Euthanasia Reconsidered: Why We Should Oppose the Legalization of Euthanasia
Euthanasia is a highly controversial moral issue that has been the subject of intense debate in recent years. While there is no universally accepted definition of euthanasia, it can be generally understood to refer to the deliberate ending of a life for the purposes of relieving suffering. The issue of euthanasia is further complicated by the fact that it can be carried out either with the individual’s consent or without it.
In her essay Euthanasia Reconsidered, Gail Deagle takes a firm stance against the legalization of euthanasia in Canada. She begins by outlining the different types of euthanasia before going on to discuss the positive and negative sides of the issue. Deagle ultimately concludes that the legalization of euthanasia would have far-reaching negative consequences for society as a whole and should therefore be opposed.
2. What is euthanasia?
There are two main types of euthanasia: active and passive. Active euthanasia involves deliberately taking steps to end a life, such as administering a lethal injection. Passive euthanasia, on the other hand, refers to withholding treatment or not providing medical care that would be necessary to keep someone alive.
It is important to note that passive euthanasia is currently legal in Canada, while active euthanasia is not. This means that doctors are allowed to withhold treatment from patients who are terminally ill and not expected to live, but they cannot administer a lethal injection or take any other action that would directly cause death.
The distinction between active and passive euthanasia is often seen as artificial and arbitrary, and there is significant debate over whether one should be considered morally acceptable while the other should not. However, Deagle argues that there is an important moral difference between the two:
“Withholding treatment is not generally considered to be morally objectionable because it allows nature to take its course. In contrast, active intervention to hasten death is generally considered to be morally wrong because it goes against nature.”
Deagle’s argument here rests on the idea that there is something natural about death and that we should not interfere with it. This is a common belief, but it is one that has been challenged by many philosophers who argue that there is nothing natural about death and that we have a duty to extend life as long as possible.
3. The positive and negative sides of euthanasia
There are both positive and negative sides to the issue of euthanasia. On the positive side, some argue that it can be an act of mercy to end the suffering of someone who is terminally ill and does not want to continue living. They also argue that individuals should have the right to decide for themselves when they want to die and that laws against euthanasia infringe on this right.
On the negative side, opponents of euthanasia argue that it is never acceptable to deliberately end a life, no matter how much suffering the individual may be experiencing. They also worry that legalizing euthanasia could lead to abuse, with vulnerable people being pressured into choosing death over life. Finally, they argue that allowing people to end their lives could have a negative impact on society’s attitude towards death and could lead us down a slippery slope towards accepting other forms of killing, such as murder.
4. Deagle’s position on euthanasia
Deagle is firmly opposed to the legalization of euthanasia. She believes that it is always wrong to deliberately end a life, regardless of the circumstances. She also shares the concern that vulnerable people could be pressured into choosing death if it were legal.
Deagle’s opposition to euthanasia is based on her belief that there is something natural about death and that we should not interfere with it. This belief is common, but it has been challenged by many philosophers.
Euthanasia is a highly controversial issue with both positive and negative sides. In her essay Euthanasia Reconsidered, Gail Deