Several diseases have arisen and survived throughout human history, and people have had difficulty developing effective cures or therapies against them. Individuals have tried their hand at traditional and cutting-edge scientific methodologies in searching for a solution. Because, in the end, we want to make sure that people live as long as possible, all of our efforts have been concentrated on making that happen. However, there are times when the suffering that comes with living is so intense that the person experiencing it or people who care about them could consider euthanasia as a means of escape (Kumar et al. 91-96). Assisting another person in taking their own lives in the belief that doing so would relieve them of their pain is known as “euthanasia.” People with a terminal illness and in excruciating agony are often candidates for euthanasia. Therefore, it refers to the practice in which a medical practitioner actively supports a patient who is terminally sick in committing suicide. Many people have different opinions on whether or not it is moral to legalize euthanasia. Even though some people will not agree with me, it is my solid conviction that euthanasia should be legalized in the United States of America. People should be free to choose how they want their lives to end, and euthanasia should be permitted on a global scale if we are to take into account several ethical and practical issues that support this position. People who decide to end their lives can avoid additional suffering and pain, exercise their right to their lives, prevent additional costs, save others (their loved ones) from suffering, respect their autonomy, and become free from certain legalities.
Patients suffering unbearably while battling for their lives may benefit significantly from euthanasia. Many people who support euthanasia argue that, in some cases, dying is better than living. It is indisputable that the patient’s final days are a living nightmare due to the pain and suffering that often accompany terminal conditions. At that point, suicide may seem the most humanitarian way to end their suffering (Baksheev et al. 1360-1363). The patient’s suffering may have been exacerbated by the fact that he or she had a terminal illness from which there is almost little hope of recovery. If there is no chance of recovery, it is cruel to subject the sufferer to more suffering. It is morally correct to act following the principle of beneficence and reduce a dying person’s pain and discomfort. Unfortunately, terminally sick patients may experience more than just suffering; occasionally, they may be placed in an even more terrible situation. Consequences may include generalized fatigue, loss of appetite, and an increased sense of helplessness. The only thing the patient cares about now is ending their life, and they have given up on living with any sense of pride or honor. This highlights the potential weight of the patient’s wish for a peaceful passing.
Euthanasia also demonstrates compassion for the patients and stops the emotional and physical anguish that others would otherwise endure, such as the patient’s loved ones and those near them. The emotional misery that often comes hand in hand with some disorders may be just as painful as the physical pain they cause. A prime example of this would be the HIV/AIDS pandemic. As it worsens, those affected by this ailment are put through unimaginable suffering. The resilience of their bodies progressively decreases, they begin to weaken, and in the end, they shrivel up and die. In addition to the obvious physical suffering, they are also going through a great deal of mental anguish because they are aware that even with the highest quality of medical care, their symptoms will only be marginally improved for a short period. That death is ultimately unavoidable (Kumar et al. 91-96). Suppose terminally ill patients are legally allowed to seek euthanasia to speed up the dying process. Do the patients’ loved ones not have a moral obligation to end the patients’ mental and physical suffering? Since those in charge of providing euthanasia are aware that the patient is in pain and that death is close at hand, it is a kind gesture for the patient to let death come sooner than anticipated. In this context, euthanasia is seen as a compassionate solution to the problem of intolerable suffering.
Additionally, euthanasia is ethically commendable since it gives individuals the option to terminate their lives most satisfyingly. The United States of America Constitution allows individuals to seek personal happiness. In this discussion, “freedom of choice” means that every individual has the right to decide whether or not to continue living, even if they are terminally ill (Baksheev et al. 1360-1363). Those dealing with terminal conditions should not be denied the choice to end their lives early because of opposition to legalizing euthanasia. For whatever reason, death does not arrive as swiftly as they would want, so they have no option but to take their own lives. When governments forbid terminally ill persons from committing suicide, they are violating the constitutional right of such individuals to terminate their own life free from pain and suffering. For instance, in Texas, it is against the law to actively hasten or hasten the death of a person, whether by euthanasia, mercy killing, or other means of hastening death. The Declaration of Independence, the country’s founding document, also guarantees every citizen the right to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” There is a direct correlation between this liberty and the last act of one’s life. Refusing terminally ill persons the choice of committing suicide would violate their right to life. Those in the latter stages of a fatal illness and so much anguish that they cannot bear to continue living should be offered the option to terminate their lives prematurely. As a result, people should not be prevented by too restrictive rules from ending their lives on their terms if they choose. For instance, euthanasia may be practiced lawfully in Oregon, New Jersey, Hawaii, Washington, Colorado, Washington, Maine, the District of Columbia, California, and Vermont. In these states, patients who are candidates for voluntary euthanasia decide on their own whether or not to end their lives. A guardian will decide if the person in question cannot provide informed permission.
Moreover, euthanasia should be legalized since it demonstrates respect for people’s liberties. The act of dying when and in the manner one chooses is a highly personal and private concern. Patients who have fatal conditions, such as acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), multiple sclerosis (M.S.), or Alzheimer’s disease (A.D.), are aware of their impending mortality and want control over the process of dying. They cannot bear the idea of surrendering control and being forced to depend on the assistance of others. Second, people who are nearing the end of their life and are terminally ill do not want to spend their money on the ever-increasing expenses of medical care; instead, they would want to die away as soon as possible so that their heirs may reap the full financial benefits of their inheritance. These justifications have a significant weight because the patients are in perpetual, immense pain and have accepted the reality that there is no possibility of treatment and that death is imminent. Furthermore, the patients have acknowledged that there is no chance of a cure and that death is imminent.
