Occasionally, someone commits a crime so heinous and disturbing it leads to demands for specific changes in law. Such is the case in Utah in the wake of the suicide of a 16-year-old girl and the efforts of a young man accused of helping, abetting and encouraging her.
A bill before the Utah Legislature would add assisted suicide to the state’s manslaughter statute. That is an appropriate measure that could give law enforcement authorities more prosecutorial leverage.
Few things governments do are more important than defending the sanctity of life. Young people, in particular, often lack the maturity and critical thinking skills to make rational decisions, especially when faced with pressure from peers.