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Name: Instructor’s Name: Course Name: October 19th 2012 Euthanasia Euthanasia can be defined as the bringing about the death of a being for humane reasons, or as the killing of a person with the intent of ending his or her suffering. There are two main types of euthanasia: passive euthanasia, which is legal in the United States, and active euthanasia, which is considered illegal, but it is still practiced by some physicians.
The American Medical Association embraces the belief that active euthanasia is not acceptable due to the involvement of the intentional ending of a patient’s life by another human being. Many current thinkers have argued for and against this view discussing the moral acceptability of such an action, and some of the most notable arguments come from James Rachels. Rachels states that a strong case can be made against the American Medical Association’s doctrine. His main point is that passive euthanasia is not always preferable to active euthanasia: he states that, in some cases, there is simply no moral disparity linking active euthanasia and passive euthanasia. This is because they both are morally equivalent concerning the ultimate goal; however, it is factual that active euthanasia may be fair compared to passive euthanasia. He says that once the choice has been made not to prolong the patient’s agony, active euthanasia would be preferable because the latter would lead to an unnecessary period of suffering (Dixon 25). ...
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