When I was six years old, I had a blond terrier, named Dorothy, that had a bad habit of wondering the neighborhood. One day while out on an adventure, she was hit by a car. I heard the screeching tires and ran toward the sound . Poor Dorothy moaned and yelped. Her little body was disfigured and bloody. I felt such pain for the dog, crying a flood of tears. My parents scooped up the little dog and off we went to the animal hospital. Once there, the Veterinarian examined the dog, making an unfavorable prognosis. Unable to repair the damage, the Veterinarian told my parents that it was best to put the dog to sleep, as it was the humane thing to do. Out of compassion for our beloved pet, my parents did as he suggested. Is a living creature better off to die quickly than to suffer for an extended period prior to its eventual death? With this concept in mind, why do we not show our compassion for people suffering from terminal illnesses in the same way? Why are they not privileged to die on their own terms? .
Our judicial system is required to rule on laws that touch on fundamental issues of life and death. Cases involving the right to die are many. The Court is forced to determine whether a State may forbid a terminally ill, mentally competent adult, who is in the process of dying, to end their own life. Death is an end to intolerable suffering, pain and physical disintegration. Within the context of the doctor-patient relationship, a prescription for medication will allow the individual to end all pain. .
No uniform ruling exists on the law books regarding physician assisted suicide for terminally ill patients. Take for instance the case involving Dr. Jack Kevorkian. On April 13, 1999, Dr. Kevorkian, a retired pathologist, was sentenced to two terms of imprisonment for helping a terminally ill man to die. He was convicted of second degree murder for the death of Thomas Youk, a 10 to 25 year sentence.