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Write To Die

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How would you feel if you were no longer allowed to make decisions by yourself? Suicide is your own choice but when it comes to assisted suicide that right is taken away. Assisted suicide is when a person is allowed access to medical assistance to end their lives voluntarily, when and how they choose. It is like a comfortable death, and having a doctor giving someone a prescribed medicine knowing it will end their life. Assisted suicide should absolutely be allowed. If a person is really in that much pain that they would rather die than keep on suffering, why not let them? People in many countries are debating whether or not the government should make it legal to help with suicide. Supporters of assisted suicide argue that people are already allowed to refuse medical treatment even when they know that they will die without it. If people can choose death in this passive way, why should they not be allowed to choose it more actively? It is morally right for someone to have the choice of letting go of their life while in pain but sadly it is not legal in most states.

As of now, Oregon is the only state that allows assisted suicide legally. It’s the only state that allows doctors to be able to use medicine that let them help end a dying patient's life while staying clear of criminal prosecution. All of the other states do not allow this. There is no rational basis though upon which the government can properly prevent an individual from choosing to end his or her own life(Bowden). A person should have the right to choose to end a life that is causing them pain they don't deserve. Oregon allows the patient to have a free choice to administer the lethal dose to himself. The law says that a patient must make two oral requests for the lethal drugs, at least two weeks apart, before the doctor can prescribe them (Enouen).This helps show that the person really wants to end their life so what’s the problem with that? The government should not be in control of how a person's life ends. They don't choose if they get hit by a car or shot so why do they choose if they take a lethal dose to kill themself? The doctor does not get pressed with criminal charges because the patient has requested it and signed off on it. The doctor must be instructed by the patient to stand by and let him suffer. If it is what this man really wants it should be what he does.


If a doctor can help end someone's life, can a husband? An Auckland man was charged with helping his chronically ill wife commit suicide(New Zealand Herald). His wife was diagnosed with an aggressive form of multiple sclerosis which has no cure. As her situation worsened, the couple began to research suicide methods and assembled a kit. He left her alone and when he came home she was dead. Now, the man is being charged with assisting her to commit suicide and attempted murder and faces a maximum penalty of 14 years in prison. The family believed that New Zealand should allow Assisted Suicide by a professional because it is safer and the family can be with them. Animals are also allowed to be put down using euthanasia so why can't humans? A person dying in a hospital bed having nobody listening to them calling out sounds a lot like an animal to me.

There are several problems that this law causes. Some people may say that it is morally wrong to choose for another person to help you end your own life. They believe that it is like dying like a dog, and no man should go through that. They also believe that it is much more cost effective and easier to let people kill themselves than having to pay for the medicine. Then again having them alive means paying for all of their medical treatment such as medications, feeding tubes, and breathing machines(Asch). Opposing viewers say it’s morally better to do it yourself than have another person do it for you. One fear is that dying people might not receive proper care if euthanasia appeared to be a cheaper, easier alternative(“Assisted Suicide”). Wesley J. Smith, an anti-euthanasia advocate, says “euthanasia and assisted suicide have gone...from the unthinkable, to the debatable, to the justify, on its way to unexceptional”. The Death with Dignity Act applies no penalties to doctors who do not report that they prescribed the drugs to the patient. This means there is no way to know how many assisted-suicide deaths are actually occurring. Only 64% of patients who received the prescriptions are known to die from it. DWDA records show that 455 people have requested lethal drugs from their physician and 292 people have died from using them(Enouen). Some people think this is patients changing their minds. People see this as a waste of medicine.

So, how would you feel if you were no longer allowed to make decisions by yourself? As of 2012, Washington has joined Oregon in the states that allow Physician suicide. Only two states out of all fifty allow people to end their life in a way they choose. A person helping commit suicide will be charged with murder. That should not be happening. This should be allowed in all states because it is a personal decision that should not be judged or chosen by someone else. Countries are debating whether or not it is morally wrong and if it should be allowed or not. It should be allowed because it gives a person an easy way to die and be able to be with their family. If one is suffering why must they go through all of it if they can just stop it all? Why do people think that the person should have to do it alone in a way that is even more inhumane, killing themselves? It is morally right for someone to have the choice of letting go of their life while in pain but sadly it is not legal in most states.


Citations:

-"Assisted Suicide." Current Issues: Macmillan Social Science Library. Detroit: Gale, 2010. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 27 Apr. 2012.

-Asch, Adrienne. "The Wish to Die Is Based on Social as Well as Medical Issues."Assisted Suicide. Ed. Karen F. Balkin. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, 2005. Current Controversies. Rpt. from "Recognizing Death While Affirming Life."Hastings Center Special Report (Nov.-Dec. 2005): S31-S35. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 27 Apr. 2012.

-Bowden, Thomas A., and Ayn Rand Institute. "Individuals Should Have a Legal Right to Choose Death." Assisted Suicide. Ed. Karen F. Balkin. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, 2005. Current Controversies. Rpt. from "After Ten Years, States Still Resist Assisted Suicide." 2007. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 27 Apr. 2012.

-Enouen, Susan W. "Legalized Assisted Suicide May Lead to Legalized Euthanasia."Assisted Suicide. Ed. Karen F. Balkin. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, 2005. Current Controversies. Rpt. from "Oregon's Euthanasia Law: It's About Far More than the Number of People Dying." Life Issues Connector (July 2007). Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 27 Apr. 2012.

-"Man charged with helping wife die EXCLUSIVE." New Zealand Herald [Auckland, New Zealand] 10 Apr. 2012: 3. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 27 Apr. 2012.





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