There are a multitude of arguments both for and against the ethical application of physician assisted suicide also known as PAS. The ethical dilemma of PAS is considered as heated and varied as the debate over abortion because they both discuss the issue of lowering the worth of human life. However, many individuals argue that it is ethically acceptable for terminally ill patients who do not wish to be burdened with a painful and prolonged death. Despite the fact that, the Hippocratic Oath alludes to the prohibition of physicians ending a life, as stated here,“...it may also be within my power to take a life; this awesome responsibility must be faced with great humbleness and awareness of my own frailty. Above all, I must not play at God”(), it can be argued that PAS is not ending a life, but merely quickening what is already going to occur. However, most arguments that define PAS as ethically correct rely upon undefinitive and changing opinions about individual rights, the slippery slope that allowing medically assisted suicide could lead to, and the patient 's mental and emotional competence to make this decision clearly, especially when faced the looming thought of a painful and choiceless future.
To this end, in WASHINGTON PETITIONERS v. HAROLD GLUCKSBERG it was stated that, “the history of the law 's treatment of assisted suicide in this country has been and continues to be one of the rejection of nearly all efforts to permit it. That being the case, our decisions lead us to conclude that the asserted 'right ' to assistance in committing suicide is not a fundamental liberty interest protected by the Due Process Clause"(II, WASHINGTON, et al., PETITIONERS v. HAROLD GLUCKSBERG ...
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...the duration of their life, to choose for themselves what they want to do next. Any other course is to deny an individual the right to choose simply based on the fact that it is considered taboo, to not allow a patient the right to choose is to take away their final shred of personal dignity and free will. Lacking either, not only will the whole founding of the U.S.A be called into question, the free will described in Catholicism will be spit upon, and become meaningless. Almost every single terminally ill individual wants two things, to have a choice, and to be remembered as they are now, not as they will function/appear after a few more ravaging months of illness or disease. Overall, why should a dying human being be made to suffer just for the comfort of others? Does denying someone their right to death not therefore diminish their basic right to life as well?
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