The Daily News: June 16 Morning Edition

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The Daily News is a daily column that provides you with the latest news and why it’s important to you. Start making informed decisions about what’s going on in your world by reading the Daily News.

Do We Have A Right To Death?

What It’s About: Western governments have pledged to defend the right to life of their citizens. Recent events in the UK and Canada have forced us to ask whether protecting this right denies us the right to death:

  • A recent poll in the UK indicates that almost two-thirds of British doctors support assisted dying. The growing consensus is that, like abortion, a death can be botched and cause a patient more harm than if their death was assisted professionally.
  • Despite the request of doctors for assisted dying, a British High Judge has denied the request of an anorexic women to die in comfort and has ordered that she be force fed until she has recovered.
  • Across the Atlantic, the Canadian Supreme Court has determined that banning physicians from performing assisted suicide is unconstitutional as it discriminates against the physically disabled.
Why It’s Important: Death is an unfortunate part of life, an inevitable fate. The question of how and when we face our death has been a matter of significant social stigma in Western societies. In the cases linked below, the request for an assisted death has embodied a different aspect of the debate:
  • Does it apply to the elderly who are already near death?
  • Does it apply to those who are physically trapped in their own bodies?
  • Does it apply to those who are unhappy with their lives and wish an end to it?

The number of reasons for which one could request an assisted death prevents the development of a single solution. It also raises the question as to how much control does our government have over our bodies, and should it? Where do you stand on the issue?

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New Prosecutor For The International Criminal Court

What It’s About: Fatou Bensouda has been appointed as the new chief prosecutor for the International Criminal Court. Her appointment has arrived at a critical time as four of her fellow prosecutors have been imprisoned in Libya. The appointment of an African women to the prosecution has been seen by some as a means of deflecting criticism that the ICC has unfairly targeted African leaders.

Why It’s Important: The prosecutors of the ICC perform an important job; investigating and persecuting the individuals responsible for committing some of the most violent crimes of the past and current century. Although the appointment of a new prosecutor is not a rare event, Bensouda’s draws attention to both the composition of the ICC, and the type of individuals it prosecutes. African warlords have certainly been responsible for a great deal of bloodshed and suffering, but the question remains: why haven’t Western leaders been tried for war crimes?

Is there a double standard, or is there a difference between the conflicts waged by Kony and those of George W. Bush? What do you think?

Obama Promises To End Deportations of 800,000 Young Migrants

What It’s About: The “problem” of illegal immigrants is one that has troubled US legislators for years and led to the construction of a barrier along the US-Mexico border. On Friday Barack Obama announced that any illegal immigrants who can prove that they arrived in the United States before they were 16, and who have completed high school without a criminal record, will not be deported. It is not, however, a route to citizenship.

Why It’s Important: Many of the discussions featured in the articles linked below debate the impact Obama’s promise will have on the job market and citizenship of immigrants that have arrived in the United States illegally; especially Hispanics who represent its largest minority and most important voting bloc. Lost amongst these discussions however is the subject of US immigration policies in general:

  • Why are people forced to immigrate illegally?
  • Does this incentivize illegal immigration and devalue traditional forms of immigration (that may still result in rejection)?
  • Is the problem of illegal immigrants based on their illegality, or their status as immigrants?

Does Obama’s promise solve the underlying problems faced by immigrants to the United States, or does it gloss over them?

Other Important Stories:

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