Euthanasia, a Sociological View

3060 Words Jun 5th, 2007 13 Pages
The Euthanasia Debate,
Related To
The Thomas Theorem

Topic: Euthanasia related to the Thomas Theorem
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In The Unadjusted Girl W.I.Thomas wrote, "Preliminary to any self-determined act of behavior there is always a stage of examination and deliberation which we may call the definition of the situation. And actually not only concrete acts are dependent on the definition of the situation, but gradually a whole life-policy and the personality of the individual himself follow from a series of such definitions." (University of Missouri St Louis web site. W. I. Thomas – Definition of the Situation.)

Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary defines euthanasia as
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He also states that physician assisted suicide is legal only in the State of Oregon and in the Netherlands. ( Religious Tolerance.Org web site) A CNN site states that Netherlands laws still treat physician assisted suicide as a criminal act, but if certain criteria are met, the State will not prosecute. (CNN web site, Dutch euthanasia law - what's involved, November 28, 2000)

The debate between the two sides of the argument is dependent on words and their definitions. "If thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought." George Orwell (Quoted on International Task Force on Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide web site.)

Rita L. Marker and Wesley J. Smith of the International Task Force on Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide address the semantics issue. The Task Force position is that familiar words and terminology are being twisted and misinterpreted by euthanasia supporters to alter perceived reality to their ends. For example, a straightforward statement like, "If I'm terminally ill, the only medical treatment I want is comfort care," could be seen as a request to die, even if the person has a good chance of living months if not years. "Terminally ill" has been used as a reason to euthanize, and "comfort care" has been defined as the means of inducing death.

We normally would not consider administering carbon monoxide as a ‘procedure' in a ‘heroic effort'
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