Composition 12 – Holloway
November 26, 2013
Imagine being terminally ill and being told by a doctor that there is only have six months left to live and that those next six months will wither the body down to nothing through pain and suffering. Physician-assisted suicide could save many Americans from this nightmarish reality that terminally ill patients face today. If physician-assisted suicide or euthanasia was legal in the United States, months of suffering and a loss of dignity and autonomy could be spared. Therefore, physician-assisted suicide, in the style Oregon employs, should be legalized and available to suffering patients across the United States. To discuss the legalization of physician-assisted suicide, one must first understand what physician-assisted suicide is. In 1994, Oregon voters passed the controversial Death with Dignity Act which allowed for legal use of physician assisted suicide. Since 1997, 341 people with terminal illnesses participated in physician-assisted suicide. In order to be prescribed to the lethal dose, one must be at least an eighteen year old resident of Oregon, diagnosed with a terminal illness with a prognosis of 6 months, must be able to make their own decisions about health-care, must have their mental health evaluated by two separate physicians who agree upon the diagnosis, must make two requests separated by fifteen days, and the prescribing physician must inform the patient of alternatives to physician-assisted suicide (Friedman 36-37). There are several arguments surrounding physician-assisted suicide one of which debates if it’s moral. Despite the controversy surrounding the issue, physician-assisted suicide is ethical. Some would base their argument off their religious beliefs that suicide in general is immoral. However, the United States government tends not to make religion a factor when making law, for example: it is...
Cited: Friedman, Lauri S. Compact Research : Assisted Suicide :. San Diego: ReferencePoint, 2009. Print.
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Rosenthal, Elisabeth. "The $2.7 Trillion Medical Bill." NYTimes.com. New York Times, 1 June 2013. Web. 21 Nov. 2013.
Wekesser, Carol. Euthanasia: Opposing Viewpoints. San Diego, CA: Greenhaven, 1995. Print.
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