Legalize Euthanasia: Should people have the right to die, or should they not be harmed?
by chelsea-martin on February 3, 2014 - 7:02pm
The article posted on CBB Montreal on June 12, 2013 states that in Quebec’s national assembly, all four parties agree on the bill to allow euthanasia, however doctors are not in favour because they would have to take someone’s life. One of the doctors interviewed, Dr. Marc Beauchamp, states that allowing the bill to pass would be opening a large door in ethics. Other doctors also agree that it would be difficult to euthanize patients; however the bill does not claim that the doctor must put an end to the life of the patient, although they must inform their supervisors of the request of said patient. Another doctor, Dr. Van Gurp, stated that he would no longer want to work in the field if the law passes, and also stated that in his 30 years of practice he has not witnessed a patient’s pain that couldn’t be relieved somehow. Once the pain is relieved the patients no longer want medical aid in dying. Van Gurp explores the idea of introducing high quality palliative care units, with responsible doctors and nurses, instead of euthanasia. In 1993, the federal government passed the law against euthanasia, and voted again three years ago to keep that law in place; however they are now reviewing the legislation that has been proposed.
The main idea pointed out in this article states that euthanasia is a difficult law to pass because there are deep opinions for either side. The doctors hold the value of autonomy and order, meaning that they view the difficulty in ending someone’s life. However, those in favour hold the values of individual freedom and compassion, meaning they believe that if the person is suffering they should have a right to end their own lives. The doctors follow the moral claim that one should never harm another. Taking someone’s life is something difficult to do and it would certainly harm the person. Also, doctors are supposed to save lives and euthanasia would put an end to that idea. As stated in the article, some doctors are so opposed to the idea of harming an individual that they would be more willing to leave the profession. Those in favour, however, view the moral claim as everybody’s interest should have equal consideration. If the person feels that they should not live any more than they should have the option to do so because their opinion isn’t of less worth than any other, even if it puts others in a difficult position.
I feel that euthanasia should be legal, I firmly stand behind the value of individual freedom, and therefore, if a person no longer wishes to live they should have the right to make that decision themselves. I understand that it would be very difficult from the doctor’s point of view, however the person’s choice should truly come first, after all it is their life. I also believe in the moral claim that everyone’s interests should have equal consideration because currently those against euthanasia are omitting the interests of the patients. I believe if a patient’s wish is to no longer live, that should be included in the decision. I strongly feel that patients should have the right to their own choices, if a patient is at the point where they no longer wish to live, they should have the right to no longer live. I truly think it should be the patient’s decision, not the doctors, even though they are in a difficult position they should agree to the patient’s wishes. And to be honest, would it be completely impossible to find at least one doctor who is in favour?
CBC News. “Anti-euthanasia doctors hostile to Quebec’s assisted suicide bill.” CBC News Montreal. 12 June 2013. Web. 1 Feb 2014.