Euthanasia has been debated for decades. There are many who support it and many who don’t. Should someone who is terminally ill or suffering be allowed to die willingly? Should anyone assist the ailing to fulfill that wish? Is it really mercy killing, assisted suicide or just murder?
Death is always an uncomfortable topic for many but it’s a natural part of life. Before anyone can begin to have a conversation about whether or not they would consider this option as death approaches, we need to understand what it is.
What is euthanasia?
Euthanasia, the practice of ending a life prematurely in order to end pain and suffering, is currently considered a criminal offense in most states.
Euthanasia and withdrawing life support are covered by health care law. Whether either is allowed varies from state to state. Euthanasia is a word generally used to describe mercy killing, which differs from assisted suicide in that the patient or person in pain is killed by someone else.
What is Physician Assisted Death?
Physician-assisted suicide is the voluntary termination of one’s own life by administration of a lethal substance with the direct or indirect assistance of a physician.
In what states is it legal?
Euthanasia is illegal in most of the United States. Physician aid in dying (PAD), or assisted suicide, is legal in the states of Washington, Oregon, California, and Vermont; its status is disputed in Montana.
Many people feel a person has the right to end their own life, especially if they know that death will be full of pain and suffering. Others consider this to be an act of committing suicide and believe it’s immoral, mainly due to religious beliefs.
What if you had a loved one who was terminal and in a constant state of agony and pain? If they asked to end it all, would you be ok with it? Would you help them through the process? Would you be there until the end?
No one likes to talk about death. It’s inevitable and will happen to us all. If people get to choose how they live, shouldn’t they be able to choose how they die?
~ Jack Manza
Here are some of the pros and cons of euthanasia.