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Assisted suicide is the practice whereby someone influences the other to commit suicide due to terminal illness. Assisting someone to commit suicide can be giving advice on how to do it, providing one with drugs that kill or even just giving the other the confidence to get his/her life away. In most cases the doctor or the physician, may subscribe some drugs or advice on a safer and painless method to commit suicide. The taking away of one's life maybe legal or illegal, according to the culture and religion one comes from. Some churches and cultures believe that assisted suicide is not immoral if it was committed willingly by the help of others. This is advised because some rituals are performed before one dies and he is cleansed meaning he/she has no sins. Although some cultures support this, Roman Catholic Church has always been against any termination of life including abortion (Snyder & Caplan, 2002).
Assisted suicide is considered to be a practice that violates God’s plan for giving life. God is the only one who gives life, and he is the only one with the right of taking life away. Although we should not interfere with someone else’s life, we should not let people die if we have the ability to save the life. For example, when someone find the other bleeding helplessly, one should not leave him die so as not to interfere with God’s plans, one should seek available help so as to help the victim. Life is only given ones in a lifetime and when it is wasted it cannot be granted again. Commonsense is there to guide us in making the right decisions, even though, this is considered to be playing with God or challenging God’s ability to give and to take away life.
Termination of one's life in order to end suffering is a way of interfering with God’s plans of the suffering he puts upon someone. Christians believe that since before Jesus was born people had to live according to God’s wish or else they faced punishments. Nowadays, evils have spread everywhere and at all ages. God may be punishing his people to make them to turn to him once more but instead, people sees this suffering as pain to their lives and prefers taking it away. In the bible, there is a story of a man named Job who experienced sufferings and was later blessed with seven times of what acquired.
God is believed to be the giver and responsible for taking one’s life. It is interfering with God’s plan trying to preserve the life when God is willing to take it. It has happened in most cases that one is expected to die, but the person survives. The person is taken for further medical tests, and he/she is proved to be medically fit. According to Christian faith this is miracle. Maybe God no longer want the person to be dead and instead preach to others of the experience he/she went through.
Violation of medical ethics
Before one becomes a doctor, one must oath not to give out any information or drugs that can kill. The oath forbids the doctor from involving himself/herself in any practice of taking away of life especially the patient’s life. The oath also forbids teaching medical profession in exchange of money. Nowadays this has been forgotten, and medicine is considered to be like any other profession. The oath is not considered to be ritual and doctors are even knowingly selling drugs that can kill. According to the recent survey, doctors have not agreed in this practice although they are involved in the processes of accomplishing the practice. Permitting assisted suicide will be a way of abusing, or disregarding the right of doctors in their profession. Thos should be the decision between the family, the victim and the doctor, as well.
Doctor to patient trust is undermined
The doctors are expected to help in saving lives and not knowingly terminating it even when they are asked to do so by their patients. Some people believe that it is the doctor’s work to ensure the patients is medically satisfied. This includes terminating the patient’s life when it becomes a burden. This destroys the trust between them, because it is painful to watch some to die or involved in the act of killing. This is permitting doctors to become killers. Although it is painful to be aware of one's death, one is supposed to respect the doctor’s decision.
Currently the world is full of evil and people are capable of all sorts of immoral acts. The doctors can be blackmailed or paid to convince the patient that he/she is seriously ill and has few days to live. The patient may also be convinced that the best way to escape the suffering is to commit painless suicide. This will be a way of using doctor to commit deaths of innocent people. This can also prevent student from studying medicine for fear of committing deaths forcedly.
It has been argued that when the practice is permitted, people might end up killing the sick, handicapped, and abnormal individuals or anyone who is seen not fit to be with the other people. This is not a preferred idea, instead; people should care for others’ lives in spite the condition that one has. This may seem to be a form of discrimination to the unfortunate people and the unprivileged persons may think that they deserve to die. This may lead to immorality and people might even end up killing each other.
The young people are emotionally immature, and death will be an option for someone who is angered and confused. The youths especially the teenager thinks the world is smooth for everyone, and if it becomes hard, many will prefer to die rather than to suffer.
Change of mind
Most of the people who seek doctors help for committing suicide are either terminally ill or are stressed with life. Stress is a condition in one’s mind that depresses someone and probably makes one give up in life. One may think of committing suicide and after some thinking have a change in mind and decides to keep the life. When one is already subscribed to drugs that can kill it may be too late to save the life. If this has to be permitted, the people involved must be their will in committing suicide and one must undergo several counseling sessions to have a clear mind of the decision to be made.
It is killing
Killing is taking one’s life knowingly. It does matter how the death was committed or where it was committed, the fact is that there was termination of one's life. Even though, sometimes it may be permissive termination of one's life is still killing. So far as it was against God’s wish, the death is referred to as a killing (Hawkins, 2002). Life is usually considered a blessing, and when it brings suffering and pain instead of happiness many thinks it should be terminated. In the bible, and laws in all the countries in the world, killing is charged as murder even if it is suicide. The law states that one should not be involved in anything that contributes to death.
In most cases, the family of the one intending to commit assisted suicide is never ready to give up on their loved one and instead chooses to help them go through the suffering. The victim might see the suffering his/her family is going through trying to pay hospital bills and their emotional suffering and decides to end this by secretly seeking for assisted suicide. The victim may have the idea of reducing the burden the family and relative has because of her and sacrifices their life for their peace of mind and freedom (Carr, 2010).
Some cultures and religion believes that, there is life after death and that the life after death is full of happiness and contention. This has made people prefer the other life to the normal life on earth. When God created man he considered suffering as part of the lifestyle man will experience. There is time for happiness and time for sadness, time for happiness and time for sorrow. Although life may seem to be unfair sometimes, suicide should not be the best option because it is hard to predict tomorrow. Maybe God is testing one’s faith before he can start showering blesses.
Reduction of suffering
Although termination of one's life is considered a crime, it is also a way of showing kindness and mercy to the ones we love. Unlike the other forms of killings physician assisted suicide, is peaceful termination of one's life. This prevents one from experiencing more pain and suffering. Death itself is painful and instead of waiting for more suffering this would be a better way of avoiding more pain by using drugs to die slowly. Patients sometimes ask for favors that they did not accomplish when they were strong and would like to fulfill them before their death. This will help the patient die peacefully knowing that he/she has completed all that was to be achieved in life. For example, you find one in a car accident, and there is no possibility of surviving should you live the person die or help him die faster in order to relieve him from the suffering? According to people with moral values one will help the victim suffer no more by killing her (Behuniak & Svenson, 2003).
Assisted suicide is also a way of reducing burdens for people taking care of the patient. For example, cancer discovered at a late stage, probably leads to death and since the medical expenses for treatment of cancer is too high, assisted suicide is a better option because even when the remaining days to death are extended, eventually one will end up dying. The assisted suicide will have saved money and resources for other uses instead of spending them to someone who is waiting to die. In most cases, the patients have people who depend on him and their death will bring suffering to other maybe because of money and emotional exhaustion. In order to at least prevent one of them, assisted suicide is necessary to benefit both the infected and the affected.
Physician assisted suicide has advantages and disadvantages according to the people involved. In a recent survey, the highest percentage of people opposed the idea of permitting it arguing that it will slowly kill the moral society we have. However, I think it should be permitted under sets of conditions that protect the right of the rest including the doctors.