April 2nd 2014
Dictionary.com provides the following: eu·tha·na·sia, ˌyo͞oTHəˈnāZHə/ noun
The painless killing of a patient suffering from an incurable and painful disease or in an irreversible coma. The practice is illegal in most countries. This is the dictionary
definition of euthanasia. Euthanasia is a very important and critical topic to talk about. Both sides of this issue can be argued very well. This paper is going to show the negative side of euthanasia, but also show what the other side of the argument is. Euthanasia, also known as assisted suicide, physician-assisted suicide (dying) doctor-assisted dying (suicide), and more loosely termed mercy killing, basically means to take a deliberate action with the express intention of ending a life to relieve intractable (persistent, unstoppable) suffering. Some interpret euthanasia as the practice of ending a life in a painless manner. Many disagree with this interpretation, because it needs to include a reference to intractable suffering. In the majority of countries euthanasia or assisted suicide is against the law. According to the National Health Service (NHS), UK, it is illegal to help somebody kill themselves, regardless of circumstances. Assisted suicide, or voluntary euthanasia carries a maximum sentence of 14 years in prison in the UK. In the USA the law varies in some states, but for the most part, it is legal in the U.S. There are two main classifications of euthanasia: Voluntary euthanasia - this is euthanasia conducted with consent. Since 2009, voluntary euthanasia has been legal in Belgium, Luxembourg, The Netherlands, Switzerland, and the US states of Oregon and Washington. Involuntary euthanasia - euthanasia is conducted without consent. The decision is made by another person because the patient is incapable to doing so themselves. There are two procedural classifications of euthanasia: Passive euthanasia - this is when life-sustaining treatments are withheld. The definition of passive euthanasia is often not clear-cut. For example, if a doctor prescribes increasing doses of opioid analgesia (strong painkilling medications) which may eventually be toxic for the patient, some may argue whether passive euthanasia is taking place - in most cases, the doctor's measure is seen as a passive one. Many claim that the term is wrong, because euthanasia has not taken place, because there is no intention to take life. Active euthanasia - lethal substances or forces are used to end the patient's life. Active euthanasia includes life-ending actions conducted by the patient or somebody else.
From the Christian point of view, there are many interpretations on euthanasia. Christians often refer to euthanasia as “playing God.” This means that we are deciding when someone’s life is going to end, not God. Christians are mostly against euthanasia. The arguments are usually based on the beliefs that life is given by God, and that human beings are made in God's image. Some churches also emphasize the importance of not interfering with the natural process of death. Life is a gift from God. All life is God-given; birth and death are part of the life processes, created by God, so we should respect them. No human being has the authority to take the life of any innocent person, even if that person wants to die. Human beings are valuable because they are made in God's image. Paraphrasing ---------------Human life possesses an intrinsic dignity and value because it is created by God in his own image for the distinctive destiny of sharing in God's own life, saying that God created humankind in his own image doesn't mean that people actually look like God, but that people have a unique capacity for rational existence that enables them to see what is good and to want what is good as people develop these abilities they live a life that is as close as possible to God's life of love. This is a good thing, and life should be