Euthanasia: An Ethical Dilemma Essay

1810 Words 8 Pages
The ethical debate regarding euthanasia dates back to ancient Greece and Rome. It was the Hippocratic School (c. 400B.C.) that eliminated the practice of euthanasia and assisted suicide from medical practice. Euthanasia in itself raises many ethical dilemmas – such as, is it ethical for a doctor to assist a terminally ill patient in ending his life? Under what circumstances, if any, is euthanasia considered ethically appropriate for a doctor? More so, euthanasia raises the argument of the different ideas that people have about the value of the human experience.
Philosopher, Ezekial Emanuel, asserts that the ethical belief in the 19th and 20th century in the United States are reminiscent of those today, both in terms of content and
…show more content…
In 1997, the United States Supreme Court ruled in a landmark case that, although there was no constitutionally protected right to physician-assisted suicide, states have passed laws allowing it; therefore, the ethical issue of euthanasia remains open to philosophical, political, legal, and ethical challenges.
The lack of consensus in American society on the ethical question of euthanasia may be attributed to the complexity and gravity of the issue. This study will discuss and explore the question of under what circumstance is euthanasia considered ethically appropriate? As such, this study will examine the ethics of euthanasia from three different ethically perspectives: (1) the doctor, (2) the assisting non-doctor (i.e. Nurse or family) and (3) the patient who requests/consents.
Therefore, it is goal of this author to invite you to study the ethical questions related to the modern issue of euthanasia. This study addressed (1) in detail the history of euthanasia and its significance in society, (2) the legal cases of the topic, (3) the contemporary thoughts, and (4) the thoughts of Plato, Aristotle, and Aquinas. The author has attempted to present the basic
Open Document