Is Euthanasia Euphemism?

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What is Euthanasia?

Euthanasia literally means ‘good death' or ‘easy death.’ People when they are battling with death or when there is little or no hope for their recovery is killed as a mark of mercy. This is done to make their death easy rather than leaving them to fate, to suffer and toil day and night.

What is Euphemism?

Euphemism is an alternate word for terms that might seem provocative or unpleasant. In other words, it is a pleasant or soft sounding expression for the otherwise offensive terms. Say for example, ‘spill the beans' means unintentionally or erroneously revealing some secret information.

Is Euthanasia a Euphemism?

On the one hand, Euthanasia is claimed to be executed on the grounds of mercy for the suffering and on the other hand, it is unquestionably an act of killing. Killing for mercy doesn’t in any way make it less than killing. This act was prevalent in contemporary times. However, these days, with advanced medical technology and development, there are innumerable ways to prolong and save the life of the patient.

The euphemism Euthanasia helps in making a cruel and tragic act appear more compassionate and merciful. Many countries have legalized this practice saying that it is a helping hand to people who are terminally ill.

Arguments favouring Euthanasia

People come up with arguments saying that it helps people to die with dignity and honor instead of enduring much pain and complications without any hope. Some are of the opinion that even if senior citizens are permitted to live, they do not have the energy or health to contribute to the welfare of society in any way.

Bedridden ones express their willingness or preference to end their lives thinking they are bothering their families. So euthanasia helps in such a situation.

Euthanasia is also favoured in the case of infants born with congenital disorders. Even if their life is prolonged, it only leads to burden the parents in future. So mercy killing can reduce such unrest.

The unborn if diagnosed with any sort of health issues are also eliminated from the world by this merciful act.

Arguments against Euthanasia

Cosmologist, author, physicist and director of research at the Centre for Theoretical Cosmology, Dr Stephen Hawking was diagnosed with a motor neuron disease. His brain has transcended disability. Despite his disabilities, he almost changed the misconceptions concerning people with disability. He has set an example for all those who feel bogged down by their life. So, taking the life of a person who has apparent differences from the normal people is in no way agreeable.

Helen Keller was born blind and she is now an inspiration for the disabled persons. So does Euthanasia helps in any way?

Kentucky Fried Chicken popularly known as KFC is not Greek to us. KFC has become an integral part of our diet. The founder of KFC, Colonel Sanders climbed the ladder in his 60s. So can anybody argue that success recedes from old age people or senior citizens ( a more euphemistic term )?
If elder persons are do die without suffering why don’t we ask them to skip their medicines and surrender to death. If you fear that they might have to suffer, what is the need to rush into the hospital when they feel sick? This is because you would obviously want your grandparents to remain alive. Euthanasia is chosen by those who have no belief in the medical treatment and hope in its ability to cure the people and being them back to life even from a coma stage.

By killing an unborn from its womb, one is denying its right to life. Abortion is an altogether different case that could be preferred if there is a valid reason.
People who want to end their lives can be subject to a good counselling session and gradually recover them from suicidal tendencies. Sanitising suicide in the name of mercy is not a good option. It may be a reality that seems very humane and sympathetic but it actually lacks empathy.


Euthanasia has promoters as well as opponents even today. ‘Killing' is always a cruel term. The euphemism masks the cruel face and bitter reality behind this so-called moving term. Euphemism doesn’t reduce the gravity of the term.

With the mushrooming medical institutions and growing researches and technical innovations, the chances of survival of a person even in critical stages are not negligible. It is still a lingering question in this modern world whether the act of euthanasia must be eliminated or not.

Written by - Maryam Salim

Edited by - Nidhi

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Is Euthanasia Euphemism? Is Euthanasia Euphemism? Reviewed by EMN on March 12, 2020 Rating: 5

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