Another advantage of euthanasia is that it offers the emotional solace that loved ones need when they are forced to watch a loved one suffer while they get medical treatment. However, no one wants to see a loved one endure unnecessary pain in a hospital, which may sometimes occur. Given all this, it is not hard to see why so many individuals think euthanasia should be legalized. If a person’s loved ones are made to watch while someone they care about is in pain, it may give them a great deal of emotional suffering, which can spread to every part of their existence (Arsić 28-34). Hospital bills for patients with life-limiting conditions might consume significant cash. Most individuals with terminal illnesses spend the last days of their lives connected to various life support systems, leaving behind a significant medical bill for their loved ones. Euthanasia may save a patient’s family $10,000 in medical expenses even if a patient passes away while in excruciating pain; it is not unheard of for the total cost of their hospital stay to slowly escalate during their time there. Due to their poor financial conditions, some families may have little choice but to take out loans to pay for medical treatment for a family member. It would help lessen the emotional toll of caring for a sick loved one and save families a ton of money on medical treatment if euthanasia were widely acknowledged and used in hospitals (Arsić 28-34).
Also, euthanasia legalization raises the concern of individual liberty versus state interests. The State undoubtedly cares deeply about protecting the lives of its people. Such curiosity is natural and indicative of a well-run state since it is motivated by citizens’ faith in their government. Therefore, it is seen as evidence of a government properly doing the job it was elected to do when the government takes precautionary steps to safeguard its citizens, such as arresting thieves and mobsters, interning drug traffickers and human smugglers, punishing wife batterers and rapists or sentencing mass murderers to imprisonment or the death penalty. When it becomes a personal decision, however, unlike the various forms of public safeguards, the level of interest from the State is not commensurate with the level of interest from terminally ill people who choose to end their lives through death. If the State reinforces this skewed “against the State” level of interest by prohibiting it, it will be perceived as an intrusion on individual freedom. Perhaps the most significant U.S. president, Abraham Lincoln, defined democracy as government “by the people, of the people, and for the people.” So, it stands to reason that the people’s will takes precedence in the United States, a strong democracy. It follows, therefore, that in the debate over whether or not to legalize euthanasia, the people’s will should be accorded the highest priority. The majority of people believe euthanasia should be made legal.
It has been suggested that euthanasia is ethically permissible if it is carried out following the desires of a patient suffering from a terminal illness. On the other hand, it would be unethical for physicians to refuse a terminally ill patient’s request for euthanasia just because the law prohibits them from doing so (Dintcho). The practice of euthanasia ought to be legalized everywhere in the United States and the rest of the world so that those suffering from life-threatening conditions may terminate their lives with the honor and peace they have earned. Many physicians and other medical professionals would not give it a second thought to assist terminally ill patients in ending their lives with dignity if they were permitted to do so under the law. In addition, they would not hide the fact that they had done it in any way and would be very forthright about it.
In conclusion, euthanasia should be seen as a means to offer individuals more control over their deaths, reduce the amount of suffering that people experience, and reduce the amount of money people spend on medical care. People on life support or with a fatal condition that causes them chronic agony can contemplate euthanasia. This may make their suffering more manageable. It is true that if you are paralyzed and unable to care for yourself, spending the rest of your life in a hospital bed is not exactly what you would call having a high quality of life (Baksheev et al. 1360-1363). However, if you can communicate with other people, there is a possibility that you could have a better quality of life. It is nonsensical to say that legalizing euthanasia offers enormous moral and ethical issues, especially because of its message about the value of human life. Freedom in its purest form exists only when an individual is unfettered in their ability to choose whether their own life is worth living. The decision ultimately rests with the patient and the patient alone. If a person cannot make decisions for themselves—for example, if they are in a coma—their loved ones are the only ones authorized to do so. In addition, if euthanasia is legalized, physicians who have received patients’ informed permission might stop carrying out the practice secretly (Dintcho). A change in the law regarding euthanasia does not always lead to its widespread acceptance. It is about giving people the credit they deserve when they use their freedom. Because euthanasia is a morally acceptable practice, it should be legalized globally, not only in the United States. However, legislation should establish acceptance criteria for each occurrence, eliminating arbitrary judgments that lead to the untimely deaths of people and adding stress to the lives of those who are already under enormous pressure.
Dintcho, Arisa D. “Should Active Euthanasia Be Morally and Legally Permissible?” Sound Decisions: An Undergraduate Bioethics Journal 5.1 2020: 1.
Arsić, Miloš. “Euthanasia and moral dilemmas.” Medicinski časopis 56.1 (2022): 28-34.
Kumar, Ajay, Aseem Mehra, and Ajit Avasthi. “Euthanasia: A Debate—For and Against.” Journal of Postgraduate Medicine, Education and Research 55.2 2021: 91–96.
Baksheev, Andrey Ivanovich, et al. “Euthanasia in modern society: the topicality, practicability, and medical aspect of the problem.” Journal of pharmaceutical sciences and research 10.6 (2018): 1360–1363.