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Give an account of the ethical arguments in support of suicide.

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Introduction

Transfer-Encoding: chunked ´╗┐Give an account of the ethical arguments in support of suicide. [35] In a broad sense suicide can be defined as, ?the act of intentionally ending your life.? However, there are many different types of suicide. Durkheim identified four kinds: egoistic suicide, which is the result of feeling one?s life is meaningless; altruistic suicide, the act of giving one?s life for the greater good; anomic suicide, the result of a major social change that disrupts a person?s sense of order; and fatalistic suicide, the results of excessive regulation, when one?s future is pitilessly blocked by oppressive discipline, such as in a prison or dictatorship. ...read more.

Middle

Suicide could be justified if one fell victim to severe pain or disease, but otherwise suicide would usually be seen as a rejection of one's social duty. Furthermore, Hume was another writer who believed that suicide could be ethically justified. He wrote, ?a man who retires from life does no harm to society: he only ceases to do good.? David Hume was attempting to refute the idea that suicide was a sin against God. Hume argues that suicide is no more a rebellion against God than is saving the life of someone who would otherwise die, or changing the position of anything in one's surroundings. ...read more.

Conclusion

Freud claimed that we all have a death drive and that our ego may not be able to cope with negative experiences such as guilt and we may self-destruct. In terms of morality, suicide is not an act of free will, and therefore the person that takes their own life cannot be held responsible for their actions. Furthermore, altruistic suicide could be a courageous and selfless act, in line with both utilitarianism and situation ethics. For example, falling on a grenade refers to the deliberate act of using one's body to cover a live time-fused hand grenade, absorbing the explosion and fragmentation in an effort to save the lives of others nearby. ...read more.

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