Euthanasia Essay, Research Paper
A great deal of debate surrounds the practice of assisted suicide. Lately, laws against voluntary euthanasia have been eased, although serious moral and legal questions still exist. Most opposition of assisted suicide comes from religious groups, including Christianity, Judaism, and Islam. Even though euthanasia is opposed by these religious groups, it is favored not only by the individual, but the court system as well. In 1994 voters in the state of Oregon passed an initiative allowing doctors, at the request of a capable, terminally ill patient, to prescribe medication for the purpose of ending the patient s life. In the 1997 case of Washington v. Glucksberg, the Supreme Court ruled that the state of Washington s law prohibiting assisted suicide was not unconstitutional. The Court s ruling basically allows each state to determine whether or not to prohibit or permit assisted suicide.
Assisted suicide should not be a controversial topic. I take the same point of view on this as I did on abortion. It should be the person s right to decide if they wish to live or die. Who has the power over you to decide if you cannot die? In abortion, the unborn child cannot say if he wishes to live or die: it ends up becoming the mother and father s decision. But with voluntary euthanasia, it is all the patient s choice. Who has the right to oppose what is coming straight from the mouth of the patient? The patient s life will end, and it is their choice. Why shouldn t it be? Assisted suicide will end suffering of a terminally ill patient. And most likely, the family will support the notion of euthanasia because it will end the unnecessary suffering of a loved one. Why would a religion oppose an end to unnecessary pain? I do not know. What I do know, however, is that if I became terminally ill or invalid and was in an enormous amount of pain, I would not want anyone to stand in the way of my death. However, euthanasia should only be considered under the most extreme circumstances.