Euthanasia, or as it’s also known as, physician-assisted suicide or assisted suicide, is a controversial health topic with many opposing views and beliefs. Euthanasia is commonly referred to as the act of intentionally ending one’s life due to pain or suffering, Though this practice is not legal within the United States, countries such as Belgium, Netherlands, and India are all one’s in which openly and actively practice this form of suicide, This practice is normally performed by a licensed medical physician, with consent of the affected patient, leaving the possibility of life or death within the physician’s hands.
Under the term ‘euthanasia‘ falls various forms such as voluntary, involuntary, passive, and active, Euthanasia encompasses various issues in the areas such as religion, politics, ethics, and philosophy (Chao, 2002), Focusing on the stance that euthanasia should be fully legalized, many viewpoints and research reflect such beliefst To begin, one main argument to why euthanasia should be legalized is that individuals suffering from pain or near death, should have the right to be able to end their own life‘s at their desired time (Pereira, 2006).
Some individuals believe that their life or death should be fully their own choice and should be completely within their control, When a patient is severely suffering from pain or a various illness, treatment or lack thereof, should fully be decided by the affected individual, Another benefit of legalizing euthanasia is the quality of death that a suffering patient would receive (Emmanuel, 1999). A simple injection or the swallow of a pill, would enable a patient to end his or her life peacefully and confidently As stated in Pereira‘s article, one argument in favor of legalizing euthanasia was the assurance and peace felt by family members of suffering patients, Personal interviews were conducted in the provided study that revealed family members had peace in knowing their loved ones were no longer suffering As medical costs and bills have the tendency to put strain on family or loved ones, many individuals stand in favor of legalizing euthanasia to relieve such burden.
To finalize the view and beliefs of legalizing euthanasia, the meaning and depth of autonomy holds high importance and value within our society (Emanuel, 1999) This in itself is a reason for people to believe in the practice of euthanasia. As you can see, there are many different viewpoints, beliefs, and values that various individuals hold as to why euthanasia should be legalized 0n the other hand, there are just as many stances as to why euthanasia should not be legalized, To begin, the practice of euthanasia has the ability to go against personal or religious beliefs, Some believe that taking your own life is a way in which you go against God’s plan. Rather than depending on His will for your life, you are bringing your own life into your own hands, Euthanasia has the power to influence the medical profession in many ways Not only does this include controversy within hospitals or care settings, but this also puts the responsibility and emotional burden on the practicing medical physician, As recorded and indicated within the study, 25% of physicians stated that they regret preforming euthanasia.
Other arguments include family members or loved ones who may use coercion to influence patient’s decisions, in order to relieve their own forms of pain or suffering. In this case, it is no longer the patient’s full decision but rather one made by their friends or family, When reflecting on the viewpoints and beliefs of euthanasia, one must always consider the mental state that the suffering patient is in Many individuals against legalizing euthanasia strongly believe that such form of suicide could take place while patient is not fully mentally presentr Therefore, he or she would not be able to make an informed, educated, and confident decision in ending his or her life. One final viewpoint as to why euthanasia should not be legalized is known as the slippery slope phenomenon Within Chao‘s article, a couple stories were shared in regards to practicing physicians who performed euthanasia without consent or approval of another medical professional. Each of these acts resulted in murder charges for both of the physicians involve.
There have been concerns regarding the possibility of euthanasia being performed too soon. Instances where other viable means of treatment were available to positively influence the patient’s condition, but euthanasia was still chosen. This stresses the importance of euthanasia being a last resort option. As for myself, I stand firmly against legalizing euthanasia. Not only do my personal and religious beliefs reflect this, but overall I believe that purposely ending ones‘ life is not ethical. As stated above, I believe that the practice of euthanasia has the ability to negatively affect family members and practicing physician’st Though I do not desire to see my friends or family suffering, my beliefs on euthanasia remain firm. I cannot personally reconcile the act of euthanasia with my religious or moral beliefst.
To conclude, euthanasia has the ability and power to affect an individual and their family in a deep and powerful way As both viewpoints on legalizing euthanasia were clearly laid out, you can see as to why this is a controversial health topic. As we head into a future filled with medical advancements, it is my clear understanding that the argument surrounding euthanasia will only continue to grow. It is plain to see that the issue of euthanasia encompasses various aspects of life including politics, ethics, and religion. With this being said, it is important to be educated and understanding of controversial topics you may encounter.