Arguments against euthanasia by huangyuarong


									Arguments against euthanasia? No, I do not have any. But I do have several reasons I am in favor of euthanasia.
But I'll play devil's advocate here and see where it leads me.

1) To kill is to go against God's word. It is murder and that would be in violation of Commandment number six. Right?

2) To assist someone in the act of committing suicide is wrong, as well. According to 1 Corinthians, 6:19-20 (KJV)
"What? Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are
not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's."
This has implications that we belong to God. He chose for us to live so that we may have eternal life with Him.
3) Pain and suffering are part of being human. It is what makes us strong.
4) God has a plan for us.
5) Genesis 9: 6 "Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed; for in the image of God has God
made man."

There are my devil's advocate reasons. And I actually do value them.

Here are my reasons for not playing devil's advocate.

1) Yes, God has a plan for us. I get that, but I do fully believe that He forgives us for our sins.
2) Sometimes, pain and suffering are so debilitating and crippling as to stagnate us in our lives and to create mental
blocks in our "morally right choices". It's all we can do to simply make the pain stop. To cease the suffering.
3) As God has plans for each of us, and as individuals, not as a whole, then who is to say that His plan was carried out
as He intended. Remember we are not to question why when we cannot understand as we are not divine.
4) Maybe He wanted us to have this debate.
5) We all have a "right to life"

There are so many organizations representing both sides. If you want to make an informed decision as to where your
opinion really lies, then research both. Go to or and weigh both sides
carefully. Although this is by far an emotional decision for the indivual, think of the Terri Schiavo's of the world- unable to
give voice to their emotions or to even be cognizant of what they might be. In this debate, know your facts.

Why Euthanasia is Wrong — From a Secular Viewpoint.

    "You are a member of the first generation of doctors in the history of medicine to turn their backs on the oath of Hippocrates
and kill millions of old useless people, unborn children, born malformed children, for the good of mankind — and to do so without a
single murmur from the august New England Journal of Medicine. And do you know what you're going to end up doing? You, a
graduate of Harvard and a reader of the New York Times and a member of the Ford Foundation's Program for the Third World? Do
you know what is going to happen to you?
    "You're going to end up killing Jews."
— Walker Percy, The Thanatos Syndrome.[212]

     The Ultimate Questions. It is one thing to speak of the sanctity of life and of human life being created in the image and
likeness of God — but what does the anti-euthanasia activist say when he is confronted by a pro-euthanasia person who does not
believe in God — or who believes in a permissive, feel-good bogus "god" who allows anything the person wants?
     Anti-euthanasia activists must be able to speak in terms of the negative consequences that assisted suicide and euthanasia have
on society at large (i.e., personal insecurity, escalating violence and fraud), and they must be able to explain these ideas in very
specific and relevant terms.
     When people speak of the philosophical aspects of euthanasia, they will inevitably return again and again to the central focus of
the issue. They will invariably be forced to consider the two ultimate questions regarding euthanasia.
     These are;

     1.    Why is euthanasia right (or wrong)?, and
     2.    Should we not be able to determine the ultimate disposition of our own bodies?

    The remainder of this section discusses the reasons that the act of euthanasia is illogical and wrong from a purely secular
viewpoint, as listed below.
            Why Euthanasia is Wrong — Dead Wrong

 (1)   Euthanasia is irreversible;
 (2)   Euthanasia sets a bad example;
 (3)   Euthanasia is myopic and lazy;
 (4)   Euthanasia is despair personified; and
 (5)   Euthanasia is entropic.

     Reason #1: Euthanasia is Forever. It is a curious fact that most pro-euthanasia activists are opposed to capital punishment,
primarily because mistakes can be made when administering the death penalty. In other words, once a person has been executed, not
even the most conclusive proof of his innocence can bring him back to life.
     Precisely the same reasoning may be used to oppose euthanasia. There are literally scores of medical cases on record where
people have been judged to be "irreversibly comatose," and then have awakened to lead perfectly normal lives. In fact, it is safe to
say that there are many more people who have awakened from 'irreversible' comas than there are innocent people who have been
executed in this country.
     The "Right to Die" is not a right — it is the taking away of all possible rights.
     Dead men don't choose.
     A few cases where euthanasia was considered but rendered moot when the patient in question recovered are outlined below.

