Did you know that euthanasia can be categorized in 4 types?
Voluntary- When a competent person makes a voluntary and enduring request to be helped to die.
Involuntary- To end a person’s life without their knowledge, will or consent.
Active- To end a person’s life by using drugs, whether by oneself or with the aid of a physician.
Passive- to end a person life by now taking the necessary and ordinary action to maintain life, like withdrawing water, food etc.
Now you know!
A sixth state is on the rise to legalize euthanasia!
In the Proposition 106, the ballot question would allow terminally ill people to request and self-administer medication to voluntarily end his or her life. If passed, it would amend Colorado law and legalize physician-assisted suicide. Let’s cross our fingers for this large achievement of euthanasia activist groups in Colorado!
As I delve deeper into research on euthanasia I am coming across more reason why people believe that it should stay illegal. I would like to continue to refute these points and further prove why we need to legalize peoples right to choose their own death. I first came across the “slippery slope” argument. This is the idea that once we allow physician assisted suicide it will cross a line that society has created for a reason. Once we cross this line we would be setting a dangerous precedent for the human health. People who believe this argue that it would lead to a unforeseen consequences that would come from allowing people to kill themselves legally. But, not legalizing has lead to horrible consequences that legalizing it would fix. For example, people who are at the point in their illness or disability when they contemplate taking their life want the option to do it in a hospital rather than their own home. If we do not legalize this practice in hospitals, then people will resort to the other option, taking their own life into their own hands and killing themselves in various and dangerous ways. In order for us to monitor this slippery slope and stop people taking their lives unwatched then we need to legalize euthanasia.
Another argument that has been mentioned by various people is that doctors and nurses would be held responsible for killing a life. This would take a toll on their own mental health because they would consider themselves taking someone else’s life They consider this to be unethical medicine for the person administering the drug.. I understand how people can see this to be true, but doctors are well educated and understand the reasoning behind why a patient would choose euthanasia. They may not full understand because it is not happening to them but they would become sympathetic to the patient and understand that they are actually helping the patient die how they want. Doctors and nurses may be administering the drug but they patient is the one who is making the decision. This is similar to people who administer the drug that kills people on death row. It is a similar understanding that it is not in fact in the person who gives the drug but in the hands of the person who is getting the drug. These two perspectives may seem to be correct, but after thinking and educating yourself on euthanasia you will understand that the “slippery slope” idea and the medical ethical argument is not right.
On November 1st, The Council of the District of Columbia passed the Death with Dignity Act with a 11 to 2 vote. Thus, two in three DC residents agree with this position which ultimately allows qualified patients to legally end their lives. The council needs to vote once more by December 6th, the Mayor needs to approve, and Congress has to also confirm their stance. This is certainly a step in the right direction!
Get involved and click this link to sign the thank you card!
Are you wondering where your state’s laws currently are on euthanasia? Click here to find out!
This week we told readers of one of the most famous euthanasia advocates, Brittany Maynard who fought to end her life on her terms when she wanted. As the two year anniversary of her death was merely three days ago, we would like to honor Brittany and all that she stand for.
The main ways in which someone would perform assisted suicide through are drugs, injection, and gases. The lethal drugs are distributed through a prescription of a physician. If the patient is using injections, they first injection puts them in a coma and then the second injection actually stops the heart. Lastly, a patient could use gases or plastic bag and use of carbon monoxide.
Click think link above the learn more!
The argument of human rights and making our own decisions is extremely powerful in legalizing euthanasia. Yet on an even more practical level, why should someone suffer for nothing? Any individual would never want to experience extreme amounts of pain everyday, all day, therefore, why should someone who can not control this pain nor their fate have to endure that? The stereotypical idea of passing away is in a calm and peaceful environment surrounded by close friends and family. But in the world of a terminally ill patient, that is certainly not the case. Experiencing unbearable pain everyday with no hope of survival or “light at the end of the tunnel” only makes the slow process of dying more painful and unendurable for the this person.
Many could refute that these patients can merely take pain killing medication to help endure the pain, but many of these case are incurable or so far gone that no amount of medicine can numb the pain of their ultimate death. An example for the consequences of the inability to utilize physician- assisted suicide, is through a locked-in syndrome victim named Tony Nicklinson. After a massive stroke, Tony became completely paralyzed that brought on his locked-in syndrome which essentially means he can only control the muscles in his eyes. He evidently described his life as “pure torture” and a “living nightmare” which could continue for another 20 years or more.” Yet, the court ruled against his request for euthanasia, which in turn allowed him to take matters into his own hands. He began starving himself in efforts to die and stated that “I am saddened that the law wants to condemn me to a life of increasing indignity and misery.” After a week without nutrients, Tony died of pneumonia. This clearly shows why euthanasia should be legalized as it shows that these patients would rather die of starvation then have to endure long years of ultimate death.
Tony is not the only one with this mindset as many others also took a stand to end their pain. One of the most iconic cases of this issue is of a girl named Brittany Maynard who was diagnosed with stage 4 brain cancer and stated that “because my tumor is so large, doctors prescribed full brain radiation. I read about the side effects: The hair on my scalp would have been singed off. My scalp would be left covered with first-degree burns. My quality of life, as I knew it, would be gone.” Due to her young age of 29, her body could most likely fight the cancer for a longer time but “she suffered “increasingly frequent and longer seizures, severe head and neck pain, and stroke-like symptoms.” She ended her own life on November 1, 2014.
Clearly, through these cases these terminally ill patients main reason they would like to take their own life is due to the fact that can not bare the pain and suffer through an illness that is ultimately incurable. These illnesses immobilize and completely ruin these humans lives to the point that they can not bare. How can others dictate how long you have to sit through pain and watch yourself slowly deteriorate into someone you don’t recognize yourself? The answer is simple. They should not be able to.
There are many people who believe that Euthanasia should under no circumstances are legalized and I would like to prove them wrong. I am going to take a look at three of the most popular reasons why people believe euthanasia should stay illegal and refute them. In an article, “Physician-Assisted Suicide is Always Wrong” by Ryan T. Andersons he discusses these three arguments and many more. The first argument to keep euthanasia illegal is because it endangers the weak and vulnerable. When people are accepting death as their absolute last option the last thing I would describe them as is weak. Many people choosing euthanasia have been fighting, very strongly, a battle that is out of their control. Whether it is a sickness, disease or disability that people are dealing with they resort to euthanasia after fighting undoubtedly the hardest battle of their life. Someone who can endure that and have the courage to look towards euthanasia for a dignified death is not someone who I would qualify as weak.
The second argument is that allowing euthanasia will change the culture in which medicine is practiced and give doctors too much of the power. When dealing with such controversial topics like this one change can definitely be a scary thought. But, many changes in our society have lead to great success and equality including the freeing of slaves. Allowing doctors to have the ability to fulfill someone’s requests to end their life dignified gives them no more power than they already have. Doctors can literally hold someone heart in their hands, but it is up to them what they decide to do with it. Doctors already have a lot of power and take an oath to use it the right way. If euthanasia were to be legalized they would have to follow the right protocol to give out this drug just like they do with any other drug.
The third and final reason why Anderson believes euthanasia should stay illegal is because it would violate human dignity. This is the exact opposite of what legalizing euthanasia would do. Allowing euthanasia would give people the right that they deserve to their own death. If we have the right to live then we have the right to die. It allows people to die a death that is without pain and dignified. As individuals we have the right to live a life we want and die a death that we choose. We should be allowed to choose how we live and how we die. Euthanasia gives people the right to choose how they die, a right that they deserve.
Do not deny people their rights to live or die.