Euthanasia Essay: Assisted Suicide and Dr. Kevorkian

Euthanasia Essay: Assisted Suicide and Dr. Kevorkian

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     Dr. Jack Kevorkian was sentenced fifteen to twenty

years in jail for a second degree murder charge.  There is no doubt

that Dr. Kevorkian injected lethal drugs into Thomas Youk, killing him

within minutes.  But was the murder committed as an act of rage?  No,

it was done as an act of kindness.


            For the past ten years, Dr. Kevorkian has been performing assisted

suicides.  In that time, Kevorkian claims to have eased the suffering

of 130 patients.  He has also been fighting to legalize euthanasia. 

There are some people that support Kevorkian’s views of euthanasia,

yet there are still many people that think that what Kevorkian is

doing is wrong.  Until the later part of April, when he was convicted

of second degree murder, Kevorkian had been found not guilty of

assisted suicide charges on four separate accounts.  Is Jack

Kevorkian’s actions one of a hero or of a madman?


            Currently, the only state that assisted suicide is legal is Oregon.

 Euthanasia is illegal everywhere in the United States.  Euthanasia is

a better option than assisted suicide.  Euthanasia differs from

assisted suicide in that the physician actually injects the lethal

drug instead of prescribing it.  Because patients are required to take

the lethal drug themselves, there is the chance that they may take the

drug the wrong way.  This could cause the patient to survive the

lethal dose and do more harm.  There is a twenty-five percent chance

that a patient will fail to kill themselves by assisted suicide (Smith



            Dr. Kevorkian, the most outspoken euthanasia activist in the United


... middle of paper ...

argument is wrong.


Works Cited

Corry, John.  "Who is Jack Kevorkian, Really?"  Reader’s Digest.  April 1999:  87-92.

Goldstein, Frederick J.  "Dr. Jack Kevorkian:  Friend or Foe?"  The Journal of Clinical Pharmacology.  January 1997:  1-3.

Grace, Julie.  "Curtains for Dr. Death."  Time 5 Apr. 1999:  48.

Lessenberry, Jack.  "Death Becomes Him."  Vanity Fair July 1994:  102-113.

McHugh, Paul R.  "The Kevorkian Epidemic."  The American Scholar.  Vol. 66.  1997:  15-27.

Nelan, Bruce W.  "Fasting for the Right to Die."  Time 15 Nov. 1993:  89.

Shapiro, Joseph P.  "Dr. Death Has Yet Another Day in Court."  U.S. News and World Report 29 Mar. 1999:  37.

Shapiro, Joseph P.  "Dr. Death’s Last Dance."  U.S. News and World Report.  26 Apr. 1999:  44.

Smith, Wesley J.  "Death Wars."  National Review 14 Jul. 1997:  36-37.


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