19 November 2002
Should They Have The Right?
In recent years the debate over the question of whether terminally ill
people should have the legal right to obtain a physicians help in ending
their lives has intensified. People possess assurance in the conviction
that mentally ill patients should have the right to seek a physician’s
assistance to bring about an end to their lives.
Within approximately every state, assisted suicide has not been
prohibited or conceded by law. Over twenty state legislatures have
considered and defeated similar laws.
Respected medical professionals occupy their positions on either side
of this debate. Much like the controversy over abortion, this debate is
emotionally charged in which morality, medical ethics, as well as religion
all play their parts. Both opponents and proponents of assisted suicide
believe that their position is the most compassionate and morally correct
Should mentally competent terminally ill people encompass the right to
seek a physician’s assistance in this matter? A terminally ill individual
should have the privilege to establish how and when to surrender the
struggle for his or her own existence. Terminally ill people should have
the right to “die with dignity” and to avoid a prolonged death in which
they may be in excruciating pain, heavily medicated, and completely
dependent on others for help in completing every day tasks. People are
anxious of this type of suffering and helplessness that corresponds with
this type of death, and if given the chance, would prefer not to endure
Assisted suicide must be legalized. If a person’s life has
deteriorated to the point of misery, then no government or medical facility
should be allowed to force that person to go on living in misery. There is
minute difference between the right to refuse treatment to continue life,
and the right to obtain medication to terminate life. Supporters say that
legal assisted suicide is a compassionate response to dying people who want
to know that they can choose a death that they feel is dignified if they
decide to do so.
Many physicians already help their terminally ill patients to die by
prescribing them overdoses of legal drugs when asked to do so. Bearing in
mind that this practice is recurrent, it should be legalized and regulated.
Physicians can be given guidelines to follow on this practice to ensure
that safeguards are implemented.
Those against assisted suicide say that legalization will have
disastrous consequences for the patients. How can this be so? Must these
individuals actually be made to suffer in such a way that they experience
embarrassment for the reasons that they are dependent? Should individuals
be required to experience pain to the extremity of his or her demise?
Nobody would wish to endure this agony. The issue of assisted suicide
should not be a controversial topic. Nobody desires to experience the pain
of life-threatening illness. Should he or she be required to tolerate the
agony, when there is only a questionable amount of time?
The caring for and emotional anguish caused for the loved ones
involved should also be considered. When there is not anything to look
forward to, he or she stands by and watches as the individual that they
love gradually fades away. Loved ones ought to be able to advance forward
and establish in on his or her grieving process. Instead, he or she goes
all the way through this grueling process more than once. He or she
commences the initial grieving process
as soon as their loved one is diagnosed with this terminal illness. In
addition, they begin the grieving process for a second time once they have
witnessed them pass.
Individuals should possess the privilege to choose whether he or
she wants to undergo pain for the remainder of his or her existence. If
they desire, he or she should not have to endure the agony that goes along
with the medical condition in which he or she has been forced to subsist
with. When terminally ill patients are given medication to cease their
pain, they are given so much medication that they sometimes do not know who
they are. Individuals should not be required to undergo this type of
experience. People who are opposed to assisted suicide have not had the
experience of suffering the loss of someone with a terminal illness.
Terminally ill patients are given a hesitant amount of time to reside in
this world, and this time is not in respectable health. They are very
distraught under the medication that they are given, and when not given
medication, can endure serious pain.
Individuals should not be forced to endure pain of this enormity.
Nobody should require an individual to suffer with a terminal illness when
there are other opportunities for him or her to explore. There are many
things in life for which individuals take for granted, yet it is okay for
us to sit and watch as the individuals that people love suffer.