"It is conceivable, that life can deteriorate to the point where persons
lose their dignity and self-respect and are unable to communicate; life in such
a form no longer meets meets the basic criteria of human-ness." (O'Keefe, A1)
Under these circumstances only should Euthanasia be practiced and then only
passively ("pulling the plug?). ?Dutch Death", Euthanasia, doctor assisted
suicide, whatever you want to call it, it should not be legalized.

People should live their lives for as long as long as it is worth living.
As long as someone can still have experiences and communicate with others, they
should go on living. Someone may have six months to live and decides to end
their life prematurely, saying that they are going to die anyway, why bother
with waiting. It is the same with anyone. Everyone will eventually die, so why
doesn't every one just kill themselves now? It is because there are things they
want to do and see, there is life they still have yet to experience. The same
thing is true for a terminably ill person, they could do alot in that six months.
They write an autobiography or a novel, do a lot of reading or traveling, who
knows? It has been said that trials and pain make us stronger. Even if someone
is in pain, that pain could make them mentally stronger than if they give up and
take the easy way out. Life is pain, everyone goes through pain in their lives,
but most stick it out to the end, not giving up taking the easy way out. As
long as a person still is able to know what is happening around them and can
interact with the world around them it should be illegal for doctors to aid in
their suicide.

"Some say that doctor-aided death is widespread already, only covertly,
and that the Netherlands is a model of how to establish the right to die by
bringing the practice out in the open, where the medical and legal system can
oversee it. (O'Keefe, A1+)" This issue is compared to how abortion was before
it was legalized. "The main reason for legalization of abortion was because it
was being done anyway. People HAD access to abortion, it was just being done
terribly. We're in exactly the same situation today: People do have access to
assisted suicide--it's just being done so badly. (Shavelson, 39)" Just because
something is done does not mean that it should be legal. Many things that are
illegal are done anyway. Look at drugs, underage drinking, drunk driving, and
speeding; these things are all illegal and are frequently practiced. Should
these or other things be legallized just because they are done anyway? This is
not a valid reason for leagalizing anything.

Where would it end if the practice of euthanasia were to be legalized,
how far would it go? Would it end with assisted death for the terminably ill?
The world looks to the Netherlands as the only working model of assisted death,
a nation known for its open aproach to abortion, prostitution and drug use. ?A ?
coffieshop' next to an Amsterdam police station has on its menu hash and
maijuana, one-forth of an ounce for 25 gulden, about $15. A block away a movie
theater is showing the film, ?Brutally Raped,' accompanied by an advertisement
that it is banned in most countries. Hookers stand in store windows of the red
light district. (O'Keefe, A1+)? This country has an open approach to things
that most people frown on and yet many ?right to die? activists look to it as an
example of what to make ourselves into. If we started with the terminably ill,
would we stop there, or would we continue on. Perhaps any physically deformed
people, then anyone with a disease, next any elderly people without much will
left. Maybe the doctors would start going around euthanizing anyone they deemed
fit for death. Then perhaps we would become like a dog or cat and instead of
bothering to heal us we would just be put down. Who knows where it would end.
These examples are pretty radical, but once we take that first step there is no
telling where it will end.

Sometimes change is needed in society, sometimes things must change to
fit societies needs. Some things, however, can never change; it will always be
wrong to steal, it will always be wrong to kill, and it will allways be wrong to
kill someone.

Works Cited

Henry, Sarah
?The Battle Over Assisted Suicide: A Time to Die?
California Lawyer, January, 1996

O'Keefe Mark
?Doctor Assisted Suicide: Dutch Death?
The Oregonian, January 8, 1995. ppA1+

Shavelson lonny