Essay On Euthanasia
Assisted suicide or euthanasia has received both positive and negative criticism on its validity. This has been a contentious issue considering the reasons that have been raised for and against its practice. A special attention has been given to the old members of the society and the terminally ill patient. Those who are for the support of euthanasia consider the fact that a person who is old and terminally ill has no value in the society and instead subjected to a life of pain, loneliness and a medical bill that continues to build up. Those against the practice of euthanasia believe in the sanctity of life which should not be taken away by artificial means. No matter how sick or old a person is, he or she is still important to the community and should therefore be given the chance to live life to their full without taking them away. God is the source of every livelihood and is therefore the only one who knows when and how a person should die. In this paper, we shall argue against euthanasia with reference to the view points of various authors.
Euthanasia is a selfish way of escaping the challenges that come with life. A human being is born to enjoy and endure life, which in the long run, impacts on other people. There is no wasted life or useless life in the history of life. In fact, most of the inventions that have been made were inspired by tragedy or misfortunes. It is therefore selfish for a person to appreciate all the good that comes with life and fail to endure the negatives. Choosing to die, or making a decision for someone to die is implying that suffering is not part of human life, which is a false way of looking at it.
Matthew Hayes feels that a person should be allowed to die when they want to, terming it ‘dying with dignity’. He cites the case of his grandmother, who died naturally after two years of her desire for her life to be taken. Looking at the phrase dying with dignity, we realize that euthanasia does not guarantee that a person dies with dignity. The fact is that the main reason why the grandmother expressed her desire to die is because of the pain and suffering she was going through. By the time she was making the decision to die, she had already lost her dignity because of her illness and old age that made her not to do and enjoy what she used to. Just like many other people who get frustrated with the issues of life, the grandmother thought that dying would bring a solution to her suffering. However, allowing a person to die naturally is likely to restore her dignity by making her know that she has no power of her body.
Derek Miedema, is mainly concerned about the issue of euthanasia in relation to the advice that doctors give to patients. There is a difference between a patient suggesting to be given lethal drugs to his or her life, or the doctor giving such a suggestion to the patient. Derrick feels that doctors are manipulating patients and making them realize how bad the situation is. Such doctors are more willing to give the patients the lethal drugs more than the patients themselves want. This is a professional manipulation that makes patient loose hope in life. The decision is a sign of professional hopelessness where the doctor is not ready to make any medical sacrifices that will give the patient another lease of life. The doctor is showing how much unwilling he is to take care of the patient and the fact that the patient has nothing good to offer to the society.
The legalization of euthanasia is a form of pessimism that has to be discouraged at all costs. Hope is one aspect that has the capability of making a very sick person feel healthy once again. There is usually hope for a miracle that may come in terms of healing or even the invention of drugs that will prolong the life of such a patient, if not completely treat her.
With the though of euthanasia, Hayes’s grandmother was no longer optimistic about life and filled her mind with the desire to die. Hayes was not offering any form of help to het that would most probably look at life at a different dimension (Rachels 43). Instead of following up on doctors and even the law to allow her die, he should have been giving her hope that change her mind. From the reading, it was clear that the Hayes and his grandmother were not expecting any good news of a treatment or a miracle that would guarantee her a more enthusiastic life. At the moment when she desired to die, she had already lost hope and the two years she was allowed to live should have dome much in giving her back the hope.
Whether sick or not, terminally ill or old age, there is nothing that can guarantee a person living a dignified life rather than having hope. Legalizing euthanasia is simply encouraging people to loose hope in life when they are facing terminal illnesses or when they get old. It is hence important for people to know that there is more to life than cancer or old age. There is a lot that one can enjoy and celebrate in life rather than looking at themselves as a bother to society. Just as one enjoyed good moments when they were healthy, they also need to endure with hope the painful moments of life until when nature takes it course.
Hayes, Matthew All Individuals Have the Right to Die with Dignity." Right to Die: Should Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide Be Legal? PanAm Post, 26 Nov. 2014. Web. 25 Feb. 2015.
Miedema, Derek. Assisted Suicide Laws Empower Doctors to Prescribe Death." Right to Die: Should Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide Be Legal? PanAm Post, 26 Nov. 2014. Web. 25 Feb. 2015.
Rachels, James. The end of life: euthanasia and morality. No. s 204. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1986.