Directions: After reading the sample counterargument paragraph below, answer the questions that follow it.
Critics argue that the reason why some terminally ill patients wish to commit suicide is nothing more than melancholia. Patients suffering terminal illness might tend to be negative, hopeless, and depressed. In “When Patients Request Assistance with Suicide,” Dr. Michael Maskin, an associate professor of clinical psychiatry at Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center in New York, argues that in many cases, dying patients’ thinking is simply occupied by negative reactions to their critical condition (1999). In other words, most of the reasons why terminally ill patients
request doctors to assist them in committing suicide might be caused by certain problems related to their illness. For example, they may be experiencing problems such as hopelessness because there is no effective treatment, anxiety over doctors’ very expensive fees, and regret for their family’s burden of taking care of them (Maskin, 1999). For this reason, opponents argue that the terminally ill patient needs psychotherapy. Therefore, people who oppose doctor-assisted suicide believe that these patients are much too depressed to make a logical decision.
1. What is this paragraph about?
2. Who is the expert?
3. What is the name of the article that the expert’s opinion is taken from?
4. When was this article published?
5. What does the expert argue?
6. What examples are used to support the expert’s opinion?
7. Based on the examples, what do the critics argue that dying people need?
8. What conclusion is reached?