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Should Euthanasia or Physician Assisted Suicide Be Legal

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    Should Euthanasia or Physician Assisted Suicide be Legal? One day while interning at the Animal Clinic of Bay Ridge I witnessed something so cruel. This middle-aged shiatsu was dropped off at the animal clinic. Mind you, the owners didn’t even bother to come in the room with the dog. As I played with the dog until he would be “putdown” I wondered why in the world someone would put such a lovely dog down is unimaginable. Despite being sorry for the dog I feel euthanizing both animals and human should be legal with exceptions.

    For instance, if an animal or human is really sick and cannot stand the pain or is in a vegetated state I believe it is okay to euthanize. If the reason is that you don’t have enough money to nurture and take care of the animal or a human I believe it is not okay and it is inhuman to do so. If you cannot care for the animal or a human you should give it away or to a person your trust, euthanizing a human or an animal is not the way to go if you know they can be cared and loved by someone else.

    Michael Manning, MD stated, “The term euthanasia … originally meant only good death, but in modern society it has come to mean a death free of any anxiety or pain often brought about through the use of medication. Most recently, it has come to be known as mercy killing – deliberately putting an end to someone’s life in order to spare the individuals suffering,” in his 1998 book Euthanasia and Physician-Assisted Suicide: Killing or Caring? In addition there are three types of euthanasia Voluntary active euthanasia, non- voluntary euthanasia, and passive euthanasia.

    Voluntary active euthanasia is as Robert Young said “Those instances I euthanasia when a clearly competent person makes a voluntary and enduring request to die. ” (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy- Voluntary Euthanasia. ) Non- voluntary euthanasia is when the person cannot make a decision or cannot make their wishes known. This includes cases where a person is in a coma, is too young (a baby), is senile, is mentally retarded to a severe extent, severely brain damaged or is mentally disturbed in such a way that they should be protected from themselves.

    The BBC website’s columns entitled Coping With Grief- Terminal Illness stated, “Passive euthanasia is an alternative name for the doctor who withholds life sustaining treatment …passive euthanasia occurs when the patient dies because the medical professionals either don’t do something to keep the patients alive ,or when they stop doing something that is keeping the patient alive. For instance switching off life support systems, disconnecting a feeding tube ,not carrying out a life saving operation ,not administering life saving medication. ” The Terri Schiavo case garners national media attention.

    Terri Schiavo had been brain damaged since 1990 when, aged 26, her heart stopped beating temporarily and oxygen was cut off to her brain . In 1998, her husband Michael Schiavo filed a petition to have her feeding tube removed. Seven years of legal battles ensued between Michael Schiavo and Terri’s parents , the schilinders. After a Florida circuit judge ruled that Terri’s feeding tube be removed and the Florida Supreme Court overturned “Terri’s law,” a law intended to reinsert the feeding tube, the United States supreme court refuses for the sixth time to intervene in the case.

    Terri schiavo dies on March 31, 2005 13 days after her feeding tube is removed. Well the debate of euthanasia as you can see is a very controversial topic that has been going on for years. But should this “mercy killing” become legalized? I believe it should. For instance in the case of Terri Schiavo her husband wanted her euthanized but her parents didn’t. Supposedly it was caused by a cardiac arrest from a potassium imbalance associated with bulimia. Despite the fact she was seemingly brain damaged she maintained a heartbeat and blood pressure on her own.

    She can see despite her being vision impaired and she can move her limbs. But she has to have a feeding tube to preserve her life. She was basically left in a vegetative state. Then her husband files for her feeding tube to be removed. He claims his wife stated to him a few months before her incident that she wanted him to never let her live by any “artificial means”. Shouldn’t her wishes be recognized? I believe that if you’re not able to decide on how you want to live and control your own life, why live it? Then there’s another side.

    Her parents did not want her feeding tubes to be removed … they still believed that their daughter was still conscious and she would want to live no matter what. Also growing up in a devout catholic home they believed that “ if it has any life – there’s hope”. Many times assisted suicide is used because a patient has a strong pain that they do not want to live with. That is a big debate among euthanasia case now. Pain management is a huge improvement in this day and age  it can be controlled and eliminated. Such illnesses such as cancer, fibromyalgia and arthritis promote chronic pain.

    Such diseases do not need to be an immediate death sentence. Pain management can help really improve someone’s pain. Also a big problem with euthanasia is it gives a person to have physical control over another human being. It allows family, friends, spouses and doctors a right to take someone’s life. Should people have the right to take another’s life? Continuing with the case of Terri it was said to be suspected that her husband after suing the doctors for apparently not diagnosing her problem in time after winning their rich lawsuit decided that he didn’t want to take care of his wife anymore.

