Euthanasia

Euthanasia is defined as "a painless

killing,espacially to end a painful and

incurable disease;mercy killing". The

righteousness of this act is being debated

in several countries throughout the

world,and Canada is no exception.Euthanasisa

must not be accepted for religious,legal and

medical reasons,as alternatives to such a

dramatic end.


To begin,the law,both civil and

religious,forbid killing. Individuals are

prosecuted in courts of law for committing

murder. An example of this is the case of

Robert Latimer. Although he claimed to have

mercifully ended the life of his daughter

who suffered from an extreme case of

cerebral palsy,he was convicted of murder in

the second digree. The courts were obliged





to find him guilty as he broke the law by

taking the life of another human being.

Robert Latimer took it upon himself to

decide that his daughter would never lead a

full life. Tracy Latimer was never given an

opportunity for success, as her life was

taken. A not guilty verdict would have told

people that parents of disabled children

can perform both voluntary euthanasia on

their children. In the

UnitedStates,euthanasia was voted on for the

first time in the state of Washington.

Although polls before the vote revealed

strong support for it,the ballot was

defeated by fifty-four to forty-six

percent,and euthanasia remains

illegal in Noth America. In addition to

violating civil law,euthanasia also


contradicts the laws of many religions of

the world. It is God who controlls life and

death. Man will take this responsibility

if euthanasia is permitted. It is stated

in the ten commandments,"Do not commit

murder". Murder can take many forms,one of

which is suicide,the taking of one\'s own

life. This is forbidden by the Christian

religion. There is a picture on my grand-

mothers wall which stated that"human life is

not merely the possession of the one who

bears it. It is an inherited gift,as

such,has meaning not only for oneself but

for those who bestowed it,those who have

shared it and those who will follow". This

is an unselfish Christian attitude which

states that life not only belong to the one

who leads it,but also to the friends and

family of the person,





both past,present and future. Therefor,

euthanasia does not serve a purpose within a

society where murder is wrong ,both

legally and religiously.


In addition,active euthanasia,if

legalized will say OK to practicing

involuntary euthanasia. Presently,there is

much research being done concerning the need

for euthanasia and its effects. Over time,

the care and caution exercised in making

dicisions exercised in making decisions as

to who should receive euthanasia may

become sloppy. According to Daniel Callaham,

director of Hastings House,a medicial ethics

center in New York:"The slippery alope

argument against euthanasia has always been

that once you start voluntary euthanasia,

you are likely to gravitate towards





involuntary euthanasia. starts in the hands

of a few very cautious,responsible people,

but when it becomes a mass phenomenon,don\'t

count on the same high standards". In the

Nethalands,where active euthanasia is

allowed,this situation is beginning to

arise. One third of the five thousand

patients who receive lethal amounts of drugs

from their doctors do not give their

concent,five percent only do so out of

unbearable pain and one third because of a

fear of because dependant on others. Patient

will begins to look at thier illness and its

effects on their families in assited

dying,with it being offered most readily to

those least able to pay for medical care".

This must not take place as it will reduce

the lifespans of an increasingly large group

of people in society:the elderly. It will

also fill thier remaining days with worry

over the termination of thier own lives,for

reasons other than lost hope and

unbeleivable pain. Therefor,euthanasia will

lead to the unnecessary termination of many

lives.


Also,euthanasia cotradicts the

point of medicine. Doctors cannot be

expected to heal as well as kill. The

purpose of medicine is to get rid of

suffering and death. Euthanasia is in

contrast to this purpose. Over

time,euthanasia would eventally corrupt the

medical system. It could be used as a

excuse for malpractice. A false diagnosis or

surgical procedure on a patient who had been

suffering or near death for quite some

time,could be covered up by claims that the

patient wished to die in thefirst place.

This would avoid an investigation or a rise

in malpractice insurance for the