It’s not unheard-of for a citizen to sue the U.S. government for wrongful death. What’s unusual is someone suing the government because he himself expects to die in fifty years or so.
Twenty-five-year-old Ken Weckmeyer of Edina, Minnesota, doesn’t look like a terminal medical case. But he says he’s going to die eventually, and that’s Uncle Sam’s responsibility.
“I know it sounds crazy at first,” Weckmeyer told reporters Wednesday, “but you’ve got to think about an issue like this without preconceptions.
“I was lying in bed one morning about six months ago,” he said, “when it occurred to me that I’m going to die someday. It doesn’t matter what I eat or how much exercise I get or how well I take care of myself generally. I’m still gonna die, through no fault of my own.
“And the first thing that came into my mind was, ‘I’ve got to sue somebody. Somebody’s got to pay for this injustice. The Declaration of Independence states that every American has the inalienable right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. But I’m going to be deprived of my right to life. Am I supposed to just sit around and accept this?’”
When asked whether every person in the country isn’t in the same boat, Weckmeyer replied that he is planning a class action suit, with all American citizens as plaintiffs. He said he believes that a million dollar settlement for each plaintiff, minus legal fees, should provide some consolation in the face of such a massive, systemic injustice.