How Does Steinbeck Present Euthanasia In Of Mice And Men

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Throughout life, experiencing loss and grief is something that most will find inevitable. It will always be hard to see someone you love pass on, however, there are less painful ways for bystanders to watch loved ones go. Euthanasia, more commonly known as mercy killing, is one of these painless treatments that allow patients to put an end to their incurable suffering, while also giving their companions a chance to move on. During John Steinbeck's classic novella, Of Mice and Men, this controversial topic has come about on multiple occasions and will surface again in the most impactful final chapter. Chapter 5, the chapter previous to the ending chapter, is the turning point for this acclaimed novel and is where the spiral toward euthanasia …show more content…

Following this tragic event, Curley, the husband of the victim, had planned with his crew on murdering Lennie in the most excruciating way possible. However, Lennie had already fled the scene with no trace, giving George, Lennie’s lifelong friend, the opportunity to send the group in the wrong direction. With the time George had bought, he advanced towards Lennie's hiding place in the brush. Upon arriving, he creeps closer to his tense companion, instructing him to look across the river and imagine his vivid American Dream as though it will become his reality. Slowly, George raises the barrel of his gun, hovers it behind Lennie's head, and finally pulls the trigger. This may have been the hardest decision George will ever have to make, but he was putting Lennie's well-being over his own. Although there were other courses of action, this was the most appropriate and effective decision making it an honorable and acceptable …show more content…

This quote proves how George finally came to the sense that Lennie is a prevalent problem and a danger to others. Therefore, it would be best for society if Lennie was eliminated as a threat since this situation occurred during the Great Depression. On top of that, as previously stated, during this time, people couldn't quite fathom the idea that others are different, which made people similar to Lennie seem inferior. Due to this sense of inferiority, Lennie was never going to be accepted for who he was during this period. The cycle would inevitably end up repeating itself causing Lennie harm and terror repeatedly. So, though killing Lennie may be best for the public's safety, it can also be viewed as a positive for the fearful Lennie. Killing Lennie would send him to the only place that George knows he will be truly happy, in heaven, living his American dream. Overall, Lennie has proved himself time and time again to be an outright criminal, and peacefully killing him would easily terminate him as a threat. Although this seems quite selfish for society, it has already become clear that it is best for Lennie as well, instead of forcing him to return to his phase of terror when constantly facing public

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