Against Passive Euthanasia
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All it takes for evil to proliferate is for good people to so nothing. Same as watching as someone loses their life while we have the chance to prolong their lives. It is even worse when doctors, who are bound by oath and law to protect and better the health of people, take part in this form of murder called passive Euthanasia.
The Catholic Church holds it that all life is a gift and that death holds a definite beginning to another life and that no one should die alone and abandoned, let alone being assisted in dying, with or without their consent. (Vatican Informative Service)
The Judaeo Christian religions subscribe to the sanctity of life and put it that no matter what, let nature play its part in the death of a human being. Man has no control of his life as it is just but a gift from God who holds supreme power over it and it is only He who should will its end or not. (Otlowski 213)
Passive Euthanasia is the taking off of medical assistance to hasten the death of a person. The question is what happened to the brother’s keeper concept, where one is supposed to watch over the other? Who determines when one is ready to die and has to be let go? When did man assume Gods role of taker and giver of life that man will let innocents die without raising a hand?
The arguments for passive Euthanasia are that the Doctors are not involved in killing the patient. Right! No one trains doctors to kill: they are trained to do that which they fail to do when they encourage passive Euthanasia, save people. Whatever name you give it Euthanasia will still be the taking of someone’s life while you had knowledge of what you were doing.
WHY EUTHANASIA IS BAD
Once that murder that is clothed and called Passive Euthanasia is allowed to proliferate, then the sanctity of human life will be lost and taking of other peoples lives will just be but a norm that is accepted.
Exactly what the criteria is for choosing who is to be let to die and who is to live is tantamount to choosing the quality of life, determining who should live and who should not, an insight man lacks since creation.
Euthanasia may lead to a situation where the desirability of a person will determine if he has to live or not, as through Euthanasia we will have broken the rule of sanctity of life, regardless the individual.
In passive Euthanasia, the person on whom the decision on whether to let live or to leave to die is usually not consulted and the decision to let that person die usually excludes the person who is being pushed toward the cliff of death.
Ethically speaking, the idea of Euthanasia goes against the basic tenets of life as a right, in that all life is holy and needs be not only protected but propagated too.
Arguments in favor of Euthanasia
There are proponents who argue that passive Euthanasia can be regulated. The argument is that Euthanasia happens and will always be here with us, and the best thing to do is to set meaningful laws that will control it. In fact some countries such as Netherlands already have. Further argument is given the death is a relief and if man overcame the fear of it then it would be possible to embrace Euthanasia.
That in bringing about the death of the patient who is undergoing either physical or psychological suffering is helping them by relieving them the burden of pain. Some arguments have been put forward that suffering patients are the only ones who have that capacity or should be given the will to make decisions on whether to end their lives or not (Johnstone 267).
Refuting the pros
The issues raised above fail to hold any water. For starters there are no clear cut directives as to when passive Euthanasia should begin. Pro lifers and believers can tell you of miracles where people have risen from the dead or come back from seemingly impossible situations while all hope is lost. To perform or promote Euthanasia is to render possible the greatest ill one can perform on another, that of denying them the right of life.
Terminally ill patients, often full of pain might make rushed decisions to terminate life. At times like this, it is not advisable to let them make decisions that touch on whether to or not to terminate their lives as they are not bound to make rational decisions. Most are often delusional or ‘thinking’ with their emotions hence the need to not offer options of Euthanasia.
In what is referred to as the ‘slippery slope’ it is argued that legalizing Euthanasia will lead to be a bad precedent that will result in legislating forms of laws that might lead to the killing of the old, terminally ill or the weak in future (Cundiff Pg 61)
To say that by aiding in passive Euthanasia one is helping the victim evade physical or psychological suffering is a lie. What the person aiding passive Euthanasia is doing is he is helping murder someone.
There is little one can do to request passive Euthanasia. Even in active Euthanasia, the decision is often arrived at from the doctor’s prognosis, and doctors are prone to error. Many times we have heard of a person given little or no time to live and they have gone ahead and lived full lives.
Another issue that crops up is that there has been little honesty from the performers of Euthanasia far as making that final decision arises. In a study conducted in Dutch land, it was found that the majority of Doctors did not consult other doctors or the nurses who were taking care of the patients. Also, the fact that the doctors who participated in the study said most of the requests were oral begs the question authenticity (Keown 104).
Regardless of what arguments may be brought about the right to have Euthanasia, and at that passive Euthanasia, which often happens without the person in question being consulted, to think that one has the right to dictate who should live and who should be let to die is a very bad precedent that can spill into unknown fields of doom. No one knows what human life really is, even the most learned of people, and to be the judge of that which you don’t even fathom is frightening. It is appointing mankind over realms he is not aware of their operations. It is akin to re-opening the Pandora’s box.
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