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Ethical and Legal Debates on Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia Essay

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One of the greatest miracles in life, is life itself, but where is life there’s death. So as unexpected as life is shall death be the same, or can we choose on how we leave this earth. Over the years, the laws and ethical consternation regarding the debatable subject of euthanasia and assisted suicide, have been questioned frequently by society. Though the question may never be answered between euthanasia and assisted suicide being right or wrong, the fact of the matter is that people are still choosing their fate.


In America, euthanasia refers to a person knowingly, and purposely taking another persons life, or in a more factual meaning killing someone who in fact couldn’t kill himself. Euthanasia also known as “mercy killing” is in fact considered homicide, which would make it illegal in every state. Assisted suicide refers to person knowingly giving another person the resources to commit suicide. Assisted suicide is also considered as medical treatment in certain states (Oregon) is in fact legal if you meet certain requirements. So while euthanasia and assisted suicide both end up with the same conclusion, they both have different consequences that follow.


Another untold aspect between euthanasia and assisted suicide is the techniques both of them are carried out. While euthanasia could actually be done by any means ( a daughter poisoning her mother, or a husband smothering his spouse with a pillow), assisted suicide has to be performed humanely and correctly for it to be legal. Assisted suicide can be performed many ways, one of the most common known is Principle of Double Effect (Gibson, 2012). Principle of Double Effect is when a physician prescribes a patient a large amount of painkillers, with the intent of helping the...


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... kill (or destroy) yourselves, for verily Allah has been to you most Merciful.' (Quran 4:29). So based off of religion alone assisted suicide and euthanasia would be unethical and/or a sin in the eyes of their lord.

Underlying the ethical and legal debates over assisted suicide and euthanasia are a number of issues that focus upon the Patient, worldviews, family, and religion. Some positions on assisted suicide and euthanasia can be based upon assumptions regarding the psychodynamics to request assistance in suicide, which can be evaluated only with more research in the future. But In the meantime, a patient that is requesting assistance with suicide from a physician should receive their wish, but continue to search and try to identify other ways to relieve suffering. Although life is valuable and sacred a person should have the right to choose how they should die.


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