The Instigator
dynamicduodebaters
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
inevitable_winner
Con (against)
Winning
3 Points

Legalizing Euthanasia

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Post Voting Period
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after 1 vote the winner is...
inevitable_winner
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/14/2014 Category: Health
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 3,394 times Debate No: 58924
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (14)
Votes (1)

 

dynamicduodebaters

Pro

Hello,

We will be debating "Legalizing Euthanasia."

It is defined as:

"The painless killing of a patient suffering from an incurable and painful disease or in an irreversible coma."

We will be pro, or for Legalizing Euthanasia.

ROUND 1: Acceptance ONLY

ROUND 2: All arguments, NO REBUTTALS!

ROUND 3: Al rebuttals and concluding statements, NO ADDITIONAL POINTS! Also, the rebuttals can only be on content stated in the second round. No rebuttals on rebuttals. Unless you break conduct and state rebuttals in the second round.

Remember, Euthanasia is only for people with a terminal illness or endless suffering. NOT depression. It would have to be approved by professionals first.

Thanks,
DDD
inevitable_winner

Con

I accept your challenge and await your response.
Debate Round No. 1
dynamicduodebaters

Pro

INTRODUCTION.


Thank you for accepting this debate, Inevitable_winner.

ARGUMENTS.


Argument 1: Optional Euthanasia/ The Right to Die


In america, you have the right to smoke, drink, eat, and live the way you want. Doesn’t it make sense that you should be able die by your free will too? You have control over your own body, so why can’t you have control over your life or not?


“"The right of a competent, terminally ill person to avoid excruciating pain and embrace a timely and dignified death bears the sanction of history and is implicit in the concept of ordered liberty. The exercise of this right is as central to personal autonomy and bodily integrity as rights safeguarded by this Court's decisions relating to marriage, family relationships, procreation, contraception, child rearing and the refusal or termination of life-saving medical treatment. In particular, this Court's recent decisions concerning the right to refuse medical treatment and the right to abortion instruct that a mentally competent, terminally ill person has a protected liberty interest in choosing to end intolerable suffering by bringing about his or her own death.

A state's categorical ban on physician assistance to suicide -- as applied to competent, terminally ill patients who wish to avoid unendurable pain and hasten inevitable death -- substantially interferes with this protected liberty interest and cannot be sustained." - {1} {3}


That sums it up, right there! “substantially interferes with this protected liberty interest and cannot be sustained.”


You should be able to choose your life on how you lead it. And end it.


Argument 2: Extreme Pain and discomfort


Take that pain that you had when you broke a leg, had a migraine, twisted an ankle. Some people are forced to live with twice or thrice that amount of pain for there whole lives! They wouldn't be able to do anything without simply crumpling under the pain!


My grandfather had a rare form of Lung Cancer called Mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is caused by breathing in you got it, there is no way to get rid of it. It will kill you, slowly, painfully, you will feel like you are drowning from the inside. The doctor said he had five years, he died in 9 months.


Imagine how much pain he was in, all of the suffering. But the law forced him to suffer, 9 months of utter pain and agony, if only there was a way to stop the pain. There is. By ending the life of those in pain you are doing them a great favor. They are going to die anyways, so why not end it all now? Just put yourself in that situation, live for a few more months in torture or die painlessly?


"At the Hemlock Society we get calls daily from desperate people who are looking for someone like Jack Kevorkian to end their lives which have lost all quality... Americans should enjoy a right guaranteed in the European Declaration of Human Rights -- the right not to be forced to suffer. It should be considered as much of a crime to make someone live who with justification does not wish to continue as it is to take life without consent."- {1} {7}

As the government, do you want your people to suffer? Is that what a good government looks like? No way! A government should help, not harm.

Argument 3: Free Will


Free will is defined as:

“the power of acting without the constraint of necessity or fate; the ability to act at one's own discretion.”


“The U.S. Supreme Court has called free will a “universal and persistent” foundation for our system of law”- {4}


If free will is a foundation of our law, then why is free will for Euthanasia not in it?