• Teisa Franklin. This little 21-month old girl ingested a huge quantity of anti-depressant drugs on February 4, 1988, and lapsed
into a deep coma. After a rather cursory examination, doctors at Mercy Hospital pronounced her clinically brain dead and stated that
she would be a good candidate for organ donation. However, only 18 hours after slipping into the coma, she began to recover, and,
on February 11, only one week after the near-fatal incident, she was released from the hospital.[213] Erin Shanahan, Mercy
Hospital's perplexed head pediatric nurse, said that "We never would have guessed it would turn out like this."[213] This case
demonstrates precisely why the euthanasia of comatose persons is such a dangerous practice.

• Scott and Jeff Mueller. These twin boys were born in 1981 sharing a leg and large intestine. They were fully developed from the
waist up. The attending physician, Petra Warren, decided that they were not worthy of life and attached a "DO NOT FEED" sign to
their bassinet. Several nurses disobeyed this order and fed the babies sugar water, which saved their lives.[214] Scott and Jeff were
successfully separated at Chicago's Children's Memorial Hospital the following year. Scott died of heart problems in 1984, but Jeff
is thriving and lives a normal lifestyle. Predictably, the parents and the doctor who wanted the twins to die were let off scott-free.

• Jacqueline Cole. Mrs. Cole awoke on May 15, 1986, 47 days after lapsing into a deep coma induced by a stroke, when a friend
came to pay his last respects. Doctors had said her chances of recovery were "one in a million." Her husband, a Presbyterian
minister, had gone to court on May 9 — just six days before — to have her disconnected from her life support systems. Fortunately
for her, Baltimore Circuit Judge John Brynes refused his request. The minister said that he had "no regrets" at trying to allow his
wife to die.[215]

• Michelle Odette. Marie Odette Henderson was 26 weeks pregnant when she was declared brain-dead on June 7, 1986, after
suffering a stroke three days earlier. Despite the fact that she was carrying a viable baby, Miss Henderson's parents decided to allow
her and her baby to die by disconnecting her from her life support systems. Henderson's fiance, Derrick Poole, decided to fight for
his baby's life and obtained a court order barring Marie's disconnection until after the baby was delivered. Dr. Donald Dyson
delivered a healthy baby girl at 33 weeks gestation. Michelle Odette's weight was 4 pounds, 5 ounces. Marie Henderson was then
disconnected from her life support systems and died three hours later. However, she lives on in her child.

• Carrie Coons. Carrie A. Coons, 86, of Rensselear, New York, was declared to be in an "absolutely irreversible vegetative state"
by her doctors after she suffered a stroke and cerebral hemorrhage in November of 1988. For nearly five months, she neither spoke
nor showed any signs of alertness. Her 88-year old sister and various doctors and lawyers petitioned the state Supreme Court to
allow the removal of her feeding tube. Her doctor, Michael Wolff, a nationally recognized expert in geriatric medicine, declared that
she was in a "hopeless" state with "absolutely no chance of recovery."[216]

     Coons was the first New York citizen whose petition to die was granted by the State Supreme Court. However, just two days
after the Court granted the petition, she woke up and began to eat and speak. Judge Joseph Harris wadded up the right-to-die writ
when he heard that she had recovered. Neurologist Ronald Cranford of Minneapolis, a White House commission advisor on right-
to-die issues, stated that "It's a dramatic case. It shows you that you're basically never dealing with certainties here."[216] Once
again, this case demonstrates why both direct and passive euthanasia should be banned.

