Physician-Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia in the Modern World

Satisfactory Essays
Euthanasia and the Modern World

A long time ago, culture was universal and permanent. There was one set

of beliefs, ideals, and norms, and these were the standard for all human beings

in all places and all times. We, however, live in the modern world. Our ethics

are not an inheritance of the past, completed and ready for universal

application. We are in the situation of having to form our own beliefs and

meanings of life. This struggle is now obvious in the contemporary discussions

of euthanasia.

Of the controversial discussions involving euthanasia, the question of

legalization is an often argued one. Whether euthanasia ought to be illegal is

different from the question of whether it is immoral. Some people believe that

even if euthanasia is immoral, it still should not be prohibited by law, since

if a patient wants to die, that is strictly a personal affair, regardless of how

foolish or immoral the desire might be. [Rachels, 56] My position is almost

identical. I believe there are some instances in which euthanasia is immoral,

but I believe it should unquestionably be legal. In the following paragraphs, I

will display the position of the opposition to the legality of euthanasia as

well as the position of the supporters. I shall attempt to prove that, yes,

euthanasia should be legal. There is a strong opposition against the

legalization of euthanasia. The main argument against the legality of

euthanasia is sometimes known as the slippery slope argument. People argue that

if euthanasia was legally permitted, it would lead to a general decline in the

respect for human life. It is professed that we would kill people in the

beginning simply to put them out of extreme agony. This is the ideal. But the

opposition states that the killing of people wouldn't stop here. The killing

could perhaps escalate to mass murder of innocent victims. When would the

killing stop? This is what scares the opponent. The opponents argue that once

something is accepted, we have no right to deny other similar practices. This

is when doctors and patients would start taking advantage of the new law.

Therefore, the first step should not be taken.

I disagree with this notion and believe that there would hardly be any
Get Access