Why We Should Legalize Euthanasia Essay

1267 words - 5 pages

A few years from now most of us will probably be starting a family of our own. Imagine one of your children is diagnosed with an inoperable bone cancer. Although your child suffers through countless chemo treatments, the doctors tell you there is nothing they can do. As your child lies in the hospital bed you can see them suffering deeply and there is nothing you can do. If you had the option, would you want to end their suffering? Knowing their only comfort in this life is death, would you give them a lethal injection that would end their torment, and let them die peacefully? Or would you just sit back and let them spend their last days in unbearable pain. Today, I will encourage you to consider the option of euthanasia, also known as assisted suicide. I will illustrate the necessity of changing the policy and legalizing euthanasia. I will go over the current policy, the problems, and propose a solution.First of all, one must have an understanding of the term euthanasia. The exact definition, as stated by the Suicide Act of 1961 and one commonly used in court cases is; 1- The accused intended to assist a person to commit suicide, 2- While the accused had that intention, he or she provided the assistance to the person contemplating suicide, 3- The person committing suicide was thereby in fact assisted or encouraged the attempt to take his or her own life (otherwise the alleged offender cannot be guilty of more than an attempt). There are two types of euthanasia; passive and active. According to Richard Currents World Book Encyclopedia, Passive euthanasia is defined as "hastening the death of a person by altering some form of support and letting nature take its course." An example of passive euthanasia would be removing life support or otherwise termed 'pulling the plug.' Where as active euthanasia involves causing the death of a person through direct action, such as a lethal injection. One highly controversial difference is that active euthanasia is illegal, and passive legal. Taking someone off life-support is an option often given to families when a patient is suffering. But if a patient was to ask a doctor to end their life or if a doctor did something to this patient at his/her request then this doctor could be arrested and put on trial for malpractice, murder or manslaughter. I think it's ironic that in the US abortion is legal. Active euthanasia and abortion implement the same concept; giving a person the right to choose between life and death. Euthanasia is the same idea but on the other side of the spectrum. There are a large number of elderly in the US who suffer day and day out, but they do get that decision, even though it's their own life. I believe this is not right because it is seems appropriate to say that one has the right to die an easy death if, and only if, he is terminally ill and suffering.I personally have been in the cancer ward at St. Luke's Hospital, in Milwaukee, and I have witnessed how much trauma and suffering people...

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