Writing your euthanasia research paper would be more difficult for you than a simple essay. Nevertheless, if you know the structure and know what to do in each part of your research, nothing is impossible!
So, first of all, after choosing your topic (remember, that we’ve decided to choose euthanasia research paper), you have to search for all available information on the Internet and in libraries.
Secondly, you have to state your thesis. This is very important to make it right, so look for some thesis examples on the web.
Your next step is making an outline. Keep in mind that all the points should correlate to your research paper topic.
Introduction – present your thesis here and explain, in brief, what the main goal of your euthanasia research paper is and why your potential readers should be interested in it.
In your body you have to give all the arguments you have to support your thesis. As it is not an essay, the number of arguments should be much bigger than in your essay on unemployment. Finish your body with the strongest argument you have prepared.
Conclusion – the same as usual: restate the thesis statement and give a short summary of your euthanasia research paper.
Your final task is to organize your notes, make corrections where it is needed and so on. After you do it, type the final draft and your euthanasia research paper is done!
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Legalization of Euthanasia: Advantages and Disadvantages
The intention to deliberately accelerate the death of an incurable patient, even to stop his suffering, has never been unambiguous. The English philosopher Francis Bacon introduced the term euthanasia to denote light painless death, that is, calm and light death, without torment and suffering. Although the very idea of euthanasia originated a long time ago, from the time of Hippocrates to the present day, traditional medical ethics includes a ban: “To please no one will I prescribe a deadly drug, nor give advice which may cause his death.” Euthanasia is called any action aimed at putting an end to the life of a person, in pursuit of his/her will, and an uninterested person must do this.
It is worthy to note that the 39th World Medical Assembly adopted the Declaration on euthanasia, which states the following “Euthanasia, as an act of intentional deprivation of life of the patient at his/her request or the request of his/her relatives, is inadmissible, including the form of passive euthanasia. The doctor is obligated to ease the suffering of the dying by all available and legal methods.”
More and more people think that euthanasia is much more humane in some cases than life (Piccirilli Dorsey, Inc.). Nevertheless, it is necessary to find out whether people have the right to decide if someone needs to die or to live further. This question is of interest to both ordinary people and doctors. What is more, it is unlikely that humanity will come to a single denominator in this matter. That is why there are arguments for and against euthanasia.
To start with, the specific reasons for the legalization of euthanasia are as follows. Euthanasia makes it possible to fully exercise the human right to dispose of their lives, including making decisions on the termination of their own lives. Secondly, a person is recognized as the highest value, and consequently, her/his real well-being, the needs and the right to self-determination, the right to freedom, the right to respect for dignity, the right to dignity must be guaranteed and fully guaranteed (Strinic, Visnja). Thirdly, euthanasia provides the implementation of one of the fundamental principles of law, the principle of humanism. Euthanasia is humane because it stops the suffering and torment of an incurably sick person. The state and society must recognize this right not for everyone, but for the sake of the small group of people who need it (Strinic, Visnja). It is also worth noting the point of view of the European Court of Human Rights, which maintains a neutral position on this issue, recognizing the right of the States Parties to autonomy in settlement of euthanasia (“The Right To Assisted Suicide In The Case Law Of The European Court Of Human Rights.”). Analyzing their decisions about euthanasia, it can be seen that, in most cases, the court did not take into account the material aspect of the cases, but resolved them on the basis of violations of the procedural form.
However, it should be recalled that, in fact, in all civilized countries, a murder of compassion persists in practice regardless of whether it is permitted by law or not. The literature indicates that 40% of all deaths of sick people occur as a result of medical decisions made by the physicians about the cessation of life either by refusing treatment or by drugs that accelerate its onset. Consequently, in countries where euthanasia is prohibited, where there is no legal protection against the misuse of euthanasia, the situation is worse. The legalization of euthanasia must go through some scientific, legislative filters that will establish rules, specific criteria and cases when such a right can be realized. The decriminalization of euthanasia is indicated by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) in the document “Questions and Answers on Euthanasia” of 10.09.2003, will control this process and restrict it to a clear framework of the law. Only controlled procedures and clear rules for the use of euthanasia will end the arbitrary system existing in many European countries (Assistance To Patients At End Of Life).
