The Controversy and Ethical Debate Surrounding Euthanasia Essay

The Controversy and Ethical Debate Surrounding Euthanasia Essay

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Dax Cowart was hospitalized after a gas explosion engulfed his car because he suffered stern burns. He was “burned so severely and [was] in so much pain that [he] did not want to live even the early moments following the explosion.” He repeatedly asked his doctors and family to end his agony. Dianne Pretty had a motor neuron disease that instigates a painful death. She wanted to have “a quick death without suffering, at home surrounded by [her] family.” 85-year old Mary Ormerod was starved of nutrients after she went into a coma. Her doctor and daughter made the decision to end her torment, however the doctor got suspended in doing so (BBC).
These and many other cases have occurred in medical history, and many more are bound to occur. This ending of the anguish is called euthanasia. In order for the ethical concerns of the issue to be discussed, euthanasia needs to be defined, and the different classes of it understood. The discussion itself has to be based on a method of reasoning and logic. One of the sources of ethical rationale, and probably the major method of reasoning in some parts of the world, is religion. Different religions differ in their view of euthanasia, some share similarities while others differ completely.
According to the book titled “Euthanasia: a Reference Handbook” by McDougall and Gorman, the Merriam Webster dictionary defines euthanasia as “ an easy death or mercy killing.” Suicide is also defined as “the act of killing oneself purposely” (McDougall, Gorman and Roberts). Thus, physician Assisted suicide is the act of taking one’s life with the aid of a doctor (McDougall, Gorman and Roberts). Euthanasia is a very disputable matter, some regard it as a human right while others deem it unethical. One of t...


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...ews of euthanasia. Following this similarity in views, can a global ethical law be formed? To answer this question further investigation into the viewpoint of these three religions on other ethical issues is required.


Works Cited

Alters, Sandra. Death and Dying: End-of-Life Controversies. Detroit: Gale, Cengage Learning, 2009.
Athar, Shahid and Hossam E. Fadel. ISLAMIC MEDICAL ETHICS: The IMANA Perspective. n.d.
BBC. BBC. 4 april 2011 .
Betzold, Michel (1993). Appointment with Doctor Death. Troy, MI: Momentum Books.
McDougall, Jennifer Fecio, Martha Gorman and Carolyn S. Roberts. Euthanasia: a Reference Handbook. Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO, 2008.
Novak, David. The Sanctity Of Human Life. Washington D.C.: Georgetown UP, 2007.
Sachdina, Abdulaziz Abdulhussein. Islamic Biomedical Ethics: Principles and Application. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2009.

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