Q:

What are some of the pros and cons of euthanasia?

A:

Proponents of euthanasia insist that choosing to die is an individual’s right. It halts pain, alleviates burdens and limits suffering. On the other hand, opponents of euthanasia assert that the practice exploits individuals and hampers medical research.

Euthanasia mostly benefits the individual who chooses to die. Terminally ill patients seeking to remedy their pain and discomfort consider euthanasia when their illness greatly hinders their quality of life. In light of mounting health care costs, patients and their families see euthanasia as a way to alleviate financial burdens when cures for what ails the patients do not seem likely. Furthermore, choosing to die incentivizes individuals to plan for death and for their families' futures. Many right-to-die supporters argue that sick patients, once deemed helpless, have a sense of dignity regarding their conditions when they choose to end their lives.

Those who oppose euthanasia assert that it makes individuals and society more vulnerable. According to critics, euthanasia exploits individuals, especially the elderly and the disabled, at a time when they are at their weakest, physically and emotionally. Euthanasia potentially limits innovation through scientific research, since the study of terminally ill patients helps scientists to understand illnesses better. Ill patients that choose to die in the earlier stages of their illnesses do not allow society to improve upon methods of care.

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