Should We Make Children Suffer?

by Robin on February 4, 2014 - 12:10pm

On December 13, 2013 the CBC news released an article published by The Associated Press discussing the idea of child euthanasia. It turns out that in Belgium legislation has been proposed to legalize euthanasia for children under limited circumstances. If the law is to pass, it states that children who are in excruciating pain or children who are suffering from a terminal illness may submit a written document stating that they wish to go through with the euthanasia and that the child acknowledges the consequences. After this process, it is up to the parents to write another document confirming that they accept and acknowledge the child’s request to be euthanized. Furthermore the article say that there will be no age limit set for the request of euthanasia, although a lot of citizens are in agreement with this law the Catholic Church is in strong disagreement.
For those citizens who have agreed with proposed legislation to legalize child euthanasia can view it as individual rights to choose whether or not one should be euthanized. Many citizens believe that it is the child’s individual right to decide whether or not to be euthanized. Additionally to many citizens it may seem like a reasonable solution because it serves the desire to help other. No parents in the right mind wants to see their child suffer through any type of chronicle illness having them legally euthanized would make the parents feel better about themselves because their child did not have to suffer and rather than remembering the child’s pain and agony, the parents will be able to focus on good memories.
In the eyes of the Catholic Church euthanasia is frowned upon because it is takes away from the child’s life because it infringes on the value of equal opportunity. If Belgium is to pass the law on child euthanasia that means a little child who is so young will not get an equal opportunity at life. Rather that child would be convinced that there is no happiness from them and request for a euthanasia. The child does not get to grow or learn like another child instead the child’s life will be taken from him. Furthermore it would bring up many issues that a human life has fundamental moral worth, it would also raise question as to whether or not a young child who is suffering should be able to make sure a difficult decision.
In my opinion I think the idea of euthanasia is outrageous but having seen personally what illness can do to children and all the suffering they have to go through, I think euthanasia would be useful. I do not think a child should be able to decide whether or not to be euthanized however because at such a young age a child is not fully developed enough to make such a tough decision. However in extreme cases where it seems like there is not better option and no hope for the child, doctors should just end the child’s pain. Why should we let children in with chronic illness suffer?
Works Cited
The Association Press. "Child Euthansia Law Passes in Belgium Senate." 13 Decemeber 2013. CBC News. <


I read this article in the metro, and it had caught my attention rather quickly. This is a very difficult topic to pick a side to seeing its a child's life at stake. My mother has a home daycare, so I am surrounded with children daily. See, the issue is that one side side, euthanasia is seen as morally wrong since it goes against the moral principles of "a human life has fundamental moral worth" and "it is always wrong to act in any way that will harm another person". One shouldn't end one's life based on terminal illness, as believed, and instead one should continue fighting and perhaps live longer than expected. My aunt, for instant, had terminal cancer and was expected to die months ago and is still fighting months later. I do understand that these are precious children, but the same principle applies.
Ultimately, with this said, children shouldn't have to be suffering and prolonging the inevitable but if there is no hope, then I would say euthanasia would be deemed as acceptable. It would really matter on what the child's illness is. Do you think that children euthanasia can be applied to adult euthanasia?

I agree with you, if there is no other opinions then I would say euthanasia would be seen as acceptable, but all means I do not think one person deserves to live longer than any other under any circumstances. However I believe if there is no other option and the child is suffering it should be considered an option. I do believe it should be the same circumstances for adult euthanasia; again under the idea that there is no other option for that person to live.

Of course, with the assumption that that child has absolutely no chance to live, as if its a terminal illness, then putting the child down would be okay to prevent more suffering, which would go in favor of the virtue ethics that the parents are making this decision based on what they believe in. So, love and compassion would be a means to allowing euthanasia. However, it would go against the ethics of care, since the parents should protect and harness their child as long as possible (despite the inevitable death). All this to say, it is clear that if we were in their parents shoes, that the decision would be very hard to make...

Your title really caught my attention since children suffering is an important issue that we daily face. I strongly agree with your arguments even if taking away lives of children seems for my part horrible. Since every human being interests should have equal consideration, children should have the right to release their pain just like older people. They should have the right to decide how much suffering to endure and whether to seek help from a doctor before they become incapacitated. Another moral claim that supports this side would be a person should always do that which leads to the greatest amount of overall happiness. So according to this moral claim, a doctor should have the right to help, a person who is suffering and doesn’t want to live anymore with pain, to do so honorably and end his life . As doing so, a doctor will definitively do what the person is wishing for and thus create wellbeing for that person but also for his entourage. In the other side, I can truly understand people against it, but it can be useful for people who really needs it. So it is important to set barriers If a was a mother maybe it will really be hard for me to let go my child but if he or she was always suffering and there are no other options maybe it will be a better option. If there are no other options, why people would like to see a children suffering instead of releasing him or her from this constant pain?