Suicide and Euthanasia1

Suicide and Euthanasia1 - Suicide and Euthanasia three...

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Suicide and Euthanasia three important issues are involved in the right to die debate Suicide - intentional taking of one’s own life - not currently illegal but assisting a suicide is illegal in all states except Oregon . Euthanasia - assisting a person commit suicide - includes a range of activities from withholding treatment through to actively killing another person (passive versus active euthanasia). The latter is sometimes referred to as ”mercy killing” . Right to Refuse Treatment - patient refuses to allow medical staff to administer life extending treatment. - legal in all states. Some debate over whether this is truly suicide. although these appear as fairly clear cut distinctions, they overlap a great deal in practice and much of the debate centers on whether euthanasia should be allowed. the real issue for this course is whether suicide and euthanasia can be considered victimless crimes and we need to examine several important issues in answering this question. Why do People Commit Suicide? several different explanations have been offered to explain why individuals either commit or attempt suicide Psychological Disorders some researchers argue that psychological depression is implicated in many completed and attempted suicides - 3 basic forms of evidence support this contention 15% of persons diagnosed with depression ultimately commit suicide. 30 to 60% of all suicides suffer from treatable mental illness a large percentage of attempted suicides are clinically depressed in this category, attempted and completed suicides would be explained in the same fashion regardless of whether the person actually intended to succeed. Bio-Physical Explanations of Suicide 1
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several studies have found a link between levels of bio-chemical neurotransmitters in the spinal fluid and suicide other studies have found a genetic link (like homosexuality, it “runs in families”) however sociologists argue that these causes are mediated by the social environment and that prevention programs aimed at certain target groups might be effective at preventing suicides Social-Psychological Explanations of Suicide
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This note was uploaded on 02/02/2012 for the course SOC 410 taught by Professor Nicklarsen during the Fall '11 term at Chapman University .

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Suicide and Euthanasia1 - Suicide and Euthanasia three...

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