“Euthanasia”, “mercy killing”, and “physically assisted suicide” – no matter what it is called – they all mean the same thing: ending a person’s life who is in a vegetative state or who is suffering from terminal illness, in order to relieve the subject of pain and suffering associated with their condition. But the main question is, is euthanasia right? Everyone dies, and if a person is terminally ill, then they should have the right to decide to pass away without the suffering.
Most people are against euthanasia based on their religious background. Hindus, Muslims, and Roman Catholics consider it murder and immoral. They believe that no one has the right to end another’s life, and want us to believe that all the suffering endured by the ill person is in God’s will. But is it wrong to keep someone alive if it “is in God’s will” for them to die? If we do not have the right to decide whether someone dies, do we have the right to decide whether someone lives?
Cancer patients have significantly higher suicide rates than the general population (around 31.4/100,00 compared to the 16.7/100,00.) 8.5% of terminally ill cancer patients express their wish to have an early death, and 10% have seriously thought about finding a physician that will assist them in their death. They do not want to suffer, so why make them? It is their decision – not ours. With health care costs rising, it is understandable that the terminally ill do not wish to go bankrupt on medication and treatments that have no positive impact on them. But this is not just a number game to them – it is their life, suffering, and overall quality of life on the line. Choosing where and when they die lets them regain control of their life.
If a person is not competent enough to make this decision, the family that is taking care of them, and suffering with them should be able to choose. Although many Americans put this decision in their wills, some anti- euthanasia activists believe...
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