“Everyone has the right to decide how they should die.” {6}


Argument 4: The Pet Analogy


“Most people would have their pets put down if they were suffering – this would be regarded as kindness. Why can’t the same kindness be given to humans?” {6}

When you have a sick dog who is slowly dying from a disease, a hip or walking problem, it is common practise to put it out out of it’s misery, and kill it. It is considered king, actually. Then why isn’t the same thing happening to humans? I know this ties into the second point, but I just wanted to share this point of view. If we think doing this to a dog, or cat, is ok, then why can’t we do this to us?


Now, people may say that animals are not humans, but why do people euthanize pets? To put them out of their misery. Us humans suffer from diseases and joint problems and broken backs yet society is happy when a poor dog is put to sleep but when a poor old lady is dying of cancer society refuses to end their pain? I truly do not believe this is fair at all.


Argument 5: Money


I know this sounds very very cruel, but hear me out.


If someone is in an irreversible coma, and you were sure of it, then why keep them alive? They can’t do nothing, and they have no chance of “waking up.”


Life support costs huge amounts of money, and after research the most common figures that popped up where $8,000.00 a day. That is a huge amount of money for someone that has no chance of “waking up” in the first place. If you keep that for a 31-day period, it can cost up to $248, 000. That’s a lot of wasted money on someone who has no hope.


Instead, you should just use Euthanasia, to safely end someone's life. That money could be spent on people who have suffered an illness but have a chance to recover, not wasting it all on a person who just can’t make it.

CONCLUSION.


In conclusion, Euthanasia should be legalized for these 5 main reasons.


I look forward to your arguments,

DDD



References:


{1} http://euthanasia.procon.org...


{2} http://en.wikipedia.org...

{3} ACLU Amoco's Brief in Vac co v. Quill


{4} http://freethoughtblogs.com...


{5} http://en.wikipedia.org...


{6} http://www.rsrevision.com...


{7} Faye Girth, End



inevitable_winner

Con

Contention One: Euthanasia Without Patient"s Permission Is Unethical
Euthanasia can only be applied if it meets one of two conditions: the patient has "an incurable and painful disease" or the patient is "in an irreversible coma." It is impossible to obtain the patient"s permission in the latter scenario since the patient is fully unconscious. Therefore, killing the patient in the latter scenario is unethical because every person is entitled to whether or not they wish to die by unnatural causes (euthanasia being the unnatural cause). A doctor has no right to kill a patient without their direct consent, and if the patient is in a coma, that consent is impossible to obtain; therefore, proceeding with euthanasia is unacceptable. Since killing a patient who is an irreversible coma is half the definition of euthanasia, many people"s dignity will be lost as a result. According to the Remmelink Report, commissioned by the Dutch Ministry of Justice, there were over 3,000 deaths from euthanasia in the Netherlands in 1990. More than 1,000 of these people were in a coma. Thus, it can be easily be said that some of those 1,000 people did not want to die of an unnatural cause, but they had no say in their fate, since euthanasia was applied nevertheless.

Contention Two: Euthanasia Gives Too Much Power To Doctors
Subpoint A: The Power May Be Overwhelming
Patients generally decide to proceed with euthanasia on the basis of information given to them by doctors: information about their diagnosis, prognosis, treatments available and anticipated degree of future suffering. If a doctor confidently suggests a certain course of action it can be very difficult for a patient to resist. However it can be very difficult to be certain in these areas. Diagnoses may be mistaken. Prognoses may be wildly misjudged. New treatments which the doctor is unaware of may have recently been developed or about to be developed. The doctor may not be up-to-date in symptom control. Thus, the patient"s decision to proceed with euthanasia may be distorted since the power given to individual doctors can easily be overwhelming; thus, patients inadvertently may not receive the entire picture.
Subpoint B: The Power Can Be Abused Against The Patient"s Dignity
Doctors are human and are therefore subject to temptation. Sometimes, their own decision-making may be affected, consciously or unconsciously, by their degree of tiredness, the way they feel about the patient, or even the hospital"s financial status. All of these causes can cause a patient to proceed with euthanasia when alternatives are available; patients may not get the full picture from their naturally-biased physicians. Furthermore, from history we can see that legislative euthanasia aggravates these problems. Leo Alexander, a psychiatrist who worked with the Office of the Chief of Counsel for War Crimes at Nuremberg, described the process in the New England Medical Journal in July 1949:
"The beginnings at first were merely a subtle shift in emphasis in the basic attitude of the physicians. It started with the attitude, basic in the euthanasia movement that there is such a thing as a life not worthy to be lived. This attitude in its early stages concerned itself merely with the severely and chronically sick. Gradually the sphere of those to be included in this category was enlarged to encompass the socially unproductive, the ideologically unwanted, the racially unwanted and finally all non- Germans."
This societal attitude can lead to the deaths of many against their dignity in its purest form.

