Assisted Suicide

by K-Dean

Assisted suicide is the term used to describe an individual helping another person voluntarily end their life. Assisting someone end their life can involve providing the person with drugs, equipment or other factors. Assisted suicide is a controversial topic and has been debated for decades. The practice of assisted suicide is legal, illegal or undecided depending on culture and jurisdiction. In certain religious cultures, particularly the Roman Catholic Church, suicides are considered a sin, so many Catholics are against the practice of assisted suicide.

Assisted suicide is legal in several jurisdictions, including Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Switzerland and three American states, Oregon, Washington and Montana.

You may have heard of Dr. Jacob Kevorkian the right-to-die activist, known worldwide for his actions as the pioneer for physician-assisted suicide. Kevorkian is said to have assisted 130 patients end their lives. During the 1980s, Dr. Kevorkian worked to find unique ways for saving lives as well exploring the right of an individual to make end-of-life decisions. In 1991, he published a book called Medicide: The Goodness Of Planned Death. In 1999 he was convicted for assisting in the death a man with Amyptrophic lateral sclerosis, often referred to as Lou Gehrig’s Disease. He spent eight years and two and a half months in prison and is now free.

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