Active And Passive Euthanasia Analysis

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Applied Ethics

Explain and comment on James Rachels’ view that there is no moral difference between active and passive euthanasia. Do you agree with Rachels’ view?

Chung Hoi Yi, Mandy 10584907


Euthanasia (means ‘good death’) refers to “any action where a person is intentionally killed or allowed to die because it is believed that the individual would be better off dead than alive---- or else, as when one is in an irreversible coma, at least no worse off.”(M.Tooley)
Passive and Active euthanasia
Euthanasia as its name means is "serenity (or happy) to die". In euthanasia can be divided into both active and passive. The former (active euthanasia) is the avoidance of pain by taking life, while the latter (passive euthanasia) is to avoid the pain of the law, but allowed death occurred. Voluntary and involuntary euthanasia can be divided into two. Former is the voluntary death of patients, whether the latter. Deaths can be triggered by themselves or by others, which belongs to a suicide, while the latter was killed.
James Rachels’ view
James Rachels argues that it makes no moral difference whether death is caused by someone doing something to bring it about, or someone not doing anything to prevent its coming about. Causing death through inaction rather than action does not necessarily render you either morally or legally innocent of responsibility for that death. Passive euthanasia normally takes longer to bring about death than active euthanasia would have .If the patient is in pain and if the suffering is part of the reason for choosing euthanasia, then it is cruel and inconsistent to choose passive euthanasia which brings about more suffering than the active one.

Why Passive Euthanasia can be ...

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...ion, believing that this is the most compassionate decision. Forth is family with a heavy financial burden in addition to social and psychological burden, family members may have to shoulder a heavy financial burden. Serious illness can run out of their life savings in a very short time. These living tend to be survivors. Sometimes the disease can take the whole family-parenting or healthy and saving money for your family. Thus, euthanasia is mercy not only dying people, more compassion for those caring for patients-survivors. Fifth is to reduce social burden as medical costs rise, increase in the number of older persons in society, and the resources needed to take care of patients has also increased. That is why this is a moral thing to do.
To conclude, active euthanasia is a moral thing to do in order to release the pain of patients caused by diseases.

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