Euthanasia: Is it morally acceptable to choose death?.
Euthanasia is a buzz word and certainly evokes moral and ethical thoughtfulness from most people. However euthanasia itself is a big word. Taking the word into certain contexts brings the meaning home and makes it much more clear. At that point people are more comfortable expressing moral judgment on the euthanasia issue. From the big picture, however, euthanasia is morally wrong and not ethically sound. .
Dr. Jack Kevorkian brought euthanasia into living rooms across the United States as he assisted his patience with suicide and earned the name Dr. Death. Gloria Borger authored an article in the September 3, 1990 issue of U.S. News and World Report entitled "The Odd Odyssey of Dr. Death." This article posed the question is Dr. Kevorkian a "murder or humanitarian" just trying to help people? For Dr. Kevorkian euthanasia has been a living trip through the legal system. The Journal of Palliative Care, in a 1993 article by Dr. Ira R. Byock (an M.D.), provided the view from Hospice beginning with the title "Consciously Walking the Fine Line: Thoughts on a Hospice Response to Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia." One key is raising the consciousness of the people of the United States to the reality of preparing for death. Death, like life, is a gift and an opportunity. It is the community that values life and death and makes everyone feel welcome. Hospice is the welcoming committee for death. Terminally ill people and their families are not alone in preparing for death but it is preparing for death, not suicide or murder. Hospice does not advocate euthanasia and assisted suicide.
Setting the stage with these two ends of care, the medical profession is, it seems, in a quandary. Health care professionals are part of our system in the United States. Amazingly Raphael Cohen-Almagor presents pro-euthanasia conclusions in his book The Right to Die with Dignity: an Argument in Ethics, Medicine, and Law.