Euthanasia Research Paper

Submitted By Karinka2002
Words: 1873
Pages: 8

Euthanasia Euthanasia (also called mercy killing) is the act of putting to death painlessly or allowing to die, as by withholding extreme medical measures, a person or animal suffering from an incurable, especially a painful, disease or condition. (“Euthanasia”) To this day euthanasia remains a widely debated ethical problem. As any ethical topic, euthanasia brings up highly controversial questions about life and death, and if we as humans have the right to decide who lives and who dies, or if such decisions should be left up to God. Bible states: "For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up"(King James' Version, Ecclesiastes 3:1-3) I believe that euthanasia should not be legalized because it goes against God's will and it could put to much power in the hands of doctors and patient's relatives. Many people believe that every person has the right to choose to live or to die with dignity because every person has his own values. For a lot of people death is not the end but the beginning. The researchers at Harris Interactive found that 70 percent of American adults believe that terminally ill patients who experience persistent pain and have no chance of recovery should have the right to choose between life and euthanasia. Most of the interviewed adults that supported euthanasia were 65 or older. Out of all interviewed adults 58 percent supported the idea that physician-assisted euthanasia, when requested by the patient himself, should be authorized by law (Harris Interactive). And only 20 percent disagreed with it and 22 percent were undecided. The survey of 10,000 U.S. doctors, which was published in November 2010, revealed that 45.8 percent of them believe that physician-assisted euthanasia should be allowed in some cases (Kane). 13.5 percent believe that the choice depends on specific circumstances and 40.7 percent were completely against physician-assisted euthanasia (Kane). From the article “Terminally Ill Cancer Patients Favor Legalization of Euthanasia and Physician-Assisted Suicide” one can see the results of the survey taken among the terminally ill patients raising the question whether the euthanasia should be legalized or not. It was found that 73 percent believed euthanasia or physician-assisted suicide should be legalized - their major reasons included pain and the right to choose (“Terminally Ill Cancer Patients”) .An appeal, which included the names of a number of prominent physicians, scientists, artists from the U.S. and the UK, with more than 2.5 thousand signatures was sent to UN in 1952. The appeal referred to the need to amend the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, to include the right of terminally ill patients to choose an easy death. The appeal was rejected as inhumane (John-Stevas 266). According to Thomas W Clark, an associate director of the Institute for Naturalistic Philosophy in Cambridge, it is not permissible to “Play God” in the human world. Clark states that the word euthanasia translates into Christian’s world as “Playing God”. Christians as many other religions stay against killing people not even permitting the fact that death can be more favorable than life with no quality (Clark). The religious aspects are very important to a large number of people. One of the main reasons why euthanasia should not be legalized is that it conflict with one of God’s commandments – "Thou shall not kill"(Old Testament, Exodus 20:13). This commandment has no exceptions and no comments. Additionally, it is brief and clear without any possibility for dual interpretation. As an opponent of euthanasia, the Church is primarily guided by the words of God and has a very strong opinion about legalization or use of euthanasia. As stated in the book “The End of Life: Ethical Considerations”,