Euthanasia is a controversial issue that our society has been debating over for hundreds of years. There are many different view points concerning what is right or wrong when dealing with euthanasia. To be discussed will be the definitions of euthanasia, passive and active euthanasia, living wills, and my opinion of these topics. .
To better understand euthanasia, the definition will be talked about first. Basically euthanasia is when doctors take part in the death of their patients. Many phrases can be used when describing euthanasia. Some of these phrases may sound familiar, such as: "mercy killing", "playing God", or "help with a good death" (Humphry 1). The term mercy killing is usually referred to when dealing with terminally ill patients that are suffering. People see euthanasia in this way as ending pain instead of killing someone. Many religions use the term "playing God" because they see euthanasia as a doctor going out of his boundaries and killing a patient. As you can see the definition of euthanasia depends solely on your opinion of the issue. .
There are two main forms of euthanasia which I will describe next. Passive euthanasia is the "deliberate disconnection of life support equipment, or cessation of any life-sustaining medical procedure, permitting the natural death of the patient" (Humphry 1). This means the doctor is not taking any action or intervening in the death of his patient. .
The other main form of euthanasia is active euthanasia. This is when the doctor takes an active role in the death of his patient. Often this is the case when the patient is in severe pain and there is no cure for the illness. Active euthanasia is usually the more controversial of the two forms. From a religious view, it would be seen as "taking gods prerogatives into your own hands" (Religion 1). This type of euthanasia is also the only illegal one in the United States today.