• Harold Cybulski. The doctors were all ready. 79-year old grandfather Harold Cybulski of Barry's Bay, Ontario, had been
pronounced "brain dead and comatose," and the experts who pronounced him so stood by to disconnect his life support systems just
as soon as his family had said their last goodbyes. When his two-year old grandson ran into the room and yelled "Grandpa!,"
Cybulski woke up, sat up, and picked up the little boy! Six months later, he was leading a completely normal life, to include driving
the new car he had been looking forward to buying before he became comatose. Cybulski's doctors could find "no explanation" for
his instant recovery.[217]

• Barbie Blodgett and Her Baby. On June 30, 1988, near Yakima, Washington, the car that 24-year old Barbie Blodgett was riding
in was struck by a drunk driver. Three months pregnant at the time, she slipped into a persistent coma, and experts believed that she
would never regain consciousness, because her cerebrum, the large part of the brain which controls consciousness and voluntary
functions, was simply not working at all. She was unable to speak or eat and was fed through a stomach tube.[218] Other experts
predicted grimly that the baby she was carrying would die and/or would worsen her condition to the point of death.

    However, her pro-life family maintained hope and continued to pray. And on December 9, 1988, 8-pound Simon Alan Blodgett
was born perfectly healthy. Dr. Thomas Benedetti, director of perinatal medicine at the University of Washington School of
Medicine, stated that this was the fourth instance known of a comatose woman giving birth.[218] The day after the baby was born,
Barbara Blodgett recognized her son, Simon, and began to regain consciousness. A month later, she could communicate and feed
her newborn. A year later, she was still partially paralyzed and had to communicate via a computer keyboard. But she said that she
"hoped to walk and talk before Simon does," and seemed ready to achieve the goals she had set for herself.[218]

• Living Organ Donors. There have been a number of cases in which surgeons have been preparing to remove the organs from
"profoundly comatose" persons, only to have them wake up on the operating table.

    Just as a surgeon was preparing to remove his kidneys and eyes, S.W. Winogrond winked. He eventually recovered.

    Just as a doctor began to make an incision to remove his liver, Philip Cockerham's foot twitched. In North Carolina, an identical
scenario unfolded as doctors prepared to remove a 22-tear-old man's organs.

    In another case, doctors told the mother of a 14-year-old girl that she was "essentially brain dead," and asked them to donate her
organs. Two months later she had recovered and was living a normal life.

    Even a man who was declared dead after a traffic accident and spent two days lying in a metal box in a mortuary recovered
consciousness, screamed for help, and was rescued.[219]

    In every one of these cases — and in hundreds of other cases that are reported or unreported every year — doctors condemn to a
painful death people that they are "absolutely certain" will never recover.
    What percentage of people actually recover from PVS?
    Medical researchers have performed a number of extensive studies to determine how many people in so-called "irreversible
comas" actually recover.
    One study of 84 people with a "firm diagnosis" of PVS showed that 41 percent had regained consciousness within six months,
52 percent by one year, and 58 percent within three years.[220] A second study of 26 children in comas lasting more than 12 weeks
found that three-fourths eventually regained consciousness. Another study found that one-third of the 370 patients in a "PVS" for up
to one year recovered enough to return to work.[221]
    Totalling the numbers from these three studies, we see that 192 of 480 PVS patients — or 40 percent — eventually recovered.
     It is obvious that, when predicting the futures of patients who are deemed to be in so-called "persistent vegetative states," there
is no such thing as a "sure thing." It is also obvious that the main motives of many health professionals are the saving of medical
resources and cost control, not the saving or betterment of human life.
     It is a curious fact that most pro-euthanasia activists oppose capital punishment, primarily because judges and juries make
mistakes during trials that can result in an unjust sentence of death. In other words, once a person has been executed, not even the
most conclusive proof of his innocence can bring him back to life. Those who support euthanasia are therefore willing to spend an
average of $875,000 to keep a hardened killer behind bars for the rest of his natural life — and hundreds of thousands more on
multiple legal appeals to make absolutely certain that every person executed by the State is truly guilty as charged.[222] They are
not willing, however, to spend the same amount to keep an innocent comatose or ill person alive in the very real hope that he will
recover or at least live for an extended period of time.
     We must wonder at the level of outrage pro-euthanasia activists would show if it could be proven that close to two-thirds of
those executed were innocent — which is the same percentage of "irreversibly comatose" people who eventually recover.
     Pro-life activists may use precisely the same reasoning to oppose euthanasia. As noted below, medical people have judged
scores of people "irreversibly comatose," only to find that these people awaken and lead normal or nearly normal lives.
     Capital punishment is forever.
     And so is euthanasia.
     So, in order to be consistent, those who oppose capital punishment must also oppose euthanasia.

