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Outline For Euthanasia Essay

The Argument over Euthanasia

I. What is euthanasia?

A. ¡§good death¡¨- greek

B. intentional termination of life by another by explicit request of person who dies

C. euthanasia has many meanings due to moral/ethincal/religious terms-mass confusion

II. Different forms of euthanasia

A. passive euthanasia- speeding up death of person by withdrawing some form of life support & letting nature take its course

1. remove life support equipment

2. stopping medical procedures, medications, etc.

3. stopping water & food supply

4. not delivering CPR

5. most common- giving morphine to patient to control pain but causing a sooner death (given to people who are terminally ill or in a vegetative state)

B. active euthanasia- causing death through direct action with response to a request from that person, mercy killing

C. physician assisted suicide- physician supplies info and/or means of committing suicide- example: lethal dose of sleeping pills, carbon monoxide gas

D. involuntary euthanasia- killing of person against their will- form of murder

III. Euthanasia is justified

A. quality of human life is more important than length of life

B. death is a good medical treatment b/c it stops the suffering of the patient

C. euthanasia may become an economic need due to the increase of new diseases, AIDS, and their high costs

D. termination of life of animals- ¡§putting it out if its misery¡¨- but when it comes to humans, we allow long suffering just so they can live

E. an empty life

1. people in vegetative state lead prolonged lives which are meaning less

F. the patient¡¦s best interest

IV. Euthanasia is not justified

A. euthanasia is just another term for murder

B. religion

1. the death of humans should be in the hands of god not ourselves

2. killing is not justified by any means

C. who is to decide when the patient¡¦s mind is unconscious

D. if euthanasia is allowed, people may be under the impression that suicide is a right

E. the risk of incorrect diagnosis may lead to undesired euthanasia

Word Count: 334

2.Voluntary Euthanasia Movement a.The Voluntary Euthanasia Movement marked the beginning of the euthanasia and assisted suicide debate. Medical journals, discussions, and public debates occurred, but made little impact. The efforts to legalize euthanasia have been present since the 1930s. Attempts to get laws passed in various states often failed because of “legislators’ fear of political backlash” (Dombrink & Hillyard, 2001, p. 9). Additionally, the first half of the twentieth century lacked the medical science needed to extend the lives of patients, especially those who were terminally ill. Pneumonia, tuberculosis, and influenza are among the several common causes of death due to the lack of antibiotics which were not yet discovered. Those in comas usually died quickly because of additional illness or the inability to eat and drink. Those with terminal illnesses almost always developed another illness that resulted in their death before their terminal disease could run its course. The lack of medical knowledge along with a lack of awareness from the people of the United States ultimately resulted in no change regarding the euthanasia issue (Dombrink & Hillyard, 2001).