Whose Life Is It? Reasons For Legalizing Euthanasia

1976 words - 8 pages

"Whose life is it, anyways?" Life itself is complicated but allowing people to die by assistance is far more complex. Euthanasia is still a controversial issue in North American society, in particular Canada. Euthanasia comes from the Greek word euthantos literally meaning "well death." In modern English, it is defined as "bringing about of a gentle death in the case of incurable and painful disease." There are two basic types of euthanasia: active and passive. Active euthanasia is the commission of act (i.e. example lethal injection). Passive euthanasia is the opposite whereby medical care is withheld from the patient (also know as omission). Although there is a positive movement for euthanasia, it is still something more than "the quality of life". It is as the Christian doctrine states "the sanctity of life". It is true that the Canadian Charter of Rights gives us the right of liberty and allowing someone to suffer a terminal illness can be considered "cruel and unusual punishment". However, this is overlooking the obvious. Euthanasia is considered morally wrong and because of the legal, ethical and social impact it has in our society, it should never be legalized.The law is there to protect citizens so legalizing euthanasia would defeat its purpose. Physician- assisted suicide is too close to murder and has so far been prohibited by the Criminal Code of Canada."14. No person is entitled to consent to have death inflicted on him, and such consent does not affect the criminal responsibility of any person by whom death may be inflicted on the person by whom consent is given."241. Everyone who counsels a person to commit suicide or aids or abets a person to commit suicide, whether suicide ensues or not, is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding fourteen years."Consent or no consent, murder is still murder. In fact, no one has the right to choose his timing of death. It is even an offence to aid, counsel or encourage a person to end his life. Some may argue that Section. 241 violates Section 12 of the Charter that protects the citizens from "cruel and unusual punishment". Keeping in mind however that the government can suspend a person's rights if there is just reasoning. Although Section 7 of the Charter of Rights gives everyone the "right to life, liberty and security," Section 1 of the Charter contains the "reasonable limits" clause."1.The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms guarantees the rights and freedoms set out in it subject only to such reasonable limits prescribed by law as can be demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society."Keeping euthanasia illegal does not infringe on our fundamental justices because of this loophole. Rather than thinking of the effect of euthanasia on a single person, it is seen as how it can affect the country. What decisions are made in the Canadian courts reflect our society. Canada is already a very liberal country, but allowing people to die is...

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