    Reason #2: Euthanasia Sets a Bad Example. Whether we like it or not, one of our most important roles as adults in society is
to set the example for younger and less experienced people. After all, what we teach young people will largely determine how they
run the world after they inherit it — and what kind of world our grandchildren will inherit.

     What we teach young people will also determine how they treat us when we are elderly and infirm.
     The number of teen suicides in the United States has exploded to more than 2,000 per year.[223] We read about suicide pacts
and teen murder/suicides almost on a weekly basis. Experts in the demographics of suicide (suicidologists) already call this situation
     What kind of an example does Janet Adkins give to teenagers when she kills herself just because her piano playing is beginning
to deteriorate? Or because she may experience some unknown degree of pain eight to ten years down the road — pain that probably
could easily be alleviated?
     If our society accepts euthanasia, how will we tell a despondent teenager he has no right to kill himself if the cheerleader he
adores spurns him? How about the young girl whose pet dies? Or who loses self-respect through premarital sex? Or the boy who
doesn't make the baseball team? Or who flunks out of college?
     Teenagers don't respond to a double standard. They don't accept the command, "Do as I say, not as I do." If euthanasia becomes
legal and accepted by society, we must expect our "epidemic" of teen suicide to become a "pandemic," with perhaps 10,000 to
20,000 additional cases per year. How will we react to 25,000 cases of teen suicide annually without appearing to be grossly
     Some pro-euthanasia activists say that an elderly and sick person choosing to die is totally different from a distraught teenager
who wants to "end it all." They say that euthanasia is a brave and rational willingness to "face the inevitable," while teenagers
contemplating suicide are unwilling to face their problems.
     Certainly there is a difference between an elderly person thinking about assisted suicide and a despondent teenaged girl with a
bottle of sleeping pills in her hand. But young people contemplating suicide in isolation are not thinking clearly at all, especially if
their problems are transitory or relatively easy to solve. Such distinctions are lost on them.

 Reason #3: The Euthanasia Mentality is Myopic and Lazy. Pro-euthanasia activists are extremely clever and skillful at
manipulating public opinion through emotional appeals such as the "hard cases" and through appeals to self-interest. They use the
same tools employed by the pro-contraception activists of the 1920s and 1930s (read any issue of Margaret Sanger's Birth Control
Review to see how heavily she emphasized the "hard cases"). They are also copying the tactics of the pro-abortion activists whose
entire strategy for legalizing abortion was built on an almost exclusive emphasis on the "hard cases" of rape, incest, and life-
threatening pregnancies. The euthanasiasts believe everyone should possess the right to do away with themselves, and they also
believe society should not be concerned about such self-destructive acts.
     This philosophy is not only irresponsible, it is extremely dangerous. Everyone in a society develops, throughout his life, a
complex web of relationships. Every person significantly affects many other members of society, often without realizing it.
     A society-system is roughly analogous to a human body. Its major cities represent organs; the capital is the brain (in the United
States, this 'brain' often appears to be mentally handicapped); the interstate highways are the arteries, and local roads are the
capillaries, carrying nutrients to every cell. We, as individuals, might represent blood cells conveying nutrients to every other cell
and organ in the body.
     In this setting, euthanasia could be considered a type of leukemia, where individual blood cells start destroying themselves
randomly and at an ever-increasing rate.
     No human body can live with an acute case of leukemia, and no society can endure if its people destroy themselves at a high
enough rate.
     All of a healthy body's cells work together to promote the common good of the body. Similarly, individuals work together to
advance the common good of society. Each of us plays a vital part in this complex corpus. Just as our bodies could not survive if
individual cells took it upon themselves to randomly 'self-destruct,' our society cannot tolerate the accelerated destruction of its
individual members without serious damage.

