Euthanasia 

Covering euthanasia and applying it to utilitarianism, Natural Law, Kantian ethics and Christianity. 

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  • Created by: Yamanam
  • Created on: 20-04-13 16:12
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  • Euthanasia
    • The quality of life
      • = For life to be worthwhile we must attain certain attributes e.g. ability to communicate
        • Many people  if in Stephen Hawkins position would feel they lack quality of life but obviously his ability to think means he retains in own quality of life
      • Those who seek euthanasia often must meet conditions e.g. correct state of mind
      • What the Hippocratic oath of the doctor?
        • = The role of the doctor is to save lives and abstain from doing harm
      • Slippery Slope Argument
        • When a theory  leads to something bad happening where the situation gets progressively worse
    • The sanctity of life
      • = the sacredness of human life
      • Life should be preserved
        • As stated by the philosopher Ronald Dworkin
          • Life should be of high quality
          • He states if we are no longer able to achieve a eudaimonic quality of life it would be wrong to continue preserving their life e.g comas
      • Life should be of high quality
      • All lives should be treated as sacred
        • A human being has no right to kill what God created
      • All lives are sacred
        • Each person is unique
      • All life is sacred
        • Without life, nothing can exist
    • The right to life
      • The issues of individual autonomy
        • We  have absolute right over our body so surely we can choose euthanasia if we so wish.
      • Right to death?
        • If we are suffering surely we should have a right to die?
    • Christianity and Euthanasia
      • General Christian View
        • For
          • End of lifecare
            • Applies more to terminally ill patients
          • Exception...
            • For example respecting someones choice to die
        • Against
          • All human lives are equally valuable
          • The process of dying is spiritually important, and should not be disrupted
          • Humans are valuable because we were created in Gods image
          • Life is a gift from God
      • Catholic View
        • Qutes
          • A pope "Euthanasia is a grave violation of the law of God"
          • "You shall not kill"
          • "nothing and no one can in any way permit the killing of an innocent human being, whether a foetus or an embryo, an infant or an adult, an old person, or one suffering from an incurable disease, or a person who is dying"
        • Against
          • The value of life is to precious
          • We do not have a right to die
            • The church regards it as morally acceptable to refuse extraordinary and aggressive medical means to preserve life. Refusing such treatment is not euthanasia but a proper acceptance of the human condition in the face of death.
    • Kantian Ethics and Euthanasia
      • Disagree on grounds that we have a duty to protect one another
      • Kant argued that if you stopped doing something every-time you felt pain, you wouldn't have much in life
        • You feel pain in childbirth and sports
      • Furthermore it opposes the Summum Bonum
      • He was alive in a time where palliative care didn't really exist  maybe he would approve?
    • Utilitarianism and euthanasia
      • Modern day utilitarians
        • A mill approach (disagree)
          • Oppose involuntary euthanasia because it opposed human freedom and autonomy
          • "greatest good of greatest number"
          • Mill apprach agree
            • "Over himself, over his own body and mind, the individual is sovereign"
              • Freedom of choice
        • A singer approach (agree)
          • Except changed his view when it was his won mother...
          • Keeping alive those with a poor quality of live is costly to society.
            • Would achieve greatest good of greatest number.
              • Life support machine = expensive
              • Lethal injection = cheap
            • Takes stress away from friends and family?
              • Yet some may wish to care for someone
                • Terry Pratchet wishes to have euthanasia but his wife still wants to care for him
      • Some more agreeing
        • Double effect
          • E.g.g giving high amounts of morphine to reduce pain but kills them as well
        • Negative Utilitarianism
          • Richard Ryder in 1990 came up with painism
            • Prevention of pain is the sole moral issue in making a moral descion
            • Rejects the idea of maximising of pleasures because it can justify gang rape
    • Natural law and euthanasia
      • Assisted suicide opposes the primary precept of preserving life.
        • Therefore opposes God.
      • Role of the Dr?
        • Aristotle  believed in final ends and purpose
          • Doctors oath  - how can suddenly kill, it goes against their purpose,
            • Assisted suicide opposes the primary precept of preserving life.
              • Therefore opposes God.
        • Doctors oath  - how can suddenly kill, it goes against their purpose,
        • Doesn't promote the key idea of a harmonious society
    • Humans are valuable because we were created in Gods image

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