Over the decades, there has been continuing debate about ethics and euthanasia. Euthanasia is when someone is able to remain alive in a comma after following a severe injury. This impacts the body’s ability to perform the most basic functions without the assistance of various machines (i.e. feeding tubes and ventilators). However, euthanasia also focuses on those with a debilitating illness with no prognosis of survival. The conflicts emerge, in determining if killing them is humane and aligns with society’s most basic norms. Yet, at the same time, others will argue that allowing them to remain in this state is prolonging the agony the patient is experiencing. (Rollin, 2009) To determine the various points of views requires conducting a literature view from a host of sources. Together, these elements will illustrate the scope of the problems and the best ways to address these challenges.

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The article that was written by Rollin (2009) is looking at the long term effects of euthanasia and ethics by comparing animals with human beings. She determined that ethics will vary between racial groups, nationalities and specific regions. This means that attitudes on euthanasia will be different. Yet, they are similar, as these views are integrated to create workable standards for everyone to follow. This offers insights about the issues surrounding these practices and what is morally correct. (Rollin, 2009)

Van Norman is adding to these insights by looking at the long term effects of euthanasia on those who are suffering. She found that assisted suicide is acceptable in several different regions where society is conflicted about this role. The most notable include: Switzerland, Belgium, Denmark and select states in the US (i.e. Washington, Oregon and Montana). These ideas are challenging the beliefs that euthanasia is morally wrong as a way of ending suffering in terminally ill patients. (Van Norman, 2012)

The American Medical Association (AMA) determined that euthanasia is something doctors are conflicted with. From one perspective, they have to provide emotional support, comfort, communication, reducing pain, autonomy and respect for terminally ill patients. Euthanasia is something that aligns with these ideals, if they seek out the assistance of a physician in achieving these objectives. This creates controversy surrounding the moral obligations they have to follow from the AMA and supporting those who want to end their life without tremendous amounts of suffering. (“Euthanasia,” 1992)

Fraser (2000) is adding to these insights by looking at the contradictions which is exist in euthanasia. On one hand, there are laws against engaging in these kinds of actions. While at the same time, everyone has the right to freedom of choice and self determination. This means that those who are claiming assisted suicides are illegal is directly challenging these ideas. What Fraser determined, is that some kind of balance needs to be maintained throughout the process. This is designed to ensure a sense of stability between these conflicting interests. (Fraser, 2000)

Vodiga (1974) is adding to these insights by providing unique perspectives about euthanasia. This is achieved by focusing on several different questions throughout the process. The most notable include: 1) is euthanasia murder, 2) should steps be taken towards legalization and 3) is private regulation more effective. He determined that these questions need to focus on determining if someone is strong enough live healthy lives. In those situations, where the prognosis is bleak, family members and doctors must be given the flexibility to alleviate suffering. While at the same time, they need to be allowed to use modern medicine to reduce the severity of the patient’s injury. (Vodiga, 1974)

Outline
I. Introduction
II. Background
III. Arguments for Euthanasia
IV. Arguments Against Euthanasia
V. Arguments for Taking a Balanced Approach to these Issues
VI. Conclusion