  Reason #4: Euthanasia is Despair Personified. What deeper expression of despair is there than to kill oneself?
     Virtually everyone has, at one time or another, experienced despair so deep that they may even have considered how easy it
would be to just "let go" and die. This kind of depression is no joke, and it does no good to simply tell the person to just "Snap out
of it!" Quick and easy solutions don't work — only focused attention and caring and love does.
     Deep despair can easily lead to one of the more than 30,000 suicides the United States suffers annually (see Figure 23-16).

Perhaps the saddest sight in life is a person totally without hope. This is because, as long as there is a means to overcome one's
troubles, hope remains. When a person has lost all hope, he has lost all faith that he has any control over his situation.
     Our society's emphasis on "choice" and "control" has aggravated this problem terribly. The anti-lifers, the government, and the
media tell us that we cannot have control if we cannot have a wide range of choices or avenues of action. So, we have
become conditioned to think that, if we lose options, we have lost control of our lives. And, if we lose control of our lives, we think
that those lives are not worth living. We perceive ourselves as less than "fully human" if we cannot have total control all of the time.
     This is nonsense. As long as we are living, we can seek to improve our situation. We can actually generate choices ourselves if
we have learned to possess initiative and imagination. What's more, there are always people, churches, groups and agencies
available to help, whatever our problems may be.
     To kill oneself, of course, is to really lose control of the situation.
     After all, once again — dead people don't choose!

     Reason #5: Euthanasia is Entropic. "Entropy" is the measure of the degree of disorder of systems. And all systems — from
the smallest to the largest, and from the simplest to the most complex — tend to accumulate entropy, unless positive steps are taken
to prevent this process. This immutable principle applies equally to living and nonliving systems.
     Every type of human or mechanical system requires effort in order to maintain it in an ordered state. Every type of system, if it
is neglected, will begin to decay and disintegrate. There are absolutely no exceptions to this rule (if you think there are, try to think
of one);

          A lawn will sprout weeds unless the gardener remains vigilant. Eventually, if it is not cared for, the lawn will return to its
           original riotous, biologically diverse and disordered state.
          A pickup truck will rust, detune, and accumulate beer cans unless the driver has pride of ownership. Eventually, if it is
           not maintained, it will fall apart and will be hauled to a junkyard.
          We read lately about our country's deteriorating infrastructure. Our roads, bridges, and water and sewer systems are
           falling apart because not enough maintenance money is allocated to them.
          Our bodies, as they age, accumulate aches and pains as organs wear out and begin to malfunction. We must feed our
           bodies the proper foods, exercise, and refrain from destructive activities like the use of tobacco products, illegal drugs,
           and excessive alcohol. Eventually, if our bodies are not maintained, they will sicken and die far too soon.
          Our consciences require constant exercise and discipline. If we do not maintain constant vigilance over our attitudes and
           beliefs, we will become self-centered. We will live only for self-gratification. Eventually, our consciences will sicken
           and die.
          Relationships require a lot of work if they are to bear fruit. Human beings do not respond well to neglect. A marriage or
           friendship needs commitment and effort in order to succeed. Millions of marriages have failed from simple neglect.
          A society requires unselfish, hard-working, imaginative and patriotic individuals for its survival. When its individual
           members become obsessed with themselves and their own selfish pleasures, a society will sicken and eventually be
           absorbed by other cultures. This principle, a basic lesson of history, holds true even for animal-based clans and troops.
          The principle of increasing entropy applies even to the largest system of all — the universe. As long as prodigious
           quantities of energy in all its forms is being exchanged, the universe will live on. However, tens of billions of years from
           now, the universe will experience its 'heat death,' when everything is the same temperature and entropy (disorder) is at a

