Talk:Euthanasia

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A Philosophical View[edit]

In my opinion, while it is important to discuss the religious views, laws, and other such topics about Euthanasia, it is also important to take a look at the idea from a philosophical view. To begin, the discussion about whether or not Euthanasia is "right or wrong" there needs to be a discussion about how past philosophers view this pressing issue. There are many different moral theories in which one can view the idea of Euthanasia by. Three major views would be that of Utilitarianism, Kant's theory, and the theory of natural law.

First, Utilitarian’s have two different views on Euthanasia with itself. Utilitarian’s believe the morally correct action is the one that fabricates the most happiness and good over evil for all parties[1]. There are also two sub categories of utilitarian’s, act-utilitarianism and rule-utilitarianism. Act-utilitarianism declares that correct actions are ones that directly create overall good, and Rule-utilitarianism says that morally correct actions are covered by a rule that if followed will create overall good.[2]. Therefore, Act-utilitarian’s would tend to focus more on exactly how much happiness would come out of the decisions being made. The decision to kill a patient would depend of their current health status. If one is greatly suffering then it would be in the patients best interest to end their life, thus creating happiness for not only the patient that was suffering but also their family that had to watch them suffer. However, the idea of killing someone also contradicts the ideas of act-utilitarian’s because while taking the patient out of suffering thus creating happiness, killing that person would no longer allow for that person to receive the feeling of happiness. When it comes the rule-utilitarian views, they tend to be against the idea of euthanasia. They believe that allowing euthanasia to be a law would cause problems. Allowing such a law to pass would eventually become an issue due to the fact that it would become abused. It would essentially down play the idea of killing. It would also defeat the general purpose of a doctor. Overall a doctor is suppose to make one health, however, with physician-assisted suicide a doctor would be basically doing the exact opposite.

Second, Kantian theorists focus more one what is morally right when it come to the categorical imperative. The categorical imperative is an important view that we should follow despite our own views[3]. Kantians could have different theories on euthanasia as well. Once of Kant’s views of euthanasia would be that it should not be permitted due to the fact that it would suggest that humans could be considered disposable in a sense. If a consenting active human being knowingly requests to be killed it is in direct violation with the idea that everyone should always strive to greatness and not dwell on personal desires or views. However, Kantian theorists could argue that if a patient is no longer responsive and is in a vegetative state or coma and can no longer make decision for themselves that euthanasia would be okay. This is because Kant believes that humans have natural significance and poise and once a human has transferred into the vegetated state they no longer have any significance.

Lastly, the theory of natural law depicts that in general, everything about euthanasia is wrong. Natural law theory states that the morally right act is the one that most closely follows the path of nature[4].. Natural law theorists believe that the natural world already has a natural order, place, and purpose for every aspect of life. To natural law theorists performing any type of procedure that disrupts the natural flow of the world in morally wrong. Euthanasia to them is the direct opposite of preserving life, which is precisely what natural law believes in. Overall euthanasia would not be permitted if it were up to someone that practices natural law because it is in now way natural.

I strongly believe there should be a section in which these topics are discussed. Rather than focusing strictly on laws that we have today, we can see how past important philosophers viewed what is morally correct and incorrect about euthanasia. Feel free to comment on anything!


Much as I can see some sense in this, the philosophical analyses could be very extensive. On balance, I would favour including them (I've at least added a link to a good article from the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy). However, we also have to remember that the word has other uses not limited to philosophy. I recently drew attention to the fact that the very word "euthanasia" and its subdivisions as listed in the Wiki article, which derive broadly from mainstream bioethics, have no place in the legislative framework the practice of the country most associated with euthanasia: the Netherlands. There, both the medical and legal establishments have different ways of categorising what they do and can be done in practice.Parzivalamfortas (talk) 20:11, 25 May 2014 (UTC)

  1. ^ Vaughn, Lewis (2013). Doing Ethics. 500 fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10110-0017: W. W. Norton & Company, Inc. p. 69. 
  2. ^ Vaughn, Lewis (2013). Doing Ethics. 500 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10110-0017: W. W. Norton & Company, Inc. p. 70. 
  3. ^ Vaughn, Lewis (2013). Doing Ethics. 500 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10110-0017: W. W. Norton & Company, Inc. p. 70. 
  4. ^ Vaughn, Lewis (2013). Doing Ethics. 500 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10110-0017: W. W. Norton & Company, Inc. p. 71. 

Semi-protected edit request on 23 November 2014[edit]

Estonia must be removed from the article for Estonia has not legalised euthanasia nor assisted suicide. 90.191.201.98 (talk) 23:08, 23 November 2014 (UTC)

Do you have any evidence of that? Present sources seem to indicate that it is legal. The Banner talk 23:39, 23 November 2014 (UTC)
Red information icon with gradient background.svg Not done: please provide reliable sources that support the change you want to be made. — {{U|Technical 13}} (etc) 02:14, 24 November 2014 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 29 December 2014[edit]

In the section describing involuntary euthanasia (A) below,

Involuntary euthanasia Main article: Involuntary euthanasia Euthanasia conducted against the will of the patient is termed involuntary euthanasia.

please change the definition to "Involuntary euthanasia occurs when euthanasia is performed on a person who is able to provide informed consent, but does not, either because they do not choose to die, or because they were not asked." because the current wording is misleading and my suggestion is taken directly from the main page for involuntary euthanasia. The source would be: Jackson, Jennifer (2006). Ethics in medicine. Polity. p. 137. ISBN 0-7456-2569-X.

Thank you!

24.189.16.181 (talk) 14:26, 30 December 2014 (UTC)

X mark.svg Not done: Wikipedia cannot use text lifted directly from other sources. G S Palmer (talkcontribs) 16:00, 30 December 2014 (UTC)
Hi User:G S Palmer. I wasn't the anon who requested this. But a short quote, as requested, would be acceptable. See: Wikipedia:Non-free content#Text. Thanks. HG | Talk 15:11, 31 December 2014 (UTC)