    He was actually suspected to have caused her vegetative state due to neck injuries from around her neck. So another question is does this person who is encouraging euthanasia on their loved one have the persons best interest in heart? And as they questions arise euthanasia is still illegal. In conclusion I believe that euthanasia should be legalized. But as with anything else that the government grants it should be taking under deep consideration. I believe that a person should file a request to administer euthanasia then it should undergo an investigation and if the investigation comes out with all good intentions go for it.

    Even for animals most people don’t look at animals a living things but they are too. If you have an animal and you really can’t take care of it take it to a shelter. Or post up fliers or post on the internet inquiring if anyone wants a pet. But with animals and humans there is always a choice. If you’re pet develops cancer it may be smart for you to euthanize your pet because surgeries are extremely expensive and if you choose not to attain surgery for your pet it will suffer from excruciating pain. Remember there is no pet chemotherapy.

    Also if someone you love is dying and wishes not to become a vegetable for the rest of their lives you can put on their medical records in the case of a bad event to put “don’t resuscitate”. If an animal is sick and should be euthanized to not suffer anymore, they first ask you if you want the ashes back or you would like to keep it, which means when they put them to sleep they send it to the crematory to dispose the remains. It’s pricier if you would like the ashes back. If you would like the ashes back then they have to send them and cremate them separate from all the other so they only get your animals ashes.

    When you decide what is better for you the doctor takes the animal into the back and pre-sedates him/her. They need top do that in order for the animal to be relaxed and so they wont struggle when they get injected. The doctor waits around 1-2 minutes before injecting the medication to make sure the anesthesia worked and is in full effect. When they are positive that it worked they inject euthasol. Then they sore the body and send them to the crematory. Euthasol is a non-sterile solution containing pentobarbital sodium and phenytoin sodium as the active ingredients.

    Rhodamine B, a bluish-red fluorescent dye, is included in the formulation to help distinguish it from parenteral drugs intended for therapeutic use. Although the solution is not sterile, benzyl alcohol, a bacteriostat, is included to retard the growth of microorganisms. Each mL contains: active ingredients: 390 mg pentobarbital sodium (barbituric acid derivative), 50 mg phenytoin sodium; inactive ingredients: 10% ethyl alcohol, 18% propylene glycol, 0. 003688 mg rhodamine B, 2% benzyl alcohol (preservative), water for injection q. s.

    Sodium hydroxide and/or hydrochloric acid may be added to adjust pH. “Euthasol (pentobarbital sodium and phenytoin sodium) contains two active ingredients which are chemically compatible but pharmacologically different. Each ingredient acts in such a manner so as to cause humane, painless, and rapid euthanasia. Euthanasia is due to cerebral death in conjunction with respiratory arrest and circulatory collapse. Cerebral death occurs prior to the cessation of cardiac activity. When administered intravenously, pentobarbital sodium produces rapid anesthetic action.

    There is a smooth and rapid onset of unconsciousness. At the lethal dose, there is depression of vital medullary respiratory and vasomotor centers. When administered intravenously, phenytoin sodium produces toxic signs of cardiovascular collapse and/or central nervous system depression. Hypotension occurs when the drug is administered rapidly. ” (Drugs. com- Euthasol Euthanasia Solution)  But in any situation remember these questions before you consider a big situation regarding the life of a person and animal.

    Also think about whether you can live with the guilt of deciding a person’s fate, if your religious does it contradict your religious perspective and always ask for other alternatives. With whatever decision you choose make sure that it is best for the person. One Chinese proverb says, “Laws control the lesser man. Right conduct controls the greater one. ” Works Cited “Coping with Grief – Terminal Illness. ” BBC News. BBC, n. d. Web. 27 Sept. 2012. <http://www. bbc. co. uk/health/support/terminalillness_index. shtml>. “Euthasol Euthanasia Solution. ” Veterinary Information from Drugs. om. N. p. , n. d. Web. 10 Oct. 2012. <http://www. drugs. com/vet/euthasol-euthanasia-solution. html>. Manning, Michael, M. D. “Euthanasia, Assisted Suicide, and Physician-assisted Suicide. ” Euthanasia, Assisted Suicide, and Physician-assisted Suicide. N. p. , n. d. Web. 27 Sept. 2012. <http://home. earthlink. net/~simcic/>. Young, Robert. “Voluntary Euthanasia. ” (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy/Spring 1999 Edition). N. p. , n. d. Web. 10 Oct. 2012. <http://stanford. library. usyd. edu. au/archives/spr1999/entries/euthanasia-voluntary/>.

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