    Entropy, while a fact of life everywhere, is considered 'bad' in virtually all cases. When highly organized systems (i.e., cars,
computers, bodies, minds and societies) increase their degree of entropy drastically, they will rust, break down, or die.
    The anti-life mentality is basically entropic by nature. It favors contraception, pornography, homosexual acts, sterilization,
abortion, and euthanasia. This strange mindset strives to destroy the natural and efficient function of the human reproductive system,
and ultimately, considers man to be just another animal.
    Curiously, while it considers humanity just another species of animal, it fails to recognize that non-instinct driven euthanasia is
unknown in the animal world.
     Finally, it is a universal axiom that anything manmade that is 'good' is difficult to initiate, maintain, improve or enlarge, while it
is difficult to prevent what is 'bad' from spontaneously initiating, continuing, or expanding — weeds, cancer, crime and rust are a
few examples.
     In other words, 'bad' manmade or man-influenced things grow by themselves; 'good' things must be continuously nurtured.
     By commutative reasoning, we may infer that whatever is man-influenced and grows by itself is 'bad.' This is particularly true
of social issues.
     Abortion is a good example of this reasoning. In a period of just five years, it expanded relentlessly, almost effortlessly, from a
few exceptions in a few states to a universal 'right' available through all nine months of pregnancy all over the country. By contrast,
a 'good' social expansion is the civil rights movement, which required decades of struggle on many fronts, the martyrdom of dozens,
and is still not complete.
     Another 'good' example of civil rights activism is our own pro-life (anti-abortion) movement, which must struggle relentlessly
against the full weight of the media and the state and Federal governments. Every small advance must be vigilantly guarded, or it
will be reabsorbed quickly and effortlessly.
     We can see that euthanasia is expanding relentlessly and effortlessly, just as abortion did twenty years ago. We began our
euthanasia 'program' with a few extreme cases — allowing those in extreme agony, days from dying, to pass away peacefully and
passively — and now, we annually have thousands of handicapped newborns dying of neglect and many more thousands of elderly
secretly 'put away' by our doctors and nursing homes.
     Another good way of telling whether something is "good" or "bad" is by measuring the amount of confusion it causes
(confusion being defined in this case as hindrance(s) to communication and/or understanding). If something is deliberately made
incomprehensible to average people, it is usually not in their best interest. If a social proposal is confusing and undecipherable, it is
usually something that the anti-lifers are trying to "slip by" us. In fact, they know that they must make things complicated and
incomprehensible in order to make their advances. This tactic might called "mystagoguery," which is the exact opposite of trying to
advance understanding.
     As always, anyone who sees the euthanasia issue in "black and white" terms is condemned as "simplistic" by the Hemlock
Society and other anti-life organizations. It is in the best interests of these groups to make the issue appear to be as complicated and
as vague as possible, because then the vast majority of the public will feel timid and unqualified to comment or even hold an
opinion on it.
     This mighty weapon of "mystagoguery" worked very well for the pro-abortionists, particularly regarding the issue of "when life
begins." Now the anti-lifers are trying to confuse us as to when human life ends.
     The thicket of conflicting pro-euthanasia laws and judgments, promulgated in a moral and ethical vacuum, are inevitably
leading to situations of unparalleled savagery and confusion.
     For example, 13-year old Bunny Brown was shot by Daniel Joseph Yates and subsequently lay in a coma in a hospital. Four
months after the brutal attack, she was regaining strength and was able to breathe by herself. However, her parents, sick of the
emotional stress connected to her injury, obtained a court order that authorized the hospital to starve Bunny to death.
     Then Daniel Yates, the would-be killer, reentered the scene. Somehow, he eluded the police and obtained another gun. He
entered the hospital and shot Bunny in the head, ending her life for good.
     At trial, Yates' lawyers argued that he should not stand trial for murder, since the hospital and Bunny's parents were already
killing her by starvation. Strangely, Yates' lawyers had previously arguedagainst allowing Bunny to starve to death, because if the
girl died by any cause, it would reflect unfavorably upon their client.
     A legal writer for the Bremerton [Washington] Star recommended that the jury should be instructed that Yates be found guilty
only if prosecutors prove that Bunny Brown would have died within three years and a day of the original assault had she continued
to receive food and water.
     What a tangled web we weave! Nowhere is this more true than in the issue of euthanasia.

