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Explain the case for voluntary euthanasia.

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Introduction

Transfer-Encoding: chunked ´╗┐Explain the case for voluntary euthanasia. [35] Euthanasia can be defined as, ?the painless killing of a patient suffering from an incurable and painful disease or in an irreversible coma.? When considering euthanasia we must consider the difference between acts of commission and acts of omission. Acts of omission is when something is deliberately not done, e.g. not giving a blood transfusion and just perhaps leaving the person to die ? this would not be classified as euthanasia. The BMA (British Medical Association) recognises a distinction between withholding treatment that may become burdensome on the patient and deliberately bringing a person?s life to an end. Voluntary euthanasia is an act of commission; a positive, deliberate action e.g. administering tablets deliberately to bring death. There are many that would support assisted dying but not assisted suicide, although the two are closely linked. Assisted dying only applies to terminally ill, mentally competent adults and requires the dying patient, after meeting strict legal safeguards, to self administer life-ending medication. Assisted dying is legalised and regulated in the US States of Oregon and Washington. ...read more.

Middle

When considering euthanasia Preference Utilitarianists would consider the advantages of life rather than death, both for the persons concerned and for the family. When considering this issue Utilitarianists think about quality of life as well as quantity of life. Milan Kundera wrote, ?Dogs do not have many advantages over people, but one of them is extremely important: euthanasia is not forbidden by law in their case; animals have the right to a merciful death.? Furthermore, situation ethics could be used to support voluntary euthanasia. Quite simply, you can dispense with rules about killing, because the most loving thing to do may well be to give someone a peaceful death. Situation Ethics is Personal - it puts people before rules. It is also Pragmatic, allowing us to do whatever works best in the circumstances. What is the use in keeping someone alive to suffer? Relativism is at the heart of the theory. This means that in any situation, when faced with a difficult decision about whether to help someone to die, we need to act out of love, which means ignoring any hard and fast rule and doing what the situation requires. ...read more.

Conclusion

He did say that, if he were solely responsible, his mother might not continue to live. There are three main arguments in favour of voluntary euthanasia. Firstly, the autonomy argument, which argues that euthanasia is an issue of personal autonomy. Personal autonomy is the capacity to decide for oneself and pursue a course of action in one's life, often regardless of any particular moral content. It should be up to the individual to decide when they wish to die, and it should not be dictated by anyone else. John Stuart Mill commented, ?over himself, over his own body and mind, the individual is sovereign.? The second argument is the compassion argument, which is closely linked to both utilitarianism and situation ethics. This argues that we should allow the patient a dignified death and a release from their suffering. The final argument relates to public policy; if we make voluntary euthanasia legal, we will be able to control how it is performed. Overall, euthanasia is an extremely sensitive issue and all sides of the argument should treat those involved with the upmost compassion and respect. To quote Pamela Bone, ?I'm not afraid of being dead. I'm just afraid of what you might have to go through to get there.? ...read more.

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