Euthanasia

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Human euthanasia is an emotionally charged subject for those who argue for and those who argue against. Arguments supporting euthanasia include ending suffering, freedom of choice to decide how and when one dies, and being able to die with dignity. Arguments opposing euthanasia include that euthanasia is murder, use of palliative care to provide for a more comfortable, dignified death, and in most cases, the desire to die prematurely is rooted in depression.

Advances in medical technology today often means that people are living longer and all too often suffering for long periods of time due to illnesses, and yes, this does often mean an agonizingly slow death. Suicide and assisted suicide is often viewed as the most logical choice when faced with these circumstances. As far back as the 16th Century, people have been arguing for the terminally ill to be aided in ending life by physicians who should not be held morally or legally to blame for assisting the individual. The beginning of the 21rst Century saw many bills supporting the use of euthanasia proposed in many Western legislatures with little to no success. The fact is that everyone is going to die, the only question that remains to be answered is when, how, and under what conditions. Supporters of euthanasia state that everyone should have the same degree of control in choosing the circumstances surrounding their death as they do in choosing the manner in which they live.

The ethical conflicts that surround euthanasia are non-debatable, and include the need for legal safeguards that prevent abuse, to claim otherwise would be hypocrisy. Society accepts the need to "put animals down" when faced with old age, terminal illness, or debilitating injuries; indeed, many societies have even accepted the need euthanize violent criminals that are deemed to be too great a risk to society. These are considered by many to not only be humane, but just regardless of the degree of heartbreak the act can cause. Medical...
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