The Flaws in the Legalization of Assisted Suicide for the Terminally Ill Patient in Ryan Anderson’s The Heritage Foundation

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In an article for The Heritage Foundation, Ryan Anderson, Ph.D. discusses the faults in the legalization of assisted suicide for the terminally ill. Anderson sums up his views to four main points. First of all, it physically endangers those that are vulnerable due to their medical state. Along with that there becomes a lack of trust in the patient and doctor’s relationship. Families will also have a weight on their conscious when it comes to the death. Finally, Anderson believes that by legalizing assisted suicide, the care that goes into patients will be compromised due to the knowledge of this option.

Personally I believe allowing a person to make their own choice of the level of suffering they want to endure should be the foundation of human compassion. The choice of assisted suicide is not one that a terminally ill patient would come up with overnight. The consideration of death comes as a result of prolonged pain and suffering. While the argument behind euthanasia, or assisted suicide, is an old one, the accessibility of healthcare is one that is constantly changing and can affect one’s life beyond imagination. People with terminal illnesses must consider the price that is behind them dying but just at a slower rate. A worry that many face, due to the accessibility and lack thereof of healthcare, is how their family will work their way out of the overwhelming amount of debt after their illness has racked up their bills. Someone, terminally ill, in horrible pain and in good conscience would not want to prolong that, and strap their family with hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical bills. While we focus on the choice of living in our society we often forget the choice on the other side of life, while some may see assisted suicide and euthanasia as a lack of respect for the lives we are given there should be a consideration for the decision those choose to make in a time of suffering.

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