Euthanasia

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorHigh School, 12th grade February 2008

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Euthanasia, the so-called "mercy killing", is it merciful solution or is it murder? Should euthanasia be legalized? That is a dilemma to face in many countries. Quite a few people recently maintain that mercy killing should no longer be a criminal offense but a quiet and compassionate ending for despairing patients. The public should respect the patients' final decision for they have the right to die in dignity. Hence euthanasia should become legalized. For my part, I disagree with the argument because it has highly potential danger that cannot be safely solved.

It is an undeniable fact that euthanasia has some positive aspects. For example, a lot of medicines cannot be used for too long and pain cannot always be satisfactorily controlled, so euthanasia can reduce patients' pain and end their suffering during some terminal illness. However, there are many more negative aspects than positive ones.

The most important reason to consider why euthanasia should not be legislated is no one has the right to kill another human being.

In fact, euthanasia as an act that defies the order of nature, which is a criminal offence equal to murder, no matter what the circumstances are.

Another important reason that should be considered is that a doctor's responsibility is to cure patients, but not to act as an executioner. It is the doctor's bounden duty and obligation to give his special knowledge and skill to curing the sick, easing pain, healing the wounded and rescuing the dying, but not killing them. To use medical skills for killing, is a tragedy that tarnishes the Hippocratic Oath.

Last but not least, euthanasia could be misused for criminal purpose. Allowing the competent patient to be euthanized will lead to a high risk of abusing euthanasia from assisted suicide to legalized murder against those who lack competence. For example, some greedy families could gain a legacy from a dying person. Another case that could be found is some doctors might use euthanasia deliberately in order to confuse or cover up mistakes they had made during treatment.

In brief, I am strongly opposed to the legalization of euthanasia without a thorough investigation and preparation. It is not yet a suitable time to do such a controversial act. I believed that letting nature take its course is the best choice.