                                     La eutanasia y el suicidio asistido
                                         también están mal desde
                                         el punto de vista secular
                                          Por Brian Clowes, Ph.D.
       Director del Instituto de Capacitación para la Defensa de la Vida y la Familia de Human Life

Una cosa es hablar a favor del carácter sacro de la vida humana creada a imagen y semejanza de Dios, pero
otra cosa es cuando los que estamos en contra de la eutanasia y del suicidio asistido tenemos que hablarle a
alguien que está a favor de estos crímenes y que no cree en Dios o el "dios" en quien cree permite que la
persona haga lo que de la gana.

Los activistas pro vida tienen que ser capaces de hablar en términos de las consecuencias negativas que la
eutanasia y el suicidio asistido tienen en la sociedad -- como, por ejemplo, la inseguridad personal, el
aumento de la violencia y el fraude, etc. Y deben ser capaces de explicar estas consecuencias en términos
muy específicos y relevantes.

La eutanasia es para siempre

En EE.UU. se han registrado cientos de casos en los cuales los médicos han creído que los pacientes se
encontraban en un estado de "coma irreversible" y que luego han despertado y vuelto a la vida normal. Entre
estos casos están los de Teisa Franklin, Scott y Jeff Mueller, Jacqueline Cole, Carrie Coons, Harold Cybulski y
Barbie Blodgett.

En cada uno de estos casos -- y en cientos de otros que se reportan o no se reportan cada año -- los médicos
han condenado a una muerte dolorosa a personas respecto de las cuales ellos estaban "completamente
seguros" que no se iban a recuperar. Sin embargo, en aproximadamente el 50% de estos casos, el paciente sí
se recuperó, parcial o completamente.

A la luz de estos datos, es evidente que a la hora de predecir el futuro de aquellos pacientes a quienes se les
considera en un "estado vegetativo persistente", no hay plena seguridad de que no se van a recuperar. Es
evidente también que los motivos principales de muchos profesionales de la salud es ahorrar recursos
médicos y controlar los costos, no el salvar o mejorar a la vida humana.

Es irónico el hecho de que el Estado esté dispuesto a gastar millones de dólares en múltiples apelaciones
para asegurarse de que cada reo que va a ser ejecutado sea verdaderamente culpable de sus cargos, pero al
mismo tiempo no esté dispuesto a tener el mismo cuidado con personas cuyo único "crimen" es haber sido
consideradas, por la profesión médica, "vidas que no valen la pena ser vividas". La pena capital es para
siempre, es verdad; pero también lo es la eutanasia.

De manera que, para ser consistentes, aquellos que se oponen a la pena de muerte también deben oponerse
a la eutanasia.

La eutanasia promueve el suicidio

Nos guste o no, uno de nuestras funciones más importantes como adultos en la sociedad es ser ejemplo
para las personas más jóvenes o de menos experiencia. Después de todo, lo que le enseñemos a la juventud
determinará en gran parte qué rumbo ellos a su vez le darán al mundo y qué clase de mundo nuestros nietos
heredarán. Además, lo que le enseñemos a la gente joven determinará como ellos nos tratarán a nosotros
cuando seamos ancianos y estemos enfermos.

En EE.UU., la tasa de suicidios entre los adolescentes se ha triplicado en los últimos 15 años hasta alcanzar
la cifra de más de 2,500 muertes por año. Nos enteramos de los pactos suicidas y de los asesinatos-suicidios
de adolescentes casi semanalmente. Los expertos en la demografía del suicidio (suicidólogos) consideran
que esta situación es una "epidemia".

¿Qué clase de ejemplo le da un adulto a los adolescentes cuando comete suicidio porque teme el dolor o la
"pérdida de su dignidad" o porque teme la posibilidad de sufrir un desconocido grado de dolor en el futuro --
dolor que probablemente pueda ser aliviado?

Si nuestra sociedad acepta la eutanasia, ¿cómo podremos decirle a un adolescente desesperado que él no
tiene derecho a matarse si la chica que él "adora" lo rechaza? ¿Qué le diremos a la jovencita que pierde el
respeto por sí misma por haber caído en la fornicación o al joven qué fue despedido de la universidad por no
aprobar los cursos?

