Argumentative Paper: Legalizing Euthanasia

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Most people do not like to talk or even think about death; much less the topic of ending one’s own life. However, for some, death is a desired alternative to living in agony. Euthanasia has been a topic of debate since antiquity, and both sides stand firm on their beliefs. The right to choose death is illegal in most countries. I believe in people’s freedom to do what they please with their own bodies. The basic right of liberty is what America was founded on. Euthanasia should be a legal option.
It’s important to start by understanding the different types of euthanasia. Allowing someone to die is, “Forgoing or withdrawing medical treatment that offers no hope of benefit to the total well-being of the patient, or that imposes burdens disproportionate to the potential benefits, allows the patient to die” (Manning 2). Traditionally called passive euthanasia, allowing someone to die was redefined by and is acceptable in the Catholic Church. Active euthanasia, also known as physician-assisted suicide, is when someone other than the patient ends the life of the patient upon explicit request. I view active and passive euthanasia to be one in the same with one very real difference; allowing someone to die delays the inevitable and the patient is left to twist and turn for awhile longer. Peter Chesterfield comments, “A terminally ill, mentally competent patient like me should not be forced to suffer. This is as morally unacceptable as murder” (qtd. In Friedman 8). On the other hand, “The phrase ‘mercy killing’ refers to someone’s taking a direct action to terminate a patient’s life without the patient’s permission” (Thiroux and Krasemann 184). Mercy killing is the form of euthanasia that must be properly monitored and consist...

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...ties Toward Physician-
Assisted Death: An Exploratory Assessment of the Vulnerability Argument,” Journal of Disability Policy Studies, vol. 16, no. 1, Summer 2005. Print.

Manning M.D., Michael. Euthanasia and Physician-Assisted Suicide: Killing or Caring?
Mahwah: Paulist Press, 1998. Print.

Nordqvist, Christian. "What Is Euthanasia." Medical News Today. MediLexicon International, 26 Sept. 2014. Web. 05 May 2015. .

Sharma, Shweta. "Euthanasia: Debate Rekindled on Right to Die for the Terminally Ill." Health and Wellness Resource Center. Mel, 3 Aug. 2014. Web. 05 May 2015.

Snyder, Carrie L. Euthanasia: Opposing Viewpoints. Farmington Hills: Bonnie Szumski,
2006. Print.

Thiroux, Jacques P. and Kevin W. Krasseman. Ethics: Theory and Practice. Upper
Saddle River: Prentice Hall, 2012. Print.

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