The Pros And Cons Of Euthanasia

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Argument Against Euthanasia To make things clear from the start, I am against euthanasia, but for the purpose of this assignment, I will be examining an argument from Philippa Foot’s Euthanasia. I would like to argue the issue of physician culpability in active euthanasia versus passive euthanasia. Active euthanasia can be thought of as any immediate action that is carried out in such a way as to terminate a person’s life; this can range from a murderer who shoots a victim on one end, to a doctor who gives a patient a lethal dosage of medicine on the other. Passive euthanasia consists of the non-procurement or removal of any measures that are not designed to either extend a person’s life. Both bring about the person’s death in a “natural”…show more content…
It is not clear what a doctor 's duties are to his patient if life can be prolonged only at the cost of suffering or suffering relieved only by measures that shorten life.” (20) The sentences above this in Foot’s paper explain that firemen’s and bodyguards’ duties consist of logically saving as many lives as possible, however, doctors seem to be short changed in this respect. That being said, a doctor’s duty is to preserve life and relieve suffering to the best of his ability. In my personal opinion, it is paramount for doctors do all in their power to preserve life and to alleviate suffering. If both of these criteria cannot be met, then keeping the patient alive should be the top priority. I strongly agree with Foot that the patient has a right to life, protected under the first amendment; and the right of non-interference. If the decision over euthanasia must be made, be it passive euthanasia or physician assisted suicide, it should never be negatively reflected on the doctor, as long as he acted according to the desire that the patient, or the primary decision maker. For example, someone’s grandfather lies in the hospital, and his family has him sign a DNR, his heart stops, and he is not resuscitated. In my opinion this is not euthanasia, but for this paper, it must defined as passive euthanasia, because there was a chance that he could have been revived. The point where I disagree the most with Foot is about a doctor’s duty: I believe a doctor’s duty is only to administer care, keeping the patient alive and well to their best of his or her ability. In order for a doctor to be certified, he or she must take the Hippocratic Oath, one of the components being, “first do no harm.” I believe it is never a doctor’s right to decide for a patient to live or die. The doctor should always ask the

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