Keckler, University of New Mexico, finding a clear deterrent in the death penalty for those who murder and do not fear prison. The Case of Illinois," by Dale O. It is found that these actions are coincident with the increased risk of homicide incurred by the residents of Illinois over the 48 month post-event period for which data were available.
ERGO circulates on a regular basis an electronic newslist with news from around the world. Today, 'euthanasia' is generally understood to mean the bringing about of a good death - 'mercy killing,' where one person, A, ends the life of another person, B, for the sake of B.
This understanding of euthanasia emphasizes two important features of acts of euthanasia. First, that euthanasia involves the deliberate taking of a person's life; and, second, that life is taken for the sake of the person whose life it is - typically because she or he is suffering from an incurable or terminal disease.
This distinguishes euthanasia from most other forms of taking life.
Every society known to us subscribes to some principle or principles prohibiting the taking of life. But there are great variations between cultural traditions as to when the taking of life is considered wrong. If we turn to the roots of our Western tradition, we find that in Greek and Roman times such practices as infanticide, suicide and euthanasia were widely accepted.
Most historians of Western morals agree that Judaism and the rise of Christianity contributed greatly to the general feeling that human life has sanctity and must not deliberately be taken.
To take an innocent human life is, in these traditions, to usurp the right of God to give and take life.
It has also been seen by influential Christian writers as a violation of natural law. This view of the absolute inviolability of innocent human life remained virtually unchallenged until the sixteenth century when Sir Thomas More published his Utopia.
In this book, More portrays euthanasia for the desperately ill as one of the important institutions of an imaginary ideal community.
In subsequent centuries, British philosophers notably David Hume, Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill challenged the religious basis of morality and the absolute prohibition of suicide, euthanasia and infanticide.
The great eighteenth-century German philosopher Immanuel Kant, on the other hand, whilst believing that moral truths were founded on reason rather than religion, nonetheless thought that 'man cannot have, the power to dispose of his life' Kant,p. Mercy for a hopelessly ill and suffering patient and, in the case of voluntary euthanasia, respect for autonomy, have been the primary reasons given by those who have argued for the moral permissibility of euthanasia.
Today, there is widespread popular support for some forms of euthanasia and many contemporary philosophers have argued that euthanasia is morally defensible.
Official religious opposition for example, from the Roman Catholic Church does, however, remain unchanged, and active euthanasia remains a crime in every nation other than the Netherlands.
There, a series of court cases, beginning inhave established the conditions under which doctors, and only doctors, may practise euthanasia: Before looking more closely at the arguments for and against euthanasia, it will be necessary to draw some distinctions.
Euthanasia can take three forms: Voluntary, non-voluntary and involuntary euthanasia The following case is an example of voluntary euthanasia: She had reached the stage where she was almost totally paralysed and, - periodically, needed a respirator to keep her alive.
She was suffering considerable distress. Knowing that there was no hope and that things would get worse.EUTHANASIA FACTS.
THE BASICS. Euthanasia Definitions (PowerPoint File). Quick List: Euthanasia Pros and Cons. Arguments Against Euthanasia (PowerPoint File). Reasons for Euthanasia (PowerPoint File). Quotations on Euthanasia (PowerPoint File). History of Euthanasia (PowerPoint File) History of Assisted Suicide in England and the US (13th through 20th Century).
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