What philosophers have said about euthanasia

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what philosophers have said about euthanasia

Euthanasia Quotes (40 quotes)

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The Euthanasia Debate – Singer v Fisher – Should Voluntary Euthanasia be Legalised?

Euthanasia and suicide in antiquity: viewpoint of the dramatists and philosophers

An agent who takes his own life acts in violation of the moral law, according to Kant; suicide, and, by extension, assisted suicide are therefore wrong. By a similar argument, and with a few important exceptions, killing is wrong; implicitly, then, voluntary euthanasia is also wrong. Kant's conclusions are uncompelling and his argument in these matters is undermined on considering other areas of his thought. Kant, in forbidding suicide and euthanasia, is conflating respect for persons and respect for people, and assuming that, in killing a person either oneself or another , we are thereby undermining personhood. But an argument along these lines is faulty according to Kant's own standards. Even if some Kantians adhere to this doctrine, others can reject it.

1. Introduction

Although more than years have passed, the dilemma posed by euthanasia still generally divides society—a vexed question which has been debated in the medical, legal, philosophical and theological literature. In antiquity, active euthanasia and suicide were subjects of concern. Active euthanasia was rejected by the majority of both philosophers and dramatists because it was considered to be a violation of the autonomy of the individual and an action against the will of the gods. Passive euthanasia was more acceptable, either on the grounds of physical pain or out of a deep respect for the nature of human life and what fate brings to it. Even though innovations in palliative medicine can offer the best possible quality of life, there is still a minority of patients who suffer from excruciating pain, be it physical or mental.

Supreme Court on the Right to Die — Cruzan v. Director Missouri Health; Vacco v. Quill; Washington v. Augustine, Aquinas, More, Hume, Kant. Many classic philosophers examined the morality of suicide in a range of situations including prolonged illness, decrepitude through old age, the prospect of torture, and the desire to hasten entry into the afterlife. The views of five great philosophers are included here. For Augustine, the more high-minded person is the one who faces life's ills, rather than escapes them.

The entry sets out five conditions often said to be necessary for anyone to be a candidate for legalized voluntary euthanasia and, with appropriate qualifications, physician-assisted suicide , outlines the moral case advanced by those in favor of legalizing voluntary euthanasia, and discusses the five most important objections made by those who deny that voluntary euthanasia is morally permissible and who are, in consequence, opposed to its being legalized. Accordingly, the motive of the person who performs an act of euthanasia is to benefit the one whose death is brought about. It is important to emphasize the motive of benefiting the person who is assisted to die because well-being is a key value in relation to the morality of euthanasia see Section 3 below. Nonetheless, the defensibility of the contention that someone can be better off dead has been the subject of extensive philosophical deliberation. Those who claim that a person can be better off dead believe this to be true when the life that remains in prospect for that person has no positive value for her a possibility which is discussed by e.

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