The Euthanasia Debate

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Euthanasia is defined as the painless killing of a terminally ill patient by means of lethal injection by a doctor in a controlled medical environment. Similarly, physician assisted suicide (PAS) is when a patient requests a lethal prescription from a doctor or pharmacist to end their life before a fatal disease does. The two are akin to each other and are almost interchangeable in definitions. Being a highly controversial topic, there is a plethora of arguments surrounding PAS, all very emotionally driven and opinionated. There are those who firmly believe that euthanasia should be legal, pointing to morality and ethics to defend their position. On the other side, of course, are those who are inflexibly against the idea of assisted suicide and wish for it to be banned immediately. Right behind them are the individuals who find PAS completely unnecessary, questioning the position of a doctor the moment they participate in assisted suicide. Finally is the notion that people have the right to euthanasia, finding protection in the US Constitution. All sides pose very solid and cohesive arguments with plenty of understandable points and respectable views.
In America, there are quite a bit of people who fervently believe that physician assisted suicide should be legalized. However, only two states have legalized PAS; Oregon and Washington. These two states present very strict guidelines to those who request a physician’s assistance with suicide, making assisted suicide deaths a very rare occurrence while ensuring the safety of the patient. Oregon was the first to pass a law allowing PAS (Oregon Death with Dignity Act 1994), cautiously establishing a rigid line of protocol that must be followed before anyone goes through with suicide...

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...to PAS will always butt heads with those who find it to be unnecessary. It’s hard to say if anything will change, for each side has very valid arguments and strong points that will cause the debate of assisted suicide to persist for a long, long time.

Works Cited

Griswold, Ann. “Counterpoint: Euthanasia Should Be Banned.” Points Of View: Euthanasia (2013): 3. Points of View Reference Center. Web. 15 Jan. 2014.
Pearson, John. “Point: Assisted Suicide Is Unnecessary.” Points Of View: Assisted Suicide (2013): 5. Points of View Reference Center. Web. 15 Jan. 2014.
Stokely, Anne. “Counterpoint: The Right To Assisted Suicide.” Points Of View: Assisted Suicide (2013): 6. Points of View Reference Center. Web. 15 Jan. 2014.
Walter, Andrew. “Point: Euthanasia Should Be Legal.” Points Of View: Assisted Suicide (2013): 2. Points of View Reference Center. Web. 15 Jan. 2014.

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