Contention Three: Euthanasia Undermines Medical Research
Medical Research is all about finding treatments and cures for people diagnosed with "incurable and painful diseases." This procedure allows Medicine to develop as a whole. When the focus changes from curing the condition to killing the individual with the condition, this whole process is threatened. If euthanasia is legalized, we can expect advances in ktenology (the science of killing) at the expense of treatment and symptom control. Now, I"m not saying that advances in medical research will completely stop; however, they certainly will face obstructions if euthanasia is legalized.

Sources:

Van der Maas PJ et al (1991) Euthanasia and other medical decisions concerning the end of life. Lancet 338:669- 74

Dutch doctors pushed on to 'slippery slope' over euthanasia. The Independent Wednesday 17 February 1993 p8.
Debate Round No. 2
dynamicduodebaters

Pro

INTRODUCTION


Thank you for your argument. Now, the fun time:


REBUTTAL


“"in an irreversible coma." It is impossible to obtain the patients permission in the latter scenario since the patient is fully unconscious. Therefore, killing the patient in the latter scenario is unethical because every person is entitled to whether or not they wish to die by unnatural causes (euthanasia being the unnatural cause). A doctor has no right to kill a patient without their direct consent, and if the patient is in a coma, that consent is impossible to obtain; therefore, proceeding with euthanasia is unacceptable.”


Actually, the doctor does have the right to proceed! The patient’s family is usually the ones who have to make these decisions if that patient has no ability to make decisions for their own.


Example: I read a scenario in a book where a little girl was in a irreversible coma and her mother had made the decision to take her off life support because to keep her alive but in a coma forever was costing way too much.


“a coma (from the Greek κQ82;μα coma, meaning "deep sleep") is a state of unconsciousness lasting more than six hours, in which a person: cannot be awakened; fails to respond normally to painful stimuli, light, or sound; lacks a normal sleep-wake cycle; and, does not initiate voluntary actions.” {1}


Hear that? “Is in a state of unconsciousness.” Ok so what does that mean?


Well, consciousness means:


“the fact of awareness by the mind of itself and the world.” {2}

That means that unconsciousness means that you are not aware of anything, you can not hear, see, feel, or taste anything. You do not respond to anything. So if you are in this state for your whole life, then what better are you than dead?


“there were over 3,000 deaths from euthanasia in the Netherlands in 1990. More than 1,000 of these people were in a coma. Thus, it can be easily be said that some of those 1,000 people did not want to die of an unnatural cause, but they had no say in their fate, since euthanasia was applied nevertheless.”


Read what I just said in why past rebuttal. See? That example of the Netherlands giving Euthanasia to 1,000 of those people (in coma’s) is what should and did happen. With the consent of family, it is absolutely fine!


Now, you said that doctors may gain too much power from euthanasia, but euthanasia is not up to the doctor, it is up to the patient or patient’s family. You also said that information may be distorted. However, new medicines may fail and/or make the disease worse.


Also, many medicines have horrible side effects that could possibly harm the patient or make them in even worse pain when taken too much, or taken with other drugs.


You see, everyone makes mistakes. So why can’t the medicine be at fault too? Or the taker of the medicine? Or the giver of the medicine? You see, every little person and thing can be doing the wrong thing, not just Euthanasia!


“Medical Research is all about finding treatments and cures for people diagnosed with "incurable and painful diseases."