Jonathan Van Maren cites twenty arguments against euthanasia (“20 Reasons Why Euthanasia Corrupts Everything It Touches, And Must Be Opposed”). First of all, it is believed that suicide with assistance or euthanasia is death with dignity because it occurs quickly. It turns out that those who do not die quickly die without dignity. Secondly, suicide with the help destroys the appointment of medical institutions: to treat patients, save lives and reduce pain. Adding the killing of patients to the list of “medical services” will become an encroachment on the very essence of medicine. Thirdly, suicide for the help makes people who want to use this “service”, second-class citizens (“20 Reasons Why Euthanasia Corrupts Everything It Touches, And Must Be Opposed”). If a person who does not have depression can not claim to be in a position to die. As for a person with depression, the state actually confirms that life with depression is less valuable. Fourthly, euthanasia requires that the state and medical institutions determine whether a person should live. As a result, people with disabilities become second-class people, because their lives are less valuable than people without disabilities. Parents of disabled children in Belgium are advised to expose children to euthanasia. Euthanasia, translated from the Greek as good death is placed in dependence on the eugenics, in Greek, which means good birth (“20 Reasons Why Euthanasia Corrupts Everything It Touches, And Must Be Opposed”). Just as abortion justifies the killing of unborn children with Down syndrome and other abnormalities, euthanasia is used to kill already-born people, but less sophisticated than others. Fifthly, suicide with assistance erases borders. If someone has a mental illness and has the right to use a suicide hotline, which is funded by the government, there is a stumbling block what doctors should do. The question is to deny a man from death or not. Then, it ups in the mind whether such pressure will be a violation of the new rights of citizens in a state where the government permits murder or not. After all, once they decided that the woman had the right to abort, people immediately began to blame those who tried to discourage women from abortion, in violation of their rights. What is more, suicide for assisting makes suicidal people much more vulnerable, since, having legalized the possibility for a person to kill him-/herself, the government has confirmed that these people should not live. Seventhly, suicide for assistance gives rise to a new definition of the term cure, which now affects deadly poison, issued by a physician with a clear intention to kill a person (“20 Reasons Why Euthanasia Corrupts Everything It Touches, And Must Be Opposed”). Eightly, suicide for assistance creates a new, fictitious right, the right to death. It undermines the right to life, which can not be abandoned, even voluntarily. The right to death is a legal absurdity. Providing the state and courts with the right to legalize murder is an extremely dangerous step that has far-reaching consequences. In the Netherlands, many people are victims of forced euthanasia (“20 Reasons Why Euthanasia Corrupts Everything It Touches, And Must Be Opposed”).
Next to the facts, to provide medical professionals with the legal right to kill, even in limited circumstances, are unreasonable and dangerous. Using this right, people can hide medical negligence or ill treatment. Such precedents have already been in European countries, where euthanasia is legalized. The eleventh against proclaims that children can push their parents so that they take advantage of the new service. Such cases were recorded in the United States and Europe. When people live a long time and spend their savings on themselves, it is easy to predict the reaction of a selfish child who sees her/his dying heritage. The twelfth fact explains that those who advocate the legalization of euthanasia ignore the fact that people may be under pressure and use this service for various reasons. For example, the legalization of euthanasia for children in Belgium ignores the fact that children can be subjected to pressure in opposition to their interests (“20 Reasons Why Euthanasia Corrupts Everything It Touches, And Must Be Opposed”). As a thirteenth against, there is a point that there is little discussion about how the final stage of euthanasia should be carried out. So-called precautionary measures have been illusory or ineffective in all jurisdictions where euthanasia is legalized. It is known that many feel great relief if their suicide attempt was unsuccessful, but anyone can not question the victims of euthanasia or regret their decision.
Moreover, suicide for assistance is based on a secular principle. After death, nothing is possible; suicide does not affect anything. It is very arrogant. If, as Christians believe and practically all of Western civilization up until recently), life after death exists, suicide is an act with enormous moral consequences. Also, suicide for assistance as a moral issue has never been discussed, even on the periphery. Those who seek to legalize euthanasia seem to have simply taken the Axiom’s view that suicide for assistance is a right without making any attempt to formulate a clear philosophy to illustrate why this is so. The sixteenth against proclaims that abuse of euthanasia occurs wherever it is legal. For example, judges in the Netherlands have allowed some families to subject their elderly parents with dementia to euthanasia, despite the fact that the parents themselves have never asked for euthanasia and there was no weighty evidence that they wanted to die. The president of the Exit branch in German-speaking Switzerland Saskia Fry said that “opponents of organized suicide believe that older people are not able to make decisions” (“20 Reasons Why Euthanasia Corrupts Everything It Touches, And Must Be Opposed”). Nevertheless, the elderly person reflects and decides independently. What is more, their close people and relatives are trying to resist the choice of a person to commit suicide. It is worthy to note that older people are much better informed, more autonomous and self-confident than before and called for not underestimating the experience and qualifications of those who help to get out of life. Also, in countries, where legalization of euthanasia exists, the prices for this service increase. In Belgium and the Netherlands every year, a huge number of people die as a result of euthanasia.
The eighteenth against implies specialists in ethics insist that forced euthanasia or rather a murder for children should be legalized. In the Netherlands, this has already happened (Jotkowitz, A B). What is more, suicide for help and euthanasia devalue human life. After all, medical institutions are killing a suffering person as if a domestic animal was slaughtering.
The last but not the least is where the suicide with assistance is legalized, activists of euthanasia push this service into all possible spheres. Their words about some kind of precautionary measures and limited circumstances are an outright lie. The ultimate goal is to provide euthanasia upon the request and without any kind of apology.
It can be said that the only minus of euthanasia is its gloomy coloring in society. It always sprawls on religious dogmas, which can not but offend the feelings of unbelievers who are hungry for it day by day. Also, people are gently saying strange and useless analogies to the past with the naturalness of death and anguish, utterances like one must live (Piccirilli Dorsey, Inc.). The public was obsessed with the cult of life as an absolute good and lost any culture of death. Suicide is not savagery. Wildness is when a man of the 21st century dies as the last beast because of someone’s prejudices. This is nothing but a public opinion that still can not support euthanasia with even half of its votes. To sum up everything that was mentioned above, one should admit that the problem of euthanasia requires criminal legal regulation. As the solution to this, the fate of many hopelessly sick people, who in recent years have been in hospitals, whose physical condition is diagnosed as an intermediate one, between life and death, and the mental one, is helplessness, a state of deep despair.
Assistance To Patients At End Of Life. Parliamentary Assembly Assemblée Parlementaire, 2005. Retrieved 29 August 2017, from http://www.dgpalliativmedizin.de/images/stories/pdf/50209%20PA%20Report%20Marty%20(Doc%2010455).pdf.
“Euthanasia Fact Sheet | The World Federation Of Right To Die Societies.” Worldrtd.Net, 2017. Retrieved 29 August, 2017, from http://www.worldrtd.net/euthanasia-fact-sheet.
Jotkowitz, A B. “The Groningen Protocol: Another Perspective.” Journal Of Medical Ethics, vol 32, no. 3, 2006, pp. 157-158. BMJ. Retrieved 29 August 2017.
Strinic, Visnja. “Arguments In Support And Against Euthanasia.” British Journal Of Medicine And Medical Research, vol 9, no. 7, 2015, pp. 1-12. Sciencedomain International. Retrieved 29 August 2017.
The Hippocratic Oath. [New Haven, Conn.], Journal Of The History Of Medicine And Allied Sciences, Inc., 1996,. Retrieved 29 August 2017
“The Right To Assisted Suicide In The Case Law Of The European Court Of Human Rights..” European Center For Law And Justice, 2017. Retrieved 29 August 2017, from https://eclj.org/euthanasia/echr/the-right-to-assisted-suicide-in-the-case-law-of-the-european-court-of-human-rights.
“20 Reasons Why Euthanasia Corrupts Everything It Touches, And Must Be Opposed.” Lifesitenews, 2017. Retrieved 29 August 2017, from https://www.lifesitenews.com/blogs/20-reasons-why-euthanasia-corrupts-everything-it-touches-and-must-be-oppose.
World Medical Association. HANDBOOK OF DECLARATIONS. Ferney-Voltaire, France: The Association, 1992; Document Number 17.P, 1 p.4.
A thesis statement for those who support the concept of euthanasia could be: Euthanasia, also mercy killing, is the practice of ending a life so as to release an individual from an incurable disease or intolerable suffering. Euthanasia is a merciful means to an end of long-term suffering. Euthanasia is a relatively new dilemma for the United States and has gained a bad reputation from negative media hype surrounding assisted suicides. Euthanasia has a purpose and should be evaluated as humanely filling a void created by our sometimes inhumane modern society. In our society, suicide is always traumatic for families and friends. If there is no alternative to relieve the suffering of terminal patients, then the more humane option to suicide is euthanasia.
To those who would oppose euthanasia might consider this as an appropriate antithesis statement: Euthanasia is nothing less than cold-blooded killing. Euthanasia cheapens life, even more so than the very divisive issue of abortion. Euthanasia is morally and ethically wrong and should be banned in the United States. Modern medicine has evolved by leaps and bounds recently and euthanasia resets these medical and technological advances back by years and reduces todayâs medical doctors to administrators of death.
Euthanasia comes from the Greek word âThanatosâ meaning death and the prefix âeuâ meaning easy or good. (Russell, 1977, p. 8) To those who support euthanasia it might be defined as follows: The term euthanasia is used generally to refer to an easy or painless death. Voluntary euthanasia involves a request by the dying patient or that personâs legal representatives. Passive or negative euthanasia involves not doing something to prevent death, that is, allowing someone to die; active or positive euthanasia involves taking deliberate action to cause a death.
Euthanasia is often mistaken or associated with assisted suicide, a distant cousin of euthanasia, in which a person wishes to commit suicide but feels unable to perform the act alone because of a physical disability or lack of knowledge about the most effective means. An individual who assists a suicide victim in accomplishing that goal may or may not be held responsible for the death, depending on local laws. There is a distinct difference between euthanasia and assisted suicide. This paper targets euthanasia; pro and cons, not assisted suicide.
The arguments in favor of euthanasia are many. Without a doubt, modern dying has become fearsome. Doctors now possess the technologies and the skills to forestall natural death almost indefinitely. All too often, the terminally ill suffer needless pain and are kept alive without real hope, as families hold a harrowing deathwatch.
In ancient Greece and Rome it was permissible in some situations to help others die. For example, the Greek writer Plutarch mentioned that in Sparta, infanticide was practiced on children who lacked âhealth and vigorâ. Both Socrates and Plato sanctioned forms of euthanasia in certain cases. Voluntary euthanasia for the elderly was an approved custom in several ancient societies.
Euthanasia has been accepted both legally and morally in various forms in many societies. âThere is no more profoundly personal decision, nor one which is closer to the heart of personal liberty, than the choice which a terminally ill person makes to end his or her sufferingâ U.S. District Judge Barbara Rothstein wrote. (Rothstein, 1994, p. 615). Organizations supporting the legalization of voluntary euthanasia were established in Great Briton in 1935 and in the United States in 1938. They have gained some public support, but so far they have been unable to achieve their goal in either nation. In the last few decades, Western laws against passive and voluntary euthanasia have slowly been eased.
The proeuthanasia, or âright to dieâ, movement has received considerable encouragement by the passage of laws in 40 states by 1990, which allow legally competent individuals to make âliving wills.â These wills empower and instruct doctors to withhold life-support systems if the individuals become terminally ill.
Euthanasia continues to occur in all societies, including those in which it is held to be immoral and illegal. A medically assisted end to a meaningless and worthless âvoidâ of an existence is both accepted and condoned by the medical profession. In a Colorado survey, 60% of physicians stated that they have cared for patients for whom they believe active euthanasia would be justifiable, and 59% expressed a willingness to use lethal drugs in such cases if legal. In a study of 676 San Francisco physicians, 70% believed that patients with an incurable terminal illness should have the option of active euthanasia, and 45% would carry out such a request, if legal (35% were opposed). Nearly 90% of physicians in another study agreed that âsometimes it is appropriate to give pain medication to relieve suffering, even if it may hasten a patientâs death.
On the other hand there are some who could make an argument against euthanasia. With the rise of organized religion, euthanasia became morally and ethically abhorrent. Christianity, Judaism, and Islam all hold human life sacred and condemn euthanasia in any form. The American Medical Association continues to condemn assisted suicide.
Western laws have generally considered the act of helping someone to die a form of homicide subject to legal sanctions. Even a passive withholding of help to prevent death has frequently been severely punished. The Board of Trustees of the American Medical Association recommends that the American Medical Association reject euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide as being incompatible with the nature and purposes of the healing arts. (T1994, p. 81-90)
âWhen does the right to die become an obligation to die?â asks the Rev. Richard McCormick, professor of Christian ethics at Notre Dame University who spoke recently against assisted suicide at Fort Lauderdaleâs Holy Cross Hospital. âImagine an 85 year old grandmotherâ with the option of ordering a suicide dose from a doctor: âDo they want me to ask for it now? Physician assisted suicide saves moneyâ¦.. This is a flight from the challenge of social compassion.â (Rothstein, 1994, p. 22)
The recovery from an illness requires that we fight it. If we know that there is an easy way out, such as euthanasia, then the human consciousness instinctively tries to take that way out. Other problematic situations with euthanasia are that a person with a non-terminal disease may blindly choose euthanasia without a settled desire to die. (Heifetz & Mangel, 1975, p. 21) It is also likely that a person who chooses euthanasia may change his or her mind at the last moment and then it is obviously too late. (Heifetz & Mangel, p. 21
The issue of euthanasia is not a recent one. The Oath of Hippocrates is said to have originated in approximately the fifth century B.C. and, even then, it incorporated a specific pledge against physician assisted suicide when it said, âI will give no deadly medicine to anyone, even if asked for it, nor will I make a suggestion to that effect.â (Levine, 1991, p. 104) However, many pro-euthanasians say that the oath means that they should not give anybody a deadly drug to kill an enemy with, nor should they tell the person what to use to kill. A quote from Carol Levine says, âon the other hand, if the goal of medicine is not simply to prolong life but to reduce pain, then questions arise about the oathâ (Levine, p. 105)
What of the innocent bystanders? The family, friends, or even foes of someone that elects to exercise their âright to dieâ? It is suggested that a person suffering from an incurable or terminal illness is not in complete command of their mental faculties and thereby incapable of such an extraordinary decision. Surely a degraded mental capacity rules out realistic thinking with regard to survivors. How many âinnocent bystandersâ also pay the price of euthanasia?
Euthanasia occurs in all societies, including those in which it is held to be immoral and illegal. Euthanasia occurs under the guise of secrecy in societies that secrecy is mandatory. The first priority for the care of patients facing severe pain as a result of a terminal illness or chronic condition should be the relief of their pain. Relieving the patientâs psychosocial and other suffering is as important as relieving the patientâs pain.
Western laws against passive and voluntary euthanasia have slowly been eased, although serious moral and legal questions still exist. Some opponents of euthanasia have feared that the increasing success that doctors have had in transplanting human organs might lead to abuse of the practice of euthanasia. It is now generally understood, however, that physicians will not violate the rights of the dying donor in order to help preserve the life of the organ recipient. Even though polls indicate most Americans support the rights of sick people to end their pain through self-inflicted death, euthanasia is one of the more contentious aspects of the death with dignity movement.
Today, patients are entitled to opt for passive euthanasia; that is, to make free and informed choices to refuse life support. The controversy over active euthanasia, however, is likely to remain intense because of opposition from religious groups and many members of the medical profession. The medical profession has generally been caught in the middle of the social controversies that rage over euthanasia. Government and religious groups as well as the medical profession itself agree that doctors are not required to use âextraordinary meansâ to prolong the life of the terminally ill.
In the Netherlands, euthanasia can be legally administered under four conditions: a) if the patient is suffering intolerably and there is no hope of recovery, b) if the patient is capable of deciding whether to choose euthanasia or not, c) if the patient repeatedly asks for euthanasia over a repeated period of time, and d) if another doctor that has not treated or previously examined the patient agree that euthanasia should be enforced. (Levine, 1991, p. 110) Robert George has his opinion on the âright to dieâ, He says that 1) people own themselves , 2) owners can dispose of their property as they see fit, 3) people are therefore entitled to kill themselves and even to engage the help of others in doing so. (George & Porth, 1995, p. 50)
Some say that doctor aided death is widespread already, only covertly, and the Netherlands is a model of how to establish the right to die by bringing the practice in the open, where medical and legal systems can oversee it. (O'Keefe, 1995, p. A1) The issue is compared to how abortion was because it was being done anyway. People had access to abortion, it was just being done terribly. Weâre in exactly the same situation today. People do have access to assisted suicide, its just being done so badly. (Shavelson, 1994, p. 39)
Having choices, including having the legal right for help to die is whatâs important in preserving the basic democratic fabric of the United States of America. The issue of euthanasia is, by itâs very nature, a very difficult and private choice. Euthanasia should remain exactly that; a choice; a choice that ought not be legislated or restricted by opposing forces or opinions.
George, R. G. & Porth, W. P. (1995). A Duty to Live?. National Review, 26, 50.
Heifetz, M. H. & Mangel, C. M. (1975). The Right to Die. Toronto: Longman Canada Limited.
Levine, C. L. (1991). Is Physician Assisted Suicide Ethical?. New York: The Duskin Publishing Group.
O'Keefe, M. O. (1995). Doctor Assisted Suicide: Dutch Death. The Oregonian, 1, A1.
Rothstein, B. R. (1994). Assisted Suicide: Helping Terminally Ill. Knight-Ridder Newspapers, 12(10), 615.
Russell, R. R. (1977). Freedom to Die. New York: Human Sciences Press.
Shavelson, L. S. (1994). A Chosen Death; The Dying Confront Assisted Suicide. New York: The Duskin Publishing Group.
Trustees (1994). Report of the Board of Trustees of the American Medical Association. Issues in Law and Medicine, 10, 81-90.
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