved the trial date from December to late September. I think a courageous judge would have given them two weeks to get their witnesses together and argue their case. There's no way of knowing for sure but I suspect the Winnipeg judges just decided to kick the can, with Sam inside, right down the road, hoping it would be over before the trial date ever rolled around.

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