Euthanasia - 1 Intro to Logic 4 December 2006 The Issue:...

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1 Intro to Logic 4 December 2006 The Issue: Euthanasia Euthanasia is a very delicate subject. It is known as ‘assisted suicide’ or ‘mercy killing’. There are three basic stands that people take towards euthanasia: there are the people who are all for it who feel it is right to let people die so they don’t have to live in pain anymore, there are the people who are absolutely in every way against it, and then there are the people who want to be on both sides of the issue. For the sake of this argument, I am going to support euthanasia. There are many views on euthanasia no matter what side you’re on. Ever since this practice has been legalized in the Netherlands, the question on Americans’ minds is ‘should euthanasia be legalized here in the U.S.?’ It may seem that the people who support euthanasia are few and far between, but there may be more than it seems. Many terminally ill individuals are members of the first party mentioned, the party that supports assisted suicide. Other supporters of this practice are generally the friends and family members of terminally ill human beings. To these people, euthanasia acts as a blessing, taking away their pain and suffering in a painless manner. Not only terminally ill people are supporters of this practice; some doctors are also beginning to understand the importance of euthanasia. As said by Dr. Christaan Barnard, “I believe that it is time to rethink many of our attitudes toward death and dying. I feel that society is ready to take a giant step towards a better understanding of the dignity of death and in the attainment of that dignity, if necessary, through the acceptance of euthanasia and suicide.” This is one example of how a doctor looks at the topic. He felt that he knew enough about the issue to write a book called “Good Life, Good Death.” According to Dr. Barnard, there are many ways to decide a
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2 person is dead. One view is that a person dies when his brain does. Once the brain dies, the other body organs aren’t needed anymore so eventually they all die. Therefore, proving that when someone’s brain dies, his or her whole body does die. Dr. Barnard believes that there are two kinds of euthanasia: active euthanasia, which is a direct form of dying, and passive euthanasia, which can be kind of gradual. For example, when you turn off a life support machine, the person it was attached to won’t die right away, but rather gradually, a little at a time (Barnard-7). Euthanasia is just another way to bring about death, so that maybe a person who is in a lot of pain won’t have to experience as painful a death as they would have if they had lived out their life and not gone through with assisted suicide. In some doctors’ eyes, they’re just doing their job by making the patient as comfortable as they can. Every day people are making the difficult decision to turn off a loved ones’ respirator and let them die. Believe it or not, this is a form of euthanasia. Although it’s not the most direct or active form, it is still helping someone to
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This note was uploaded on 04/02/2008 for the course PSYCH 102 taught by Professor Jared during the Spring '07 term at Rutgers.

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Euthanasia - 1 Intro to Logic 4 December 2006 The Issue:...

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