A Massachusetts man's fight for the right to end his own life compassionately may be in jeopardy.
Doctor Roger Kligler, of Falmouth, filed a right-to-die lawsuit after being diagnosed with stage 4 prostate cancer. He had been given anywhere from five years to seven months to live.
With the help of advocacy group Compassion and Choices he filed the lawsuit against the Attorney General and the Cape and the Islands District Attorney seeking the right to have the option to end his own life.
“I want the court to give me the right to be able to make a choice,” said Klingler.
On Wednesday, a Suffolk Superior Court Judge heard a motion to dismiss the suit, with representatives for the attorney general and district attorney arguing the topic had already been voted down in 2012 and that it was better tackled by the legislature.
“Without the court legislating from the bench, we would be missing all of these procedural safeguards,” said Rob Quinan, Assistant Attorney General.
But Kligler’s team argues the medical profession would put safeguards in place, requiring two doctor’s approval, a terminal illness diagnosis with six months to live and a determination of mental competence.
“It would protect the prescribing physicians from a criminal prosecution,” said John Kappos, Klingler’s attorney.
Klinger says he loves his life and family but does not want to suffer.
“I want the court to be able to let me know that at the end of my life I don’t have to go through undue suffering,” said Klinger.