Moral Politics

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorCollege, Undergraduate November 2001

download word file, 19 pages 0.0

Euthanasia In the year 1999, Dr. Jack Kevorkian was sentenced to about twenty years for second-degree murder. He was guilty because he had administered euthanasia to a terminally ill patient. Many people were outraged. How could a doctor like Dr. Kevorkian be equated with a hardened criminal? The idea of euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide is extremely controversial. My initial position on euthanasia is pretty simple. Doctors should not be involved in terminating anyone's life. Their function is to restore health, not destroy it. Doctors should not be involved in mercy killing since than seems antithetical to the mission of doctors. According to the Hippocratic Oath, doctors are to do everything in their control to save the patient's life. Doctors in a society such as ours, should hold life as sacred.

But the advocates of euthanasia might argue that the people who would want euthanasia or physician-assisted suicide, are those suffering from terminal illnesses.

In response, I would argue that the doctor should do everything that he can do to relieve the pain of the patients, short of euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide. In order to relieve the pain of the patient, it is not necessary to end the life of such a patient. Alternatives are available in terms of drugs like morphine, and marijuana.

So it is logically possible to relieve the pain of the terminally ill patient without using euthanasia or physician-assisted suicide. Doctors can relieve pain, whiteout violating their oath to preserving life.

Society must be for life. Further, I heard that in the Netherlands, euthanasia is being used for people who are just plain old. This is troubling. The practice of euthanasia leads to the idea that society should abandon those, whose functions to society are diminished. This is disturbing. Hitler supported the idea of suicide for those...