Chapter

Choice, assisted suicide and euthanasia

Fiona Randall and R. S. Downie

in End of Life Choices

Published in print October 2009 | ISBN: 9780199547333
Published online November 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191730405 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199547333.003.0010
Choice, assisted suicide and euthanasia

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This chapter criticizes three common arguments in favour of assisted suicide and voluntary euthanasia. These are the argument from moral equivalence in its various forms, the argument from the right to die, and the argument from human dignity. The strongest arguments in favour of the legalization of assisted suicide and voluntary euthanasia are based on a claim of unbearable suffering or a desire to control one's life and one's death while the strongest argument against it are the likely weakening of the prohibition against killing and the pressure on the sick to end their lives so as not to be a burden on others.

Keywords: assisted suicide; voluntary euthanasia; moral equivalence; right to die; human dignity; legalization; suffering

Chapter.  8794 words. 

Subjects: Palliative Medicine

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