In recent years, the term “assisted suicide” has been heard with negative undertones in the United States. Many are perplexed by the idea that bills have recently been passed in select states that allow doctors to painlessly terminate a patient’s life upon their request. This idea has been condemned for decades but is finally gaining some traction in the legal community. The fact of the matter is that millions of people who have been diagnosed with terminal illnesses are being forced to live out the rest of their days in misery. If a person is on their deathbed, shouldn’t they get to die on their own terms without months or even years spent suffering, waiting to die? It may sound morbid, but why should someone be forced to stay alive just because lawmakers, who have never had to deal with terminal illness, are afraid that it is immoral. Each and every one of us should have the right to decide what happens to our bodies. If someone is in such an immense amount of pain and that they want to terminate their life, they should have the option to do so without being controlled by third parties.
One of the main reasons that people have been so opposed to death with dignity laws is the terminology that has been used to refer to it. The term “assisted suicide” has often been thrown around to refer to the act of respectfully discontinuing one’s own life. In a 2013 survey, “[seventy] percent of respondents agreed that when patients and their families wanted it, doctors should be allowed to ‘end the patient’s life by some painless means.’ However, in that same survey, only [fifty-one] percent supported allowing doctors to help a dying patient ‘commit suicide’ (Gonchar 1). The reason this law has not been passed in all fi...
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...of its legislation and the lives in which it pertains to.
Every day we are told to live on our own terms. There are endless quotes and pieces of literature that suggest just that. Everyone wants to live for the moment and experience their own life and not live it for anyone but themselves. All of that is wonderful; no one should be forced to live their life on someone else’s terms. But for some reason, the same does not apply to death. One can live freely and honorably but when it comes to the topic of death, suddenly everyone is oppressed. A society where terminally ill patients cannot choose when they die is a society where people are slaves to their own deaths. People with cancer or advanced heart disease are condemned to a life sentence of heart wrenching pain just because some politician says so. Everyone should have the right to die as they lived: respectfully.
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