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Dr. Kevorkian and the Benefits of Euthanasia

Everybody at one time or another will inevitably have death knocking at the door. And no it will not be Brad Pitt. Coping with death is a very difficult concept to deal with. Dying comes in one of three ways: homicide, suicide and natural causes. There is no debate with regards to homicide, a person takes the life of another person. Suicide is the taking of one’s own life, similarly a paper cannot be written for or against it. Last but not least is death by natural causes. I would not want to write a paper on why a one hundred-fifty year old person passes away; could it have been that the person was really really old? Euthanasia consequently does not fall into one of the three causes of death, we consider it between homicide and suicide. Here is where the fireworks really start showing colors. True we could debate various subjects such as gun control, legalization of marijuana, three strikes and so on and so forth. On the other hand euthanasia deals with death totally, once it’s done there is no reversal of previous court cases. It is permanent and oops is not mentioned in a sarcastic way.

Let’s mention a known name in the euthanasia field, Dr. Jack Kevorkian. If this name sounds unfamiliar, then you have been one of the lucky few people to have been living in a cave for the last nine years. Dr. Kevorkian is considered to some as a patriarch, here to serve mankind. Yet others consider him to be an evil villain, a devil’s advocate so to speak. Physician assisted suicide has not mentioned in the news recently. But just as you are reading this paper and I’m typing, it’s happening. This hyperlink will take you to a web page that depicts in depth how many people Dr. Kevorkian has assisted in taking their lives.

Euthanasia comes from the Greek root-eu, meaning good, and thanatos meaning death. Together they signify “good death.” For example, you have a terminal illness and doctors informed you that your life span would not exceed four weeks starting from today, and during this waiting period, you will suffer excruciating pain and unbearable agony. What would you do? You decide to take action. What should it be? An injection, a pill, or jumping off a building? Applying the concept of euthanasia, it means you will either choose an injection or a pill.

Euthanasia Essay: Assisted Suicide and Dr. Kevorkian

Dr. Jack Kevorkian was sentenced fifteen to twenty

years in jail for a second degree murder charge. There is no doubt

that Dr. Kevorkian injected lethal drugs into Thomas Youk, killing him

within minutes. But was the murder committed as an act of rage? No,

it was done as an act of kindness.

For the past ten years, Dr. Kevorkian has been performing assisted

suicides. In that time, Kevorkian claims to have eased the suffering

of 130 patients. He has also been fighting to legalize euthanasia.

There are some people that support Kevorkian’s views of euthanasia,

yet there are still many people that think that what Kevorkian is

doing is wrong. Until the later part of April, when he was convicted

of second degree murder, Kevorkian had been found not guilty of

assisted suicide charges on four separate accounts. Is Jack

Kevorkian’s actions one of a hero or of a madman?

Currently, the only state that assisted suicide is legal is Oregon.

Euthanasia is illegal everywhere in the United States. Euthanasia is

a better option than assisted suicide. Euthanasia differs from

assisted suicide in that the physician actually injects the lethal

drug instead of prescribing it. Because patients are required to take

the lethal drug themselves, there is the chance that they may take the

drug the wrong way. This could cause the patient to survive the

lethal dose and do more harm. There is a twenty-five percent chance

that a patient will fail to kill themselves by assisted suicide (Smith


Dr. Kevorkian, the most outspoken euthanasia activist in the United


… middle of paper …


argument is wrong.

Works Cited

Corry, John. “Who is Jack Kevorkian, Really?” Reader’s Digest. April 1999: 87-92.

Goldstein, Frederick J. “Dr. Jack Kevorkian: Friend or Foe?” The Journal of Clinical Pharmacology. January 1997: 1-3.

Grace, Julie. “Curtains for Dr. Death.” Time 5 Apr. 1999: 48.

Lessenberry, Jack. “Death Becomes Him.” Vanity Fair July 1994: 102-113.

McHugh, Paul R. “The Kevorkian Epidemic.” The American Scholar. Vol. 66. 1997: 15-27.

Nelan, Bruce W. “Fasting for the Right to Die.” Time 15 Nov. 1993: 89.

Shapiro, Joseph P. “Dr. Death Has Yet Another Day in Court.” U.S. News and World Report 29 Mar. 1999: 37.

Shapiro, Joseph P. “Dr. Death’s Last Dance.” U.S. News and World Report. 26 Apr. 1999: 44.

Smith, Wesley J. “Death Wars.” National Review 14 Jul. 1997: 36-37.

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