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Essay on Is Euthanasia Morally Acceptable?

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Is it right to intentionally bring about the death of a person? The vast majority of people would instinctively answer this question “no,” unless it related to an act of war or perhaps self-defense. What if taking the life of the person would benefit that person by ending their suffering? Would it be morally acceptable to end their suffering? Questions like these are debated by those considering the morality of euthanasia, which is a very controversial topics in America. Euthanasia can be defined as “bringing about the death of another person to somehow benefit that person” (Pojman). The term implies that the death is intentional. Because there are several different types of euthanasia, it is difficult to make a blanket statement concerning the morality of euthanasia. This paper will discuss the particular morality of the passive and active forms of involuntary, nonvoluntary, and voluntary euthanasia. I believe that voluntary passive euthanasia is morally acceptable, while all other forms of euthanasia are ultimately immoral.
Before defining and discussing the three major categories of euthanasia, it is important to understand the meaning of their subtypes known as active euthanasia and passive euthanasia. Active euthanasia is performing a direct action to take someone’s life, such as administering a lethal drug to a patient. Passive euthanasia is allowing someone to die by not performing some life-sustaining action or ending life-sustaining treatment (Pojman). Examples of passive euthanasia would be removing a patient’s respirator or withholding nutrients and fluids. Active euthanasia is easily the more controversial of the two.
The first of the three types of euthanasia that I will be discussing is know...


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...a that I believe to be morally acceptable.





Works Cited

Brock, Dan W. "Voluntary Active Euthanasia." The Moral Life: An Introductory Reader in Ethics and Literature. By Louis P. Pojman and Lewis Vaughn. 4th ed. New York: Oxford UP, 2011. 823-44. Print.

Gay-Williams, J. "The Wrongfulness of Euthanasia." The Moral Life: An Introductory Reader in Ethics and Literature. By Louis P. Pojman and Lewis Vaughn. 4th ed. New York: Oxford UP, 2011. 845-51. Print.

Pojman, Louis P., and Lewis Vaughn. "The Morality of Euthanasia." Introduction. The Moral Life: An Introductory Reader in Ethics and Literature. 4th ed. New York: Oxford UP, 2011. 821-22. Print.

Rachels, James. "Active and Passive Euthanasia." The Moral Life: An Introductory Reader in Ethics and Literature. By Louis P. Pojman and Lewis Vaughn. 4th ed. New York: Oxford UP, 2011. 851-58. Print.


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