Assisted Suicide Research Paper

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Have you ever heard a grown man cry; a cry so loud that you can hear and feel the pain within his voice? No, well it happens daily, here in the United States. There are thousands of people that are going through so much suffering that pain killers are like putting a band aid of a bullet wound. As hours pass the wound is getting bigger and the band aids are helping less and less. Most of these people just want a release, but even professionals cannot grant that request. Physician Assisted Suicide (PAS) is a controversial topic which is debated on through out the world. (PAS) is a process where a doctor or nurse gives a lethal injection of medicine to a patient in need. But since this procedure is illegal, doctors are not allowed to aid an individual that is seeking a final release. This is the reason why terminally ill patients around the country are constantly tormented with pain and agony past their will. Assisted Suicide should be legalized in the United States because it will lead to less pain and suffering, less financial problems, and more time for the doctors and the patient’s family to get past this tragic event. The history of assisted suicide is neither lengthy nor complex. Aided suicide has origins tracing all the way back to around the fourth century, when scholars estimate the Hippocratic Oath, an ethical vow taken by doctors, was written (Liecht). Part of the Oath states, “I will not give a lethal drug to anyone if I am asked, nor will I advise such a plan” (Picket). What this statement is saying is that doctors are not legally or morally allowed to assist a terminally ill patient end his or her life. Within the last thirty years, however, instances of physician assisted suicide have been showing up all over the world. In 1997, Oregon created the “death with Dignity” law that “allows terminally ill patients to commit suicide with lethal doses of prescribed medication (Picket). “At least now there's a discussion around end-of-life care and what people want, and making sure they have access to hospice” (Dr. Hedberg). “People are talking to their physicians about being in pain. That dialogue has been improving in the state. I don't want to say that it's because we have the law. However, over the past 10 years, it has opened people up to thinking about end-of-life care and palliative care as an important aspect of medical care” (Dr, Hedberg). So as years pass more and more terminally ill patients ask for the “end-of-life care” because of the pain and suffering they have to go through daily. Individuals that are at the end of their lives should have a voice to whether or not they should live painfully or die peacefully on their own terms. Everyday in the United States people decide to take their own lives so they do not have to go through sever problems health wise. For example, take the story of Edward Downes and his wife, Joan Downes was a successful maestro. He conducted the BBC Philharmonic and the Royal Opera when he was at his prime. In her prime, his wife had been a ballet dancer, as well as a choreographer. Recently, however, he had become nearly blind and his hearing was deteriorating very rapidly. Joan, his wife, had recently been diagnosed with cancer. Instead of living out the rest of their lives in pain and with the burden of the worsening medical conditions, the pair chose to use physician assisted suicide. The couple’s children were supportive and stated, “After 54 years together, our parents died peacefully and under circumstances of their own choosing” (Sciutto). Nine hundred and fifty six usable responses relating to physician assisted suicide (PAS) and 957 in relation to family assisted suicide (FAS) were available. 84% of respondents supported legalization of (PAS) and 54% legalization of (FAS). This compares with 75% in favor of legalization of (PAS) in the US in 1994 and 73% in Australia in 1995 (O’Neil, Feenan, Hughes). These statistics are stating that the...
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