Euthanasia, which is also known as assisted suicide, is the painless
inducement of death? (Weir 281). ?The term ?euthanasia? is derived from the
Ancient Greek, and means ?good Death? (Torr 12). ?Euthanasia is a broad term
for mercy killing-taking a life of a hopelessly ill or injured individual in
order to end his or her suffering? (12). Euthanasia is done one of two ways.
It is either done actively or passively. Passive euthanasia is when someone
disconnects a respirator or removes a feeding tube from someone who is solely
dependant upon it (Bender 13). Active euthanasia is giving a patient an
overdose of pills or perhaps a deathly injection of a substance (13). While
passive euthanasia has become acceptable, active euthanasia is very
controversial issue. Euthanasia is not a new idea to our culture. ?In
ancient Greece, the government gave hemlock to those who wanted it (13).
Though, individuals? opposing the idea of euthanasia is not anything new. In
1868, over half of the thirty-seven states prohibited the act of euthanasia
(13). In the United States Oregon is the only state where euthanasia has been
legalized. Those who have been told that euthanasia means dying peacefully
have actually been fed a lie.
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