Euthanasia is the taking of life. It may also be called, “Putting someone/something out of his or her/its misery” or “Murder.” Depending on the context and bias of the writer, Euthanasia can be a kind or evil act. Yet, people have such a lack of respect for life that it is common for people to think of Euthanasia as an easy answer in the developed world.
People in the developed world think it is an easy answer because they have such a lack of respect for life. Some people think they are going to have an afterlife and some think they are just going to rot in the ground, and yet both groups will often consider death to be an escape from uncomfortable settings.
A study was done in Britain by the Sheffield Hallam University in which researchers visited people picked at random and asked questions about choosing life or death. They presented people with a scenario of ten years perfect health and ten years in pain with various ailments. People were then asked if they would be prepared to give up part of their life in exchange for not having to suffer their ailments.
There were people that said they would cut some of their life short if it meant they didn’t live in pain, or didn’t have to live without walking, or being able to bath, etc. What surprised the researchers was that there were people willing to live ten years in extreme pain without being able to walk, bathe, etc, and still would not give up any time at all in order to put an end to it. Even when asked if they would lose 6 months in return for 9.5 years in full health, people said they would rather live a full ten years but in extreme pain.
The researchers naturally assumed that life didn’t mean as much to some people as it did, and that is what many of their results gave them back. They were actually creating a study to support Euthanasia, which is why the researchers were visibly upset when they found people that said they would not give up a day of their life, and that given the choice they would rather live a full ten years in terrible health than 9 years and 364 days in pain and poor health.
The study was aimed so that it was highly open to interpretation, and was quite unfair in that it made it very difficult for people to say they did not want to die in return for the removal of suffering. The same question was asked a number of times with a different slant so that the person being questioned felt silly being asked the same thing repeatedly, especially if that person hung on to the idea of life because the researcher became even more incredulous on many occasions.
A great quote came when a Euthanasia supporting researcher asked someone why he would rather live 10 full years of extreme pain as oppose to 9 years and 364 days of full health, in other words saying you can give up one day in return for missing 10 years of suffering, and the man replied, “But, who knows what great things I would miss in that one day.”