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Euthanasia is one of the most controversial topics in America and in the international community. Belgium, which legalized adult euthanasia in 2002, has recently legalized euthanasia for children on February 13 2014. During the event that a child is terminally ill, he or she can now request whether they want to die, with the help of the doctor. As a result of Belgium’s ruling, a new level of controversy has been added to the debate of euthanasia. Within the Belgium parliament the decision for the ruling was based not on the age of the person, but on their maturity. According to Jean-Jacques De Gucht, a co-sponsor of the Child Euthanasia bill, “There is no age limit on suffering, we have to look at the maturity of the people, and if they’re completely able to make the choice, not their age” (Gerlin). Opponents of Belgium’s euthanasia ruling have charged that children can be manipulated into death because children may not understand the concept of euthanasia, and a terminal illness can be objectively defined. Proponents argue euthanasia is beneficial with the proper regulation; supplies are not wasted on critically ill patients, and euthanasia is ultimately a human right and is more merciful then letting a patient suffer in pain; Alternatively, opponents argue that allowing euthanasia as a common medical practice will lead to the decline of medical ethics, a greater acceptance of murder and suicide, and the abuse of the concept of “right to die.” The impact of the Belgium ruling not only brought the topic of euthanasia back into current discussion, it also reignited the push for euthanasia within the United States. For example, a recent court ruling in New Mexico now “prevents the prosecution of physician aid in dying” (Sander, Har... ... middle of paper ... ...ultimately, the legal murder of patients with or without their permission. Both sides of the euthanasia debate have equally strong arguments. The supporters of euthanasia argue that it will lead to less medical supply waste, patients are benefited with the proper regulation and euthanasia is a human right. Opponents argue that euthanasia will lead to the decline of medical ethics, the greater acceptance of murder and suicide and the abuse behind the concept of “right to die”. Based on the evidence presented, for each side of the argument, Euthanasia should not be legalized, because many doctor’s morals and ethics will be put at odds with that of their patients, ultimately eroding the relationship that is the foundation for practicing medicine. Euthanasia will blur the lines between murder and suicide, and lastly the practice behind euthanasia is ripe for abuse.
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