Monday, July 24, 2006

Kill All Humans

I wrote this as a speach for my public speaking class, this is just an edited version of that speach.

Kill All Humans
By Anthony McConnell

Imagine you have just been diagnosed with a terminal disseize., you are going to die.
Euthanasia or assisted suicide has been defined as the act or practice of killing or permitting the death of hopelessly sick or injured individuals in a relatively painless way for reasons of mercy (Jason H. Richard of the Windsor Star).

Out of all 50 states only Oregon has a law allowing assisted suicide (Don Colburn of the Oregonian)

Lets say you are going to die! You have ALS better known as Lou Gahrig’s disease. Slowly the nerves affecting your muscles will deteriorate until you are almost paralyzed.

1st lose ability to walk, next you wont be able to sit up on your own, then you will lose the abilities to speak and swallow, last you will slowly suffocate and die.

This wont happen over night but over the course of a few years. Worst of all your mind will remain in tact, you will be fully aware of everything that is happening to you but wont be able to do anything about it.

You will awake at night screaming, afraid not that you will die but how you will die. Slowly, painfully suffocating, essentially drounding on your own body’s fluids.

In Michael Petrou’s article “A Time to Die” published in Maclean’s on September 5 he tells the story of Hans Knottenbelt. Everything I have described happened to Hans. His daughter Karen was forced to watch her father suffer until the day he could no longer take the pain. Hans was Dutch and lived in the Netherlands, he had another option than a slow pain filled death.

According to a recent Gallup poll on values and beliefs 75% of Americans support assisted suicide.

Hans gathered his family around him and told them his plans. “I’m finished here,” he said. His family gathered one last time, Hans sat propped up in a chair at the end of the dinning room table the rest of his family eating dinner around him. When dinner was finished he told his family he hoped they would have many more dinners like that.

After dinner the doctor asked Hans where he would like to die. Hans hugged his wife and family and lay down in the bed he shared with his wife , the doctor added an anesthetic to Hans’s feeding tube then the lethal medication that would take his life.

Today thousands of terminally ill Americans who quite literally would rather be dead are forced to suffer in pain. While assisted suicide has limitations it should be legal in all states. Many states as well as the federal government are preparing to decide weather or not to legalize this humane and dignified practice. When you go to the polls to vote remember Hans’s story and what his daughter said shortly after his death

“I think its one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever seen -- someone you love so dearly pass away so peacefully.”

Works Cited

Richard, Jason H. “No Malice in Someone Ending Their Suffering.” Editorial. Windsor Star. 16 Nov. 2005: A9. Lexisnexis. Northwest College Lib., Powell, WY. 19 Nov. 2005. .

Colburn, Don. “‘Why Am I Not Dead.’” The Oregonian. 4 Mar. 2005. Lexisnexis. Northwest College Lib., Powell, WY. 19 Nov. 2005. .

Petrou, Michael. “A Time to Die.” Maclean’s. 5 Sep. 2005: 22. Lexisnexis. Northwest College Lib., Powell, WY. 19 Nov. 2005. .

Moore, David. “Three in Four Americans Support Euthanasia.” Gallup Poll News Service. 17 May 2005. Lexisnexis. Northwest College Lib., Powell, WY. 19 Nov. 2005. .


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