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Does a person have the right to bring his/her own life to an end? Does a foetus have the right to live or is it the mother’s choice whether it does or not?

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Introduction

R.E Coursework - Abortion and Euthanasia Does a person have the right to bring his/her own life to an end? Does a foetus have the right to live or is it the mother's choice whether it does or not? The issue of the right to life lies at the centre of much moral and ethical debate today. The key issue in the abortion debate is "What constitutes a human being?" When does a zygote or embryo become a human being and therefore assume the right to not be killed? Abortion is the termination of an unborn baby whilst still in the womb. Abortion was made legal in the UK in 1967 under the Abortion Act although this did not apply to Northern Irish law and it is still illegal here. It was legalised in 1967 in the UK and is allowed up to 24 weeks, but could happen later in certain cases, i.e. to save the mothers life. In May 1996, the Termination of Pregnancy Restriction was read in the House Of Lords and meant that the Abortion Act of 1967 was amended so that to perform terminations on the sole ground of a diagnosis of Down's Syndrome. Although this was inconsistent and contradictory with it's early legal development, this provides the prominent statutory framework on which abortion is based. ...read more.

Middle

"So God created human beings, making them to be himself" (Genesis 1:27) Different Protestant groups hold different positions but stress the rights of individual conscience before God. Exodus 21:22 states that if 2 men are fighting and wound the pregnant woman, they shall have to pay their husband a fine if she a miscarriage, but they will have to give a life for life if the woman herself dies. Early Protestant reformers had an even stricter view of abortion than the Catholic Church at the time, but the majority no longer do so and much wider views on abortion prevail. What about Euthanasia? Is it ok to end the life of a person who is in pain or terminally ill? In spite of modern medicine and new surgical techniques, people still die. When the time comes, we naturally hope our passing is as easy and as painless as possible. Euthanasia means "mercy killing" or "assisted suicide". When a cat gets a fatal disease, we ask the vet to put it out of its misery because that seems the most compassionate thing to do. So if the needle is the right way out for an old loved pet, why not for grandma as well? When it is clear that a person's life is nearing its end anyway, isn't it the most loving (and therefore the most Christian) ...read more.

Conclusion

I think this is the only type of abortion that should be legal, but of course "back street" abortions will never be eradicated and I don't think there is much we can do to stop this, but I don't think we should endorse it either. I think Involuntary Euthanasia should be legalised for certain illnesses. I think a law should be brought in with certain diseases so that if a person is in the later stages of one of these certain diseases and is rapidly and painfully going toward death, then they should be allowed to be mercy killed. With Voluntary Euthanasia, I believe that it should be completely legalised. If the person is in extreme pain or misery, which they must be, if they want to die, and they are of sound mind, then I believe it is their choice whether the live or die in this world. In such countries as Holland where there is no real punishment for Euthanasia, they are just killing people who are old and sick. What is to stop the world turning into a nazi style regime of perfection, where the imperfect are killed off at birth and when they get "over the hill", they are then killed. I think if we continue the way we are going, this is exactly what will happen and the world will in fact turn into "a culture of death" ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 Sean Mc Quade 12B ...read more.

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