'Life Should Always Be Saved' Discuss in Relation to Euthanasia.

Topics: Euthanasia, Death, Roman Catholic Church Pages: 7 (2732 words) Published: February 18, 2013
‘Life should always be saved’. Discuss in relation to the topic you have been studying. Euthanasia is derived from Greek, it means ‘pleasant death’. It refers to the termination of a person’s life for their own good, usually to relieve them of their suffering. It usually occurs if that person has an incurable condition that prevents them from carrying out day to day activities. There are many types of Euthanasia such as active, passive, voluntary etc that abide amongst many rules that differ depending on where it is. In the UK, euthanasia is completely illegal. Anyone who is found to be assisting a suicide is to be break the law and can be convicted. Between 2003 and 2006, Lord Joffe attempted to legalize voluntary euthanasia however all were rejected by the UK Parliament. In other places around the world the laws on euthanasia differ depending on the situation and the area in which it is. There are different forms and types of euthanasia, the main for being voluntary, involuntary, active and passive euthanasia. Voluntary euthanasia is that which is conducted with the consent of the patient. It tends to involve the help of another person and therefore can be considered as assisted suicide. An example of voluntary euthanasia is when a person is in a persistent vegetative state but still has control over their mind and can make the decision on whether or not they want to continue their life. Dianne Pretty would be a case study that revolves around voluntary euthanasia. Dianne Pretty suffered from motor neurone disease that left her paralysed from the neck down. Mrs Pretty was in need of 24- hour care and faced an unpleasant death. Unable to end her own life, she wanted her husband to help her die without being prosecuted. Dianne’s case would be an example of voluntary euthanasia as it involves the assistance of her husband. Most Christians would say that she has the intrinsic value of every other person and therefore has the same life worth even if the quality of it is not great. Roman Catholics would completely disagree with the admittance of euthanasia in this case as they strongly believe in the Sanctity of Life, and with the assistance of her husband to bring about her death it would be going against this principle. However, liberalists and autonomists would argue that Dianne should be allowed to kill herself as it is her own choice and she is in the right state of mind to make that choice. Involuntary euthanasia is that which is conducted against the will of the patient. It is commonly used when the patient is in a long term vegetative state and do not show any signs of ever regaining consciousness. An example of involuntary euthanasia is when a patient would be in a coma, they cannot commune on what decision they personally want but their life depends on mainly what the doctor recommends but this can be influenced by family members. Mary Ormeod suffered from a series of strokes and was the only thing keeping her alive was the force feeding through the syringe. Mary’s doctor and daughters left her to starve to death in a nursing home. They had taken a conscious decision to withhold a nutritional supplement called Fresubin from the 85-year old after she ceased to communicate with the outside world. She weighed less than four stone when she died in August 1995. Mary Ormeod’s case is an example of passive euthanasia; it is not actively killing her, but withdrawing a medical supplement that is keeping her alive. It is also an example of involuntary euthanasia as Mary did not have a say in the matter as she could not commune, however the decision was made by the doctor and the family. Many Christians and Roman Catholics would agree that it would be right for Mary to have died this way as keeping her alive would be intervening with God’s natural plans. Although some Christians may argue that although she lost the ability to communicate with the outside world and was kept alive through nothing but a syringe and...
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