The Right To Die

by Louis-Philippe.Hache on September 20, 2013 - 11:24pm

 

                We all know that our body, as age goes on, slowly begins to decay naturally. Bones grow weaker, cells regenerate slower and our immune system weakens considerably. This leaves us at risk to more dangerous forms of diseases, as well as heart, liver, or any major organ malfunction. In today’s world we have the means to cure a great deal of diseases but sometimes, the disease gets the better part of us and leaves us paralyzed, agonizing or even in a vegetative state. In such cases, some patients have shown the will to terminate their lives to end the suffering they feel day by day. Assisted suicide is still a very controversial subject in many countries and I chose this topic because I have had family members go through various stages of cancer, some less peaceful than others. This article analyses the boundaries of when it is acceptable to consider assisting in the suicide of a patient.

As it stands today, should we legalize assisted suicide to suffering patients who desire to be set free of their dysfunctional body?

            I believe that assisted suicide should not even be an issue in the first place. There comes an age when I believe people have truly had enough of the suffering they endure every day. If I had to wake up every day to excruciating pain, unable to move freely, to have to be force fed only to survive the end of the day to go to a painless sleep at night; I sure as hell wouldn’t want to stick around for long. At that point, what is actually the purpose of going through the day? To simply endure? Plus, suicide isn’t illegal so why should someone who desires it not be allowed to carry it through in a controlled environment? Some people do it simply by refusing treatment and let themselves die off, and maybe go somewhere better. It is very tiring for elderly people to take multiple blood test, go through various therapies such as chemotherapy. And for what? Two, maybe three more years in some cases? At the end of her life, I could see the pain in my aunt’s eyes once she practically couldn’t move anymore and I know I wouldn’t want to have to go through that painful process.

            However, I do realize that some people aren’t quite mentally prepared when they ask for such a thing. Some of the patients may not be in a healthy state of mind and should be refused to make sure he is not killed accidently. The article also made a point of how this could also be used for selfish reasons. Some family members could pressure this choice to gain access to inheritance faster. Also some people who aren’t able to communicate it could want to live very badly but are simply exhausted of being cared for as the article states:  “He wanted to live — just not in the hospital, with poisons in his blood. He was sick and tired of feeling sick and tired.” Lastly I understand that simply the act of killing another human willingly, for whatever reason could be seen as wrong and should be permitted.

Do you think we dedicate too much time to try and  extend life as long as possible when it sometimes simply isn't worth living?

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/03/opinion/sunday/weighing-the-end-of-life.html?ref=assistedsuicide

 

            

Comments

As people grow older, their health tends to deteriorate rapidly. They usually have more diseases, go under more serious illness and experience agonizing pain, too.
The role of modern medical technology emerges here. Thanks to the cutting edge medical technologies, as majority of people wished, average life expectancy has had increased dramatically.
In this clause, however, it includes one premise that people actually had a desire to live longer. At first place, they were the ones who are seeking a way for lengthening the life expectancy and in the middle of the research, they discovered surgeries and treatments. Through various fails and evolutions, eventually medical practices successfully figured out the way to cure certain diseases. Currently, therefore, there are tremendous patients who had cured the diseases and extend their life. This naturally heightened the average of life expectancy.
So, what if the patient does not want to live longer by not getting the treatment? As mentioned in the article, what if the patient have to go under even more distressing treatment and agonizing surgery that they think not worth the life? Is there a point for life living just for survival?
I definitely agree with you. As the medical practices were at first place started by human choice and desire to live longer life, what is wrong if they choose not to live it? If it commenced with the free will, people should surely have to right to refuse it, too. It is the patient choice.
I think in order to ensure this right; people have to go back to the basic rules of medical practice which is legal issue. Not only debating with the doctors or courts, but the law for euthanasia should be established. People should legislate standard of qualifying the patients for euthanasia, such as how much stable the patient should be, what kind of disease the patient is undergoing and are they are really in an environment which is stable enough to give them a credit.
However, what should we do for the children who do not know how to express their opinion? This is an article that the babies were euthanized by their parents. Is it right that babies, who do not even know what the world is, deprived their right to experience it? It is also against free will. Isn’t it?
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2261985/Belgian-twin-brothers-ki...

Health and happiness are without doubt the two values closest to my heart, and considering that they have a strong connection with the topic you chose, I was highly inclined to comment on your article. Additionally, human life is something that is naturally valued in our society, which makes it so any controversies associated with it often cause quite a commotion.

In the case of infant euthanasia, my opinion would vary greatly according to the situation. For example, if the baby is born with a severe handicap, which is absolutely sure to mar his/her quality of life in the future and prove to be an obstacle to happiness, then I agree with the euthanasia of the infant. However, I believe that doctors, or a panel of doctors, should decide the fate of the baby: we wouldn't want parents to take deafness as an excuse to get rid of an undesired child since it isn't to their liking. I simply cannot think of another situation in which infant euthanasia is acceptable. However, one could argue that children born with severe handicaps should be able to live and chose whether or not they wish to keep living once they attain legal age. Who knows, since they've never lived without their disability, they might still be able to live a full and satisfying life full of happiness. This is when the panel I talked about earlier could come into play on if the individual going to suffer too much, or if he/she should be given the chance to decide for themselves considering that the disability is bearable.

In regards to adult euthanasia, I think that it should absolutely and immediately be legalized everywhere, under the circumstances that the patient is deemed sane enough to take such a decision. If a person's health is too deteriorated, and his/her quality of life has reached a pathetic level, then the person should be allowed to be set free. Moreover, I believe that happiness is something everyone should aspire to, and if someone feels that happiness can no longer be attained due to illness, then euthanasia is highly acceptable. Also, I agree with your argument that some families might use euthanasia as means to get the inheritance faster, therefore, I think that the patient is the only one that should have a say in his/her fate, except in the case of a permanent state of coma.

Here is an article containing solely pro-euthanasia arguments and they are actually quite interested to read: http://www.bbc.co.uk/ethics/euthanasia/infavour/infavour_1.shtml#h3