Thursday, 30 July 2009

7 Reasons Why I'm Against Euthanasia

So, euthanasia has come up in the news again. Whilst it is a sensitive issue, and each case will bring up different issues, I would almost always be opposed to any manner of euthanasia, and here's why:

1) I don't think any human has the right to purposefully end the life of another human being.

2) If we allow people to choose to end their lives when they think suitable then we are devaluing life to a mere commodity. Once we start down the lines of "if my quality of life is too low I may as well die" then we're on a slippery slope with a terrifying maw waiting at the bottom.

3) There is always a chance that a person may change their mind after stating/confirming the desire to be "terminated" (a hideous word), potentially after they have lost the ability to communicate. A very scary, if unlikely scenario.

4) People may come under pressure to end their lives if they feel they are a financial burden, or they may be persuaded that it would be the "right thing to do" and actually be killed against their wishes, though with their official consent. There have been cases abroad where very sick patients have been informed by the authorities that funding for their medication is not available - however the government would be willing to pay for their assisted suicide. This is horrible.

5) God can still work in the life of a suffering person. There is still an opportunity for salvation, sanctification and possibly healing for the patient.

6) In most cases there are ways of relieving suffering to a large extent.

7) I don't believe that true compassion can be demonstrated by killing a person, regardless of their circumstances. Compassion could be demonstrated by staying alongside and caring for a dying person.

I am not in any way suggesting that coping with a terminal illness is an easy thing to do, nor that those who are considering euthanasia should be branded as evil people. Nor do I believe that God wants us to suffer or causes suffering. I do think, however, that it is not up to us to decide when our lives should end.

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