23 May 2011
Euthanasia Research Paper
When an animal is in pain a veterinarian puts it out of its misery. How come doctors cannot put those who are suffering and struggling out of their pain? Euthanasia defined by a study carried out by the British Social Attitude Survey shows that close to ninety percent of incurable patients’ relatives agree to euthanasia (Percentage Who Think That Euthanasia Should 'Definitely' or 'Probably' be Allowed by Law for Those Who Are Suffering, Fig.1). Those who are in a vegetative state and in unbearable pain should have the right to rest in peace. Euthanasia is a very controversial topic, which is illustrated in both real life situations as well as in literature such as Ken Kesey’s novel, One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest. Those living through pure agony waiting for their last moment deserve to be put out of their misery.
For many years euthanasia has been debated over; is it okay to kill someone or not? But it’s not as simple as that. The argument that people against euthanasia present is that there is a fine line between voluntary suicide, or assisted suicide, and involuntary murder. People that support euthanasia consider a death that raises the suffering of a patient to be unethical, while opposition considers any intentional death to be immoral. “Euthanasia is the act or practice of killing or permitting the death of hopelessly sick or injured individuals (as persons or domestic animals) in a relatively painless way for reasons of mercy” ("Euthanasia," The Merriam-Webster Dictionary).
Unfortunately the result too many extreme medical procedures and incurable diseases leads a patient to enter a ‘vegetable’ state in which they cannot perform basic functions by himself/herself. In cases like these relatives and close friends of the patient would rather their loved one rest in peace than watch them struggling to live, forcing them to depend on sophisticated machines so they can breathe, sleep, eat, and excrete waste. Severe situations where a person is unable to perform the basic functions needed to live and has no hope of regaining their health should be euthanized. It’s not worth it to keep someone living if they’re going to live in pain. According to the The Patients Rights Council there was an estimated 525 assisted suicides in the year of 2010 (Oregon Stats, Fig.1). Legalizing euthanasia will decrease the number of suicides and assisted suicides, so medical professionals can put a patient out of their pain peacefully and painlessly avoiding violent and painful deaths frequently caused by suicide. “The big, hard body had a tough grip on life. It fought a long time against having it taken away, flailing and thrashing around so much I finally had to lie full length on top of it and scissor the kicking legs with mine while I mashed the pillow into the face… Until the thrashing stopped (Kesey 175).” The patient in this case is not being put to rest but being brutally murdered. Euthanasia would simply put an end to medically related suicides.
With the legalization of euthanasia many patients who are on the verge of death suffering from unbearable pain can peacefully and painlessly leave this world. Suicides rates would drastically decrease within the United States if euthanasia was legalized, and many families would not have to watch their loved ones suffer from the intense pain. In 2005 there were a reported 32,637 successful suicides among those who suffered their last years of life. If legalized these numbers would go down significantly. (Percentage Who Think That Euthanasia Should 'Definitely' or 'Probably' be Allowed by Law for Those Who Are Suffering, Fig. 1) A person suffering from the intense incurable pain will think of nothing but freedom from the agonizing misery that they are going through. It does not matter how they are released they just want to be free of the pain. Dr. Blaire said “The illegalization of euthanasia causes…