Euthanasia: A law meant to be broken? Essay

1234 Words 5 Pages
“Euthanasia: A law meant to be broken?”
“The care of human life and happiness, and not their destruction, is the first and only legitimate object of good government .” (Thomas Jefferson.) Advancements in contemporary medical technologies have served to deny individuals the right to die. However, it may be argued euthanasia has emerged with the purpose of reclaiming that right. The expression ‘euthanasia’ derives from the Greek words, ‘eu’ meaning ‘well’ and ‘thanatos’ translating to ‘death. ’ According to Webster dictionary, the term euthanasia is defined as an ‘act of killing or permitting death on, incurable sick persons in a painless way, for reasons of mercy’ . Illegal in all countries, with the exceptions of Belgium; Luxemburg; and,
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Nonetheless, the typical argument against the practice of euthanasia commonly relates to various religious beliefs.
In retrospect of Christianity, the sixth commandment in the Christian bible states: 'Thou shalt not kill'- implying, euthanasia as an act of violence breaching the Christian faith. In addition to Christianity, a majority of the religious opposition to euthanasia comes from Roman Catholic and Muslim values. The Vatican's 1980 declaration on euthanasia states, 'suffering has a special place in God's saving plan'. In comparison to this, Muslim teachings indicate 'When their time comes they cannot delay it for a single hour, nor can they bring it forward by a single hour' (Qur'an 16.61) . However, some contrasting such religious beliefs may argue, religious viewpoints should not decide human rights especially when involving painful diseases. Euthanasia supporters accept as true, freedom is a legal right and each individual should be granted a humane dignified death free of shame when they want to end their life.
Likewise, Buddhism and the Japanese Samurai culture are all in acceptance of Euthanasia. Buddhists trust the way life ends, will greatly influence the way the next life begins. When a Buddhist dies, their state of mind should be selfless; free of anger; hate or fear . Similarly, Japanese Samurai Culture dictates: ‘if disease is bringing impending death to a human, a third party should then behead him, to produce a…

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