This is a very controversial topic and issue. It is all about assisting someone else to end his life or to simply die. The issue of the right to die has been there since ancient times. There are many terms which are used to describe this issue. For instance some may call it assisted suicide, euthanasia or even the right to die. There are many ongoing debates about the same.
People have many reasons which may be valid to some extend for their desire to want to die. People who are mostly affected by this issue are the terminally ill patients. Some times these people loose all the hope of ever recovering and because of the intense pain and torture that they may be going through they often want to be helped to end their life (Ferguson, 2007). The issue of assisted suicide can be looked at from many perspectives. For instance, one can look at the issue from a medical, religious or even a legal perspective. The thesis statement of this essay is: people have a right to die.
The concept of people having a right to choose to die was as a result of the idea which explains that every person has the right of ownership over his life and body. Therefore, they can do whatever they wish with their body. The self ownership concept emphasizes that an individual has exclusive control over his life therefore no one else has a right to deny him some of his choices which may include a choice to die. People are therefore perceived to be sovereign individuals in that they have full control over their decisions. It therefore means that governments should not interfere with a person’s choice and decisions as long as they are not harmful to any other person. Despite of all this, states seem to have legitimate interest in the matter in order to prevent illogical suicides.
The Right to DieBasing on the concept of the right to die a lot of emphasis has been put on the rational choice of an individual. Proponents of the concept emphasizes that one should decide to die basing on self will and not due to pressure from family or friends or even medical practitioners. For example the religion of Hinduism permits its follower to die if they have no hope of living and important responsibilities to accomplish (Ferguson, 2007). They therefore, allow their believers to end their lives through a continuous fasting, an action that is perceived by many to be not violent. Assisted suicide simply means permitting a chronically ill individual to end his life unnaturally.
Many people refer this idea to “dying without pain”. Numerous debate are ongoing about the concept particularly on who should be allowed to end his or her life because it is very obvious that some people may take this advantage and end their lives unreasonable.One of the main issues about this concept is whether every person has a right to die or it should only be for a few selected individuals like the terminally ill patients who are forced by their circumstances. For instance, one of the American courts declared that the right to end ones life is only applicable to patients with chronic illness or rather life threatening complications. On the contrary the advocate for suicide Mr. Minelli emphasizes that this right is applicable to every person who is competent (Zucker & Zucker, 1997).
Some suggests that the right to terminate one’s life is a good test for general societal freedom. People with chronic illness often wish that they should be allowed to die by their caregivers. For instance, they can be aided to die by not supporting them to continue to live through several ways which include; removal of life supporting machines, withdrawal of important medication. This is only to be done when all chances of survival are highly impossible.Assisted suicide can also be done with the help of a physician in control and this is what is refereed to as euthanasia.
There are several types of euthanasia for instance passive euthanasia. Passive euthanasia is where the patient with the chronic illness is not in a position to decide on the treatment. A patient with chronic illness is legally allowed to make his treatment decisions (Zucker & Zucker, 1997). Most people do not consider this practice as euthanasia because many people who make such decisions often make their decisions known. For instance, some of them would prefer soothing care as a way of eliminating suffering and the associated pain.
Patients are normally allowed to write their values and priorities that they would have loved to fulfill before they die prior to the practice. This is among the most valued documents on addition to Medical Durable Power of Attorney (MDPOA).These documents play crucial role in the legal cases about the same. For instance they ensure that the person who interprets the MDPOA is the recommended one. There are only a few countries that have gone a head and allowed voluntary euthanasia.
One of these countries is Netherlands. This type of euthanasia is where a terminally ill patient voluntarily decides to end his life by refusing life supporting machines or crucial medication. Proponents of the concept and many physicians continue to argue strongly that denying physician assisted suicide is a complete violation of the freedom rights of the patient. This is because they strongly believe that a proficient terminally ill patient should be given the freedom to decide on whether to continue using the life supporting machine or other saving treatment or even choose to die.Unfortunately the American constitution is silent on whether it is unlawfully to end one’s life and as a result many people end up dying indecently. This is because if they had allowed physician assisted suicide many terminally ill patients could have died in a decent manner the exact opposite of what goes on.
Before an individual reach the point of terminating their lives it is quite evident that the options for recovery are over (Scherer & Simon, 1999). Therefore, it doesn’t look so welcoming for such an individual to be denied this opportunity. From this perspective it very evident that physician assisted suicide is a solution to terminating excruciating human pain which is as a result of some of these chronic illnesses. Some of the advantages of assisted suicide include reduced medical bills as well as elimination of psychological pain. As long as a patient remains alive the bills continue to pile up and most of the time these patients spend all the family wealth on medication yet they are not assured of saving their lives.Another important benefit of allowing assisted suicide is that it frees most of the physicians.
In America and other countries there is an acute shortage of medical staff therefore when some of these unchangeable conditions reduce there will be many staff to handle other issues that need their attention (Scherer & Simon, 1999). On addition, the funds that are channeled to help terminally ill patients can be transferred to other sectors like prenatal which need much help. Opponents of assisted euthanasia usually look at it from a spiritual perspective in terms of religion. These people view life as a very precious gift from the Supreme God, something that is beyond human control. For instance, Christians do belief that the power to end and give life solely lies in the hands of God therefore it is wrong for one to end it willfully under whatever circumstances.
Other people look at the issue from a morally perspective in that it is morally wrong for one to end his or her life therefore it is generally unacceptable.The governments and most of the influential leaders always want to build and maintain a culture that values life. Most people consider life to be very pressures at whatever given stage and therefore the issue of willfully ending it should not be an issue of wrong or right. One of the basic freedoms of life is a decent death (Behuniak & Svenson, 2003). Therefore, when the relevant high court allows its people to die in a respectful way it makes the people to look at the decision to die as a godly moral choice for the afflicted person. It is quite interesting that in almost all parts of America attempted suicide or rather suicide is not a violation of the American law though helping one to end his life is considered as an offense.
This action leaves many people shocked because they really don’t know if they should just commit suicide or ask for the permission to be helped to die decently. There have been people who allowed patients in difficult pain to end there life as a way of doing them justice. Therefore, whether we look at this issue from a religious, legal or even moral perspective it is important to understand that this people experience unbearable pain. Therefore it is not fair for any one to deny such a patient his or her freedom to life as well as their right to die. Everyone deceives a decent and respectable death.