Human Rights and Euthanasia Arguments

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Overview of arguments in favour of euthanasia

Arguments in favour of euthanasia can be broken down into a few main categories: Arguments based on rights

* People have an explicit right to die
* A separate right to die is not necessary, because our other human rights imply the right to die * Death is a private matter and if there is no harm to others, the state and other people have no right to interfere (a libertarian argument)

Practical arguments

* It is possible to regulate euthanasia
* Death is a private matter and if there is no harm to others, the state and other people have no right to interfere (a libertarian argument) * Allowing people to die may free up scarce health resources (this is a possible argument, but no authority has seriously proposed it) * Euthanasia happens anyway (a utilitarian or consequentialist argument)

Philosophical arguments

* Euthanasia satisfies the criterion that moral rules must be universalisable * Euthanasia happens anyway (a utilitarian or consequentialist argument) * Is death a bad thing?

Arguments about death itself

* Is death a bad thing?

Regulating euthanasia

Those in favour of euthanasia think that there is no reason why euthanasia can't be controlled by proper regulation, but they acknowledge that some problems will remain.

For example, it will be difficult to deal with people who want to implement euthanasia for selfish reasons or pressurise vulnerable patients into dying.

This is little different from the position with any crime. The law prohibits theft, but that doesn't stop bad people stealing things.
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