The Giver: Euthanasia and Euphemisim Essay
Euthanasia refers to the practice of s deliberated intervention undertaken to produce the termination of a very sick person’s life in order to relieve them from their suffering. Euthanasia can be categorized in voluntary euthanasia, non-voluntary euthanasia, involuntary euthanasia, active or passive euthanasia. The voluntary euthanasia takes place when a person wants die and says so and asks for the help of somebody or something else to die. Non-voluntary euthanasia refers to when the person can’t make a decision or cannot make their wishes known.
For example, the person is in coma, is too young, is mentally retarded and other similar cases. Involuntary euthanasia happens when a person wants to live but is killed anyways. This is usually murder but not always. For example, let’s say a person is seen in an 8th floor window of a burning building and their clothes are on fire and the fire brigade hasn’t arrived yet. The person starts screaming for help and a passerby has a gun and shoots the screaming person because he/she knows that within seconds the person whose clothes are on fire is going to start to suffer and agonize from the burns until its death.
Active euthanasia occurs when the medical professionals, or another person, deliberately do something that causes the patient to die. Passive euthanasia occurs when the patient dies because the medical professionals either don’t do something necessary to keep the patient alive, or when they stop doing something that is keeping the patient alive (switch off life-support machines, disconnect a feeding tube, among others). In The Giver the concept of euthanasia is present but with other name instead.
What we call euthanasia in our society was known as “release” in Jonas’s society. In the story we can see two of the different types of euthanasia described earlier: voluntary and non-voluntary euthanasia. The voluntary euthanasia was shown when Rosemary, The Giver’s daughter and Receiver in training ask the Committee of Elders to be released because she couldn’t carry on with her training to become the new Giver of their community. The non-voluntary euthanasia took place when Jonas’s father injected one of the new babies from the Nurturing Center with a lethal njection in the middle of his forehead. This aspect of Jonas’s community, the celebration of “release”, played a very important role in the community. It was the method they used to get rid of the members of the community that, according to their rules and their structure, where no longer functional in the community. It is important to point out that nobody other than those in charge of performing the “release” in Jonas’s community knew what this ceremony was really about and what procedures where performed exactly.
In our society, the real world, euthanasia is a topic controversy. There are the ones in favor that say that is somebody is terribly ill and is going to die sooner or later it is fair to let them decide when they want to end their suffering because they their body and, therefore, they have the right to do whatever they want with it. They also say that it’s correct to end someone’s life when they’re in terrible pain and can’t make a decision by themselves.
On the other hand, there are the ones that do not support this idea because they believe that if God was the one that put us here on Earth then he is the only one with the right to take us from here. Euthanasia hasn’t been made legal worldwide yet, but there are some countries and states. Euthanasia raises a number of agonizing moral dilemmas that show the different ideas that people have about the meaning and value of human life. I myself think that euthanasia shouldn’t be allowed because it could get to the point that people use this practice as a cover for murder.
On the other side, if the patient allows the doctor to help him/her die I think it is alright. The Giver Euphemism Euphemism is a substitution for an expression that may offend or suggest something unpleasant to the receiver, using instead an agreeable or less offensive expression, or to make it less troublesome for the speaker. Some euphemisms are intended to amuse, while others are created to mislead. When a phrase is used as a euphemism, it often becomes a metaphor whose literal meaning is dropped.
Euphemisms may be used to hide unpleasant or disturbing ideas, even when the literal term for them is not necessarily offensive. This type of euphemism is used in public relations and politics, where it is sometimes called doublespeak. Sometimes the use of euphemisms is equated to politeness. There are also superstitious euphemisms, based (consciously or subconsciously) on the idea that words have the power to bring bad fortune, and there are religious euphemisms, based on the idea that some words are holy, or that some words are spiritually perilous.
The Giver presents a society where every aspect is carefully manipulated and managed in order to preserve its order and coldly calculated perfection. The citizen’s behavior was manipulated by their rules and they were required to have precision of language which was one of the most important aspects of the society that’s presented in the story. When we analyze this novel we’ll find out that the society here makes use of this aspect of the language to keep its perfection. They use the term “release” to refer to the procedures of murder that they perform.
When we hear the word “release” we think of freedom, looseness, unleashed, unattached. The citizens of Jonas’s community thought something like that we it came to “release” because the procedures performed in this ceremony were kept secret and the only ones that knew about were the ones that performed them. As the citizens were ignorant about the fact that their “released” really meant their death they accepted as something wonderful, as their next step in their lives when they were very old. This is because the society itself made them believe that.
Our society makes use of some euphemism, too. Some of them are to amuse, to hurt, to disrespect, to convey a double message and for death as well. It may be difficult for us, sometimes, to announce the death of a loved-one. This is one of the occasions when we use euphemism as a resource. We may say that he or she “past away”, “has been called home”, “has departed”, has return to the ground”, and such things. These expressions are used sometimes to soften the blow a bit and not make the announcement so bitter.