Euthanasia: One’s Choice of Life or Death
In recent years euthanasia has become a heated debate. Euthanasia has Greek roots as a “good death.” Euthanasia has many definitions. Euthanasia is considered to be voluntary when it takes place in accordance with the wishes of a competent individual. Nonvoluntary euthanasia is done without knowledge of the patients’ wishes either because the patient has always been incompetent, is now incompetent, or has left no Advanced Directive. Involuntary euthanasia is done against the wishes of the competent individual or against the wishes expressed in a valid Advanced Directive. Assisted suicide is usually defined as a specific situation in which there is a suicide, that is, an act of killing oneself intentionally. Physician assisted suicide is when the individual is given a lethal drug which they can use to kill themselves whenever they choose. Although the definitions may seem clear, there is much confusion about the words used to describe euthanasia and other actions that result in hastening death. Three states, Montana, Oregon, and Washington, have legalized euthanasia. My argument is euthanasia should be legalized in all fifty states.
One point of the heated debate is the slippery slope that could possibly occur if euthanasia was legalized. Professor Phil D. Frey states that “We need the evidence that shows that horrible slope consequences might occur, as noted earlier, does not constitute such evidence.” In other words Phil D. Frey is saying it is possible that slippery slope effect can occur, but nothing shows that it is likely to happen. In Oregon, there are many steps before one can qualify for euthanasia. These steps ensure that no slippery slope can occur.
In Andrew Walters view, “The Oregon Death with Dignity Act” has served as a model statue in other state attempts to pass assisted suicide legislation. The act has several important provisions, read altogether, provide safeguard for the terminally ill, the...
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