The Blue & Gray Press

The University of Mary Washington Student Newspaper

Euthanasia Devalues Human Life

2 min read


A woman named Terri Schiavo from Florida, who was suffering from brain damage, died in 2005. She was in a persistent vegetative state from 1990 to her death in 2005. Schiavo’s parents were opposed to the removal of treatment, so they had her feeding tube removed.

I understand her husband’s reasoning for having the doctor perform the procedure, but I completely disagree that it was the right decision. No man or woman should be able to decide whether another should continue to live or not. I feel as though it is not the responsibility of one human to decide another’s fate.

There are two main types of euthanasia: active and passive. Active euthanasia is when a doctor or a nurse gives a patient medicine that will kill them, while passive euthanasia occurs when a patient is denied the medicine or treatment that they need in order to stay alive.

The primary reason I feel as though euthanasia should be banned is because the patient cannot express what he or she would want. Although patients put in writing that they give permission for doctors to “pull the plug” prior to the coma-causing event, those decisions are made at times when they probably don’t foresee such a thing happening to them.

Medicine has improved within the past few years, and, as a result, has helped extend the lives of people. Doctors should not take part in killing people. Instead, they should do everything in their power to help their patients live. Euthanasia is a sensitive topic because it deals so intimately with life and death. As a result of this, it makes it extremely hard to properly implement laws to address this issue. Euthanasia devalues human life. A human’s life is very precious and it should not be so easy to take someone’s life without his or her consent.

I am fully aware of the financial burden of maintaining the life of a patient who is terminally ill, but there should never be a price put on anyone’s life.

“We fear eventually some individuals and families will be forced to put financial concerns above the needs of loved ones,” stated the Members of Michigan’s Religious Leaders Forum. It should never be the case that financial concerns take priority over the needs of a sick individual. People do not have the authority to decide the fate of someone else.

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