CRJ Essay 1

Submitted By bob2745
Words: 972
Pages: 4

Travis Burger
Criminal Justice
Essay #1

To Die or Not to Die: Why it your choice

As humans and even more so as American we value the idea and notion of self-freedoms. A quick look at the American Bill of Rights within the Constitution and you will find pages of liberties provided to the people. But within a system of such freedoms perhaps we have overlooked and gone without noticing one major gap in these freedoms, the right to control ones life. Life is the most basic and fundamental element of our existence for obvious reason, but in a society that finds it fitting to euthanize beloved pets to save them from pain and incurable illnesses why is it that we will not allow our selves and our loved ones the same luxury. Assisted suicide is suicide committed with the aid of another person, sometimes a physician. The term is often used interchangeably with physician-assisted suicide (PAS), which involves a doctor "knowingly and intentionally providing a person with the knowledge or means or both required to commit suicide, including counseling about lethal doses of drugs, prescribing such lethal doses or supplying the drugs [3]. I am not advocating that people go out and start looking for ways to kill them selves but instead that upon a doctors approval in a situation where a person has contracted a terminal and incurable illness that instead of wasting away, that person may look to end things on there own terms and use assisted suicide.
There are advantages to a person and their family for using assisted suicide. According to one report based out of Oregon 40-70% of patients die in pain, 86% say they have a decreasing ability to participate in activates that made life enjoyable, 100% report losses of autonomy and 86% say they have lost part of there dignity.[1] I believe Jack Kevorkain had it right “If you don't have liberty and self-determination, you've got nothing, that's what this is what this country is built on. And this is the ultimate self-determination, when you determine how and when you're going to die when you're suffering” when you strip away a persons identity threw isolating his decisions, you strip him away from the things that make life worth living then you in turn dehumanize the persons very existence. Fighting a terminal illness to the bitter end is admirable and brave to say the least but why should every terminal patient be forced threw that process. There is nothing disrespectable about wanting to go out on one own terms, before being confined to a life full of excoriating pain, often bed ridden, and having to know your family and loved ones are watching you waste away. The vast majority of Americans say that they would like to die in there own house but 75% die in a hospital or nursing home. [2]Why not allow a person to go out on top while the quality of life is at least better then it will be. Why not allow persons last memories to be those of happiness and self respect and allow loved ones the same courtesy.
There is also the finical aspect, it’s no secret that doctors, surgery’s and hospitals are expensive but it becomes even more finically burdensome when a person is considered terminal. It is estimated that it can cost a hospital up to $10,000 a day for a person in intensive care unit and 18-20% of Americans spend there final days in intensive care. Last year Medicare alone spent 50 billion dollars just for doctor and hospital bills during the last two months of patient’s lives.[2] Just to give some perspective of that amount that’s more than the budget of the Department of Homeland security or the department of education in the United States. There are