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Euthanasia: Not Morally Acceptable

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Abstract In the following essay, I argue that euthanasia is not morally acceptable because it always involves killing, and undermines intrinsic value of human being. The moral basis on which euthanasia defends its position is contradictory and arbitrary in that its moral values represented in such terms as ‘mercy killing’, ‘dying with dignity’, ‘good death’ and ‘right for self-determination’ fail to justify taking one’s life. Introduction Among other moral issues, euthanasia emerged with modern medical advancement, which allows us ever more control over not only our life but also death. Euthanasia is an especially sensitive issue because it deals with the death and the killing of a person. In this paper, I argue that euthanasia is wrong by responding to the claims implied in other terms which euthanasia is expressed exchangeably and understood by and large; ‘mercy killing’, ‘dying with dignity’, ‘good death’, and ‘doctor assisted suicide’. Mercy killing The term of ‘mercy killing’ sounds very contradictory. Mercy, by definition, is a kind or forgiving attitude toward somebody that you have the power to harm or right to punish. As a trait exhibited by generous people, mercy is considered to be a virtue which we ought to pursue. On the other hand, killing, taking the life of other or oneself, is thought to be almost always wrong, and is condemned universally in most cases. In ‘mercy killing’, one exercises the quality of mercy by killing another person. In other word, killing is an expected consequence to achieve good cause of mercy. In addition, it is usually a doctor who is in a position of granting mercy upon a patient by treating the disease or wound. Judging from the analysis of the term, ‘mercy killing’ assumes... ... middle of paper ... ...qually wrong. Conclusion ‘Mercy’, ‘dignity’, ‘good’ and ‘self-determination’ are the moral basis that the advocates for euthanasia defend. How appealing they sound, their accounts are simply an attempt to escape from dying process, through which we still hold our existence. The argument of pro-euthanasia might suggest that we are able to control over our life and death without moral conflict because such values related to euthanasia can justify the action of killing. By contrast, I argue that euthanasia is fundamentally wrong because it involves killing. It arbitrarily takes life and denies natural dying process. Therefore, euthanasia violates the belief that human being has intrinsic value until arriving at death. In practical term, we have no right over our death, as over birth itself. Our right for choice is only available between birth and death.
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