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History of the ’90s podcast: Tracy Latimer and the euthanasia debate

This is a photo of Robert Latimer and daughter Tracy  at home. .
This is a photo of Robert Latimer and daughter Tracy at home. . CP Photo

In October 1993, Saskatchewan farmer Robert Latimer pumped exhaust fumes into the cab of a pickup truck, ending the life of his severely disabled 12-year-old daughter.

He claimed it was a mercy killing and that he only wanted to end Tracy’s constant pain.

On this episode of History of the ’90s, host Kathy Kenzora looks back at the heated debate that surrounded the death of Tracy Latimer.

READ MORE: Robert Latimer timeline

The subject of euthanasia was fiercely debated in the ’90s.  Every few months, it seemed we heard news that Dr. Jack Kevorkian had helped another terminally-ill person end their life in the United States.

FULL STORY: Waiting for the Right to Die
FULL STORY: Waiting for the Right to Die

In Canada, Sue Rodriguez asked the Supreme Court to let a doctor help her die.  When the court said no, Rodriguez did it anyway, forcing the government to take a look at whether society was ready for legalized euthanasia.

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READ MORE: Robert Latimer applies for pardon of murder conviction

But the case of Tracy Latimer was different because she was a child and her parent made the decision for her, leading to one of the most polarizing court dramas in Canadian history.

Disability activists weigh in on the issue, along with author Gary Bauslaugh, who has written extensively about Robert Latimer’s lengthy legal battle.

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Contact:

Twitter: @1990shistory

Facebook: @1990shistory

Instagram: @that90spodcast

Email: 90s@curiouscast.ca

Guests:

Gary Bauslaugh author of: Robert Latimer: A Story of Justice and Mercy

garybauslaugh.com/

Krista Carr, Executive Vice President of Canadian Association for Community Living

Twitter:  @KristaCarrNB

cacl.ca/

Pat Danforth, Vice Chair of Council of Canadians with Disabilities

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