Euthanasia is ending a very sick individual’s life in order to relieve them from their pain and their suffering. A person who undergoes euthanasia usually has an incurable condition also known as a terminal illness. However there are other cases where some people want their life to be ended. In many cases, it is carried out at the individual's request but there are times when they may be too ill and the decision is made by relatives, doctors or, in some cases, the courts. As said on the bbc website “the term Euthanasia is derived from the Greek word ‘euthanatos’ which means easy death.” Euthanasia is against the law in the UK where it is illegal to help anyone kill themselves. Voluntary euthanasia or assisted suicide can lead to imprisonment of up to 14 years. Terminally ill people can have their quality of life severely damaged by physical conditions such as queasiness and sickness, breathlessness, paralysis and difficulty in swallowing. Mental or emotional aspects that cause people to think of euthanasia include depression, fearing loss of control or dignity, feeling a burden, or dislike of being dependent. Some individuals may say that people should respect other people’s wishes. If someone feels their life is not worth living anymore and has thought carefully about ending their life then I think we should respect their decision. People need to make decisions in their life according to their own ideas, beliefs and feelings about where they want their lives to go. People take responsibility for their own lives and since dying is a part of life, the choices people make about dying or ending their life should be part of these responsibilities. Most people are concerned at some time in their life about how their life will end. If someone plans the way they will die and they are comfortable with it then they should be allowed to do so if they wish. People may argue that Euthanasia is so that people should be able to end their lives surrounded by loved ones such as their relatives and friends. Many people worry about how their lives will end. I personally think if someone feels their life is not worth living anymore then they should be able to end their lives with their loved ones around their side. If a individual had a terminal illness and could die at any time there may not be anyone around to say goodbye to which would be a terribly lonely death but having a loved one with you would comfort and make it a joyful way to spend the last moment of their life. Certainly if someone had planned their death with loved ones around to say final words and goodbye it would be a much better way to die. If the ‘loved ones’ did not have a problem with the person doing so then who else could it affect and make such a big issue about. Another cruel point is that Euthanasia is that overall it is cheaper. What this means is that the cost of keeping a person active against their will would be more expensive than allowing them pass away. The financial cost of long term medical treatment and nursing care is very expensive. Legalising euthanasia would take away the need to spend money on this type of care and free up money that can be spent elsewhere. This is a fairly cruel argument, but when you are arguing such a solid case these arguments can be necessary. Many may say that we should preserve life. This argument is mainly to do with religious beliefs. Several Christians believe that God should be the only one to take life away, since he gave life to them. It is felt that Euthanasia would remove the act of taking a life from God to humanity. In Christian religion any form of suicide is considered corrupt. The fifth commandment states that ‘thou shall not kill’ this sums up the Christian argument and opinion on Euthanasia. However if euthanasia is legalised many people could make the wrong decision. It is feared that dishonest family members or doctors will persuade the person in question to take their life against their will. Some people believe there is nothing logically unreliable in supporting voluntary euthanasia but rejecting non-voluntary euthanasia is morally incorrect. For example if someone is in a persistent vegetative state and their life is considered not worth living, but they have never voiced that they the wish die, then non-voluntary Euthanasia should not be allowed. Many people ask the question ‘why capital punishment is legal (in some countries) but Euthanasia is not?’ How can it be that a person who has done nothing wrong cannot decide to take their own life but someone who has done something wrong can have their life decided upon by a different person or group of people. Overall I believe that Euthanasia should be legal not only in the UK but other countries too. I think the world really is often a bizarre place. If you see two men fighting on the streets they are thugs however if you put them in a ring and pay them lots of money and it becomes a sport. Similarly when your dog's cancer ridden and is in a lot of pain you are advised to put it out of its misery but when it's a human being in the same situation it's illegal. With Euthanasia I think individuals would be able to pass away in a positive and happy environment knowing that their family supported them in their decision without Euthanasia not only does the ill individual have to be in pain but their relatives are also in pain seeing their friend or family deteriorating in front of their very own eyes.
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Sources – BBC Website, Wikipedia, Euthanasia.com, BBC Bitesize.