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section on Life contains the following links:
!!!!! WARNING !!!!!
|The Oxford Modern
English Dictionary describes the word euthansia as "....the bringing about
of a gentle and easy death in the case of incurable and painful disease."
This controversial subject is discussed briefly looking at the area of
euthanasia and assisted suicides. My interest in the subject is rooted
in my work with the terminally ill through Hospice care. This topic is
hotly debated the world over and the outcome of that debate will profoundly
affect family relationships, interaction between doctors and patients,
and concepts of basic ethical behavior.
We need first to distinguish the difference between euthanasia and assisted suicide. If a third party performs the last act that intentionally causes a patientís death, euthanasia has occurred. For example, giving a patient a lethal injection or putting a plastic bag over the person's head to suffocate them would be considered euthanasia.
On the other hand, if the person who dies performs the last act, assisted suicide has taken place. Thus it would be assisted suicide if a person swallows an overdose of drugs that has been provided by a doctor for the purpose of causing death. It would also be assisted suicide if a patient pushes a switch to trigger a fatal injection after the doctor has inserted an intravenous needle into the patientís vein.
The International Task Force on Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide has an excellent page of Questions and Answers on this topic. This is a world-wide issue and one that Satan is using to further his aims of death and destruction. Human Life has great value and is not to be taken by a third hand. Fearing that the ethical standards of medicine might be slipping, the British Medical Association issued a awake-up call in 1997 by making a committment to the centuries-old tradition of the Hippocratic Oath: all medical graduates are again expected to swear adherence to it. Somewhere along the line the oath became passe; currently only half of British medical schools offer any form of oath-taking at graduation.
Our faith as Christians informs and guides us in approaching personal and public decisions about death and dying today. Among the convictions that orient us are:
Advocates of euthanasia, as well as of assisted suicide, have sought to justify the taking of human life on moral grounds by describing it as a truly compassionate act aimed at the relief of human suffering. In light of what the Scriptures say about the kind of care God wills that we provide to those who suffer and are facing death, such claims should be rejected as neither compassionate nor caring. As Christians our aim should always be to care, never to kill.
Pope John Paul II has stated that laws being passed allowing euthanasia and assisted suicides are "...a seed of corruption in society and its foundations. Civil and moral conscience cannot accept this false inevitability, just as it cannot accept the idea that wars or inter-ethnic extermination are inevitable." Referring to "...a world which shows serious symptoms of violence and decadence," the Pope said it was increasingly clear that policies and laws "...opposed to life are leading society to degeneration, not only moral but also demographic and economic." During his address on life issues in 2000 he appealed to scientists, doctors, teachers, families, lawyers, legislators and those working in social services to protect the right to life.
We need to stand back and look at some of the motives for seeking either euthanasia or assisted suicide:
are some of the other areas of Moytura's web site.Choose
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