Exploration of Euthanasia
Length: 698 words (2 double-spaced pages)
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Euthanasia is when an ill person or somebody with a major disability
wants to end their own life to stop their pain or so their family and
friends can be free of looking after them, it's not just when somebody
is ill but it is also when they decide enough is enough. There are
many types of euthanasia.
Voluntary euthanasia - when the ill person chooses to ask to die but
is incapable of committing suicide without any help. This is often
called 'assisted suicide'
Involuntary euthanasia - when other people decide that it would be
best if someone's life ends because he or she is not able to make such
Active euthanasia - when action is taken to bring a life to an end;
for example a lethal dose of drugs may be administered. This is
against the law.
Positive euthanasia - when action is taken to bring life to an end by
stopping giving treatment so death will be a result.
Euthanasia is a complicated issue now days as there are so many
medical treatments available to keep people alive. If somebody is
badly injured and losses the ability to think and feel forever and
there is no chance of recovering they can still be kept alive for a
long time. If a new born baby is born with abnormality's it can be
artificially kept alive. Euthanasia is not just about killing people,
there is more to it than that. Its deciding when enough is enough and
sometimes it can be kinder to let people go than letting them carry on
being in pain.
The quality of life of the patient is one of the main issues with
euthanasia. If someone can communicate and is not in unbearable pain
then euthanasia would be wrong but if someone can not communicate and
is in unbearable pain then most people would agree euthanasia is the
The Baptist church in the UK teaches that euthanasia is much like
abortion and raises the same sort of issues - if people have the right
to choose to take away a human life or not. Generally the Baptists are
against euthanasia as they believe that all human life is sacred.
Although Baptist will usually agree that when a person is 'brain dead'
and medical experts agree that the patient has no chance of recovery,
then it is acceptable to stop treatment and allow the person to die.
The Church of England agrees that the sanctity of life is important
but agrees that doctors do not have to do everything to keep a patient
alive, no matter what the quality of life is. The church also stresses
that it is important to make the old and the ill feel valuable and to
make the old feel important as members of society
The Roman Catholic Church is extremely against euthanasia and teaches
that anything that purposely brings death is murder; it is fine that
some drugs which are intended to relieve pain can also shorten life as
this is thought of as acceptable. The Roman Catholic
Church says that 'ordinary' treatment such as feeding the patient has
to continue but 'extraordinary' treatment like a major operation that
probably wont work, doesn't have to be given. The church strongly
feels that the sick deserve and need special care.
Biblical teachings used in a discussion about euthanasia may be.
"God made man his own image". This means that human life is a gift
form god. It is sacred and has dignity. We only live because god wants
us to so we shouldn't choose when people can die. We should wait and
let god choose.
"After sunset all who had friends who were sick with various diseases
brought them to Jesus. Jesus placed his hands on every one of them and
made them well". This shows Jesus took the time to care for the sick.
He was happy to care for them and never ignored their needs. So we
should care for people instead of just killing them or making a
decision to let them die.
Christians may discus euthanasia with other people, maybe a priest or
another Christian or even a non believer to see peoples different view
points. They may go and join a 'pro-life' organisation. Also sometimes
their beliefs may affect the way they vote in an election as one party
may believe euthanasia is right but another party may believe
euthanasia is wrong, if the person has very strong views about
euthanasia this could affect there voting decision. Also they might
take part in ways to show there opinions against euthanasia, this may
be shown as a protest or a demonstration.
"Euthanasia can never be justified"
I disagree with this as I believe euthanasia should be allowed. If
somebody is in so much pain with a terminal illness they don't want to
live anymore they should be allowed to die peacefully with dignity.
Also if somebody is going to waste away I feel they should be allowed
to die so they can say goodbye to friends and family while they are
still capable to. I think that the British government should legalise
euthanasia but have stick rules such as only a qualified doctor is
allowed to administer the drugs etc, there has to be two doctors in
the room as they administer the drugs and there has to be a signed
agreement from the family or if possible the patient and the family.
Christians tend to disagree with this as they believe only god has the
right to choose when people die as he created each and every one of