Los adolescentes y los jóvenes no aceptan la doblez. No aceptan el mandamiento de "Haz lo que yo digo,
pero no lo que yo hago". Si legalizan la eutanasia y nuestra sociedad la acepta, la "epidemia" de suicidios de
adolescentes se convertirá en una "pandemia", con quizás de 10.000 a 20.000 casos más al año. ¿Cómo
reaccionaremos ante los 25.000 casos de suicidios de adolescentes al año sin presentarnos como unos

La mentalidad en pro de la eutanasia es miope y holgazana

Los activistas a favor de la eutanasia son muy astutos y hábiles en manipular la opinión pública apelando a
las emociones por medio de la presentación de "casos difíciles" y apelando al interés propio. Creen que
todos debemos ser capaces de suicidarnos y que la sociedad no debe preocuparse por actos tan auto-

Esta mentalidad no es sólo irresponsable, sino también extremadamente peligrosa. En la sociedad todos
desarrollamos, a través de la vida, un complejo sistema de relaciones. Cada persona afecta a muchas otras
de forma significativa todos los días, muchas veces sin ni siquiera darse cuenta.

La eutanasia es un tipo de cáncer social agresivamente maligno, que tiene un comienzo insignificante pero
que se extiende rápidamente. Nadie puede vivir con un cáncer agudo, y ninguna sociedad puede sobrevivir si
sus miembros se destruyen a sí mismos en números alarmantes.

Todas las células del cuerpo trabajan juntas para promover el bien común del organismo. De manera similar,
las personas trabajan juntas para promover el bien común de la sociedad. Cada uno de nosotros juega un
papel vital en este complejo corpus.

La eutanasia es la desesperación personificada

¿Qué expresión más profunda de la desesperación puede haber que el matarse a uno mismo? En algunas
ocasiones, muchas personas han experimentado una desesperación tan grande que hasta han considerado
qué fácil sería el simplemente "tirarlo todo por la borda" y morir. Este tipo de desesperación puede llevar
fácilmente a cometer este acto fatal a más de una de las 25.000 personas que se suicidan cada año en

Quizás lo más triste en la vida es ver a alguien que ha perdido totalmente la esperanza. Esto se debe a que,
mientras existan los medios para vencer las dificultades, todavía queda la esperanza. Cuando una persona
ha perdido toda esperanza, ha perdido también la fe de tener control sobre su situación. El énfasis tan
grande que nuestra sociedad le da a la "libertad" y al "control" ha empeorado sobre manera este problema.
Los activistas antivida, el gobierno y los medios de comunicación nos dicen que no podemos tener control,
si no disponemos de un amplio margen de opciones o de vías de acción. Por consiguiente, estamos
condicionados a pensar que, si perdemos esas opciones, hemos perdido el control de nuestra vida. Y si
perdemos el control de nuestra vida, pensamos que no vale la pena vivir. Pensamos que somos menos que
"plenamente humanos", si no tenemos un control total todo el tiempo.

Eso es una tontería. Mientras estemos en esta vida, tenemos la posibilidad de mejorar nuestra situación.
Nosotros mismos podemos generar opciones si hemos aprendido a tener iniciativa e imaginación. Más
todavía, siempre habrá personas, iglesias, grupos y agencias dispuestas a ayudarnos, no importa cuáles sean
nuestros problemas.

Matarse a uno mismo, desde luego, sí significa realmente perder el control. Después de todo, ¡los muertos
no tienen opciones!

Nota: Este artículo es traducción de "Why is Euthanasia Wrong from a Secular Viewpoint?", en Brian Clowes,
Ph.D., The Facts of Life (Front Royal, Virginia, EE.UU.: Human Life International, 1997), 148-149. Este
magnífico libro es una fuente completa de información (en inglés) sobre todos los temas que tienen que ver
con la defensa de la vida y la familia. Para obtenerlo, diríjase a las oficinas de Human Life International,
cuyos datos se encuentran en Organizaciones que luchan contra de la eutanasia y el suicidio asistido.

Fuente: U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of the Census. Reference Data Book and Guide to Sources,
Statistical Abstract of the United States, 1995. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Goverment Printing Office. Table 128,
"Death Rates, by Selected Causes and Age: 1980 to 1992.

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