Do you even see what you just said? “is all about finding treatments and cures” for people with “incurable….diseases.”

You say they are incurable yet they are finding “cures” for incurable things! What?


Conclusion


In conclusion, over the course of this debate, we have :


- Provided 5 thorough points on why Euthanasia should be legalized.


- Refuted parts of every one of your points


- Stated references for every quote or number that we have used


Thank you for debating us,

DDD


Vote Pro!!!!!!!


Oh and remember that you can not refute our rebuttals!






References:


{1} http://en.wikipedia.org...


{2} https://www.google.ca...







inevitable_winner

Con

Before I state my conclusion, I will refute my opponent"s contentions:

My opponent"s first contention states how everyone has the right to die. However, euthanasia is not entirely decided by the person who wants to exercise their right to die; information is often distorted, thus compelling a person to proceed with euthanasia without their pure will. Too much power is placed on doctors since patients and their families proceed with euthanasia strongly based on the information provided by doctors. Therefore, if doctors-consciously or unconsciously-neglect to acquaint patients on possible diagnoses, prognoses, available treatments, etc., then the patients are not getting the full picture. Therefore, patients may choose to proceed with euthanasia, but not out of there pure will since essential information to render their decision could easily be missing. Deciding to kill yourself through euthanasia is an irreversible commitment that should never be made when you are not entirely medically-informed. This problem was especially apparent when Germany legalized the use of euthanasia.
"The beginnings at first were merely a subtle shift in emphasis in the basic attitude of the physicians. It started with the attitude, basic in the euthanasia movement that there is such a thing as a life not worthy to be lived. This attitude in its early stages concerned itself merely with the severely and chronically sick. Gradually the sphere of those to be included in this category was enlarged to encompass the socially unproductive, the ideologically unwanted, the racially unwanted and finally all non- Germans."

My opponent"s second contention fails to acknowledge the fact that many treatments to alleviate pain and suffering exist; receiving euthanasia and dying slowly in unrelieved suffering are not the only two options.
"Meticulous research in Palliative medicine has in recent years shown that virtually all unpleasant symptoms experienced in the process of terminal illness can be either relieved or substantially alleviated by techniques already available." (Dr. Peter Saunders, pHD)
This is apparent in the hospice movement, which has enabled patients" symptoms to be managed either at home or in a caring in-patient facility. Mesothelioma cancer, a disease my opponent mentioned, has numerous palliative treatments, such as surgery, radiation therapy, and medications. And these treatments continue to advance. This is not to deny that there are many patients currently dying in homes and hospitals who are not benefiting from these advances. There are indeed many having suboptimal care. This is usually because facilities do not exist in the immediate area or because local medical practitioners lack the training and skills necessary to manage these patients properly. The solution to this is to make appropriate and effective care and training more widely available, not to give doctors the easy option of euthanasia. In this contention, my opponent also mentions how a good government should not allow its people to suffer. However, the government in this case is prioritizing the development of Palliative Medicine (which develops the medical field) over allowing patients to kill themselves through euthanasia that most probably is not even out of their free will. In the long run, developing the medical field is much better.

Like my opponent"s first contention, my opponent"s third contention can be similarly refuted. Patients who decide to proceed with euthanasia are not entirely acting out of free will, since they may be making this decision out of insufficient medical information. This is a result of placing too much power on doctors who can-consciously or unconsciously-neglect to tell essential information that is needed to decide whether or not a patient would like to kill him/herself. Furthermore, my opponent seems to forget that euthanasia can be applied to patients who are in "an irreversible coma." Applying euthanasia in this scenario certainly does not abide by the definition of free will: "...the ability to act at one"s own discretion." Obtaining the person"s discretion is impossible, and therefore having anyone else (even the patient"s family) decide that person"s fate is entirely unethical since the patient is not killing him/herself out of free will.

In regards to my opponent"s fourth contention, yes, it is legal to euthanize pets in SOME states, but illegal to euthanize humans in every state of the US. However, the fact that euthanizing pets is legal in some states does not justify the euthanasia of humans. As part of the debate, I could easily say euthanizing pets alongside humans should be illegal because of the way in which it threatens the value of life and medical field.

My opponent"s last contention states how a lot of money could be saved as a result of euthanasia. This, however, brings unnecessary suicides. By looking at high medical expenses, patients may be more pressured into killing themselves in order to decrease the burden on their families. If euthanasia was illegal on the other hand, patients would realize death is not an option, and would therefore acceptingly pay the bills and live out the rest of their lives. Consequently, the fact that money can be saved because of euthanasia is a concept that can easily be taken advantage of. In order to evade high medical bills, the families of patients may try to convince patients to consider euthanasia, and the patients, out of guilt, may accept. On the other hand, if euthanasia were illegal, this lack of human dignity would be inexistent and patients guiltlessly could live out their entire lives without an unnatural death. Lastly, my opponent states how the money could be spent on medically assisting those who have a chance to recover. This, however, contradicts evolution as a whole. Diseases and viruses are constantly developing, so once we take care of the diseases that were affecting "those who have a chance to recover," what are we supposed to do with the new diseases and viruses that develop? Simply allow the people who are infected with those diseases to kill themselves? Humans would then come to a standstill in evolution, while viruses would continue to develop. Making these incurable diseases curable through medical research is essential for human evolution to develop as a whole. Now, I"m not saying legalizing euthanasia will completely stop human evolution, but it certainly will obstruct medical research, and therefore make humans more vulnerable to future diseases.

Conclusion:
Based on history, we can see that legalizing euthanasia simply does not work in the long run because of the societal illnesses that inevitably ensue. Germany and Holland, two countries especially regarded for their strong pro-euthanasia policies, ended up devaluing the quality of human life and dignity. Consequently, the countries failed to make as many medical advances as the US and UK, two countries especially regarded for their strong anti-euthanasia policies. Because of this, Germany illegalized euthanasia after the loss of many peoples" dignity and a number of medical advances that could have been made if patients had decided not to kill themselves. While euthanasia is still legal in Holland, many people have rebelled against this policy due to the large number of deaths that have resulted from euthanasia without patient's" explicit consent.

I would like to note that this was a wonderful debate and I had a fun time. Thank you.

Sources:
http://www.dw.de...
http://www.asbestos.com...
Debate Round No. 3
14 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by dynamicduodebaters 2 years ago
dynamicduodebaters
9spaceking, did you take into fact that our second round was at least twice the length and very detailed as inevitable's? This is a serious question...
Posted by dynamicduodebaters 2 years ago
dynamicduodebaters
Fair enough
Posted by DarthKirones 2 years ago
DarthKirones
True, but waiting a day or two can give you time to prepare an argument.
Posted by dynamicduodebaters 2 years ago
dynamicduodebaters
I know that it will take a few hours/days but it doesn't hurt
Posted by DarthKirones 2 years ago
DarthKirones
Give it time.
Posted by dynamicduodebaters 2 years ago
dynamicduodebaters
acceptance would be nice :)
Posted by dynamicduodebaters 2 years ago
dynamicduodebaters
also, they may not die within a year but are in such horrible pain that the rest of there lives they would be very very painful and basically torture
Posted by dynamicduodebaters 2 years ago
dynamicduodebaters
Hmmm. I would go with the year-long rule. Sorry.
Posted by Free_Th1nker 2 years ago
Free_Th1nker
Well I guess my main contention would be that someone who is expected to live for ten years with a terminal illness shouldn't be given access to euthanasia in the chance that new medicine or technology is discovered to reverse the effects of the illness. I understand that current euthanasia laws only allow a person with a terminal illness who is expected to die within the year to receive the euthanasia. So, for me it's situational. If the person has less than a year to live, let them have the euthanasia and die with dignity.
Posted by dynamicduodebaters 2 years ago
dynamicduodebaters
This is less of a scenario debate but more of a concept debate
Just more general
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by 9spaceking 2 years ago
9spaceking
dynamicduodebatersinevitable_winnerTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: at the end, the arguments of free-will and putting people out of their misery simply didn't compare to the possibility of suicidal deaths, the doctor's power, as well as the societal illnesses.