Assisted Suicide In Ramon Sampedro's The Sea Inside

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Assisted suicide is the administration of a lethal substance with direct or indirect assistance of a physician to voluntarily terminate one’s life (MedicineNet). In the movie, The Sea Inside, Ramon Sampedro actively petitioned the Spanish courts to legally commit assisted suicide after becoming paralyzed from the neck down 28 years ago. While assisted suicide is legal in many places, in the United States only four states, Washington, California, Oregon and Vermont, have passed legislation that allows assisted suicide provided the patient meets certain requirements. Sampedro’s argument for assisted suicide addressed his lack of dignity, freedom and that he was a burden to those who care for him, causing him psychological duress. There is …show more content…
Because of his condition, he worried about what would happen when his brother Jose died, afraid he would have to support the family on a small amount of money. Moreover, Ramon believed he had no freedoms because he had to rely on someone else for everything. When asked about why people with a terminal illness might choose to end their lives, Dr. Timothy Quill stated: “The kind of debility and weakness that accompany it, particularly for people that are used to being in charge of their lives is very, very, very hard. Some of those people want to talk about what options they have to accelerate the process” (Valko). Ramon Sampedro was not truly in charge of any part of his life other than the thoughts in his head due to his injuries. While he smiled, to him it was no different then crying. In spite of what Ramon’s arguments were in regard to why he wanted to die, not everyone can understand or support his …show more content…
In fact, Jose did not even say goodbye to Ramon when he left to go to Rosa’s house. When Father Francisco visited the family, he attempted to guilt them into forcing Ramon to change his mind, not even considering how Ramon felt, making it clear the Catholic Church did not support Ramon’s wishes. Rosa also attempted on several occasions to guilt Ramon into changing his mind by stating that she loved him or that he gave her reason to stay alive. Even if the courts agreed that Sampedro was able to meet the criteria for assisted suicide, it might have been difficult to find a doctor who would not see this as a violation of the Hippocratic Oath. Louis Lasagna wrote in the 1964 version of the Hippocratic Oath: “If it is given me to save a life, all thanks. But it may also be within my power to take a life; this awesome responsibility must be faced with great humbleness and awareness of my own frailty. Above all, I must not play at God” (Guides: Bioethics). Many doctors have stated that they do not believe that physician assisted suicide should be legal at all (Nordqvist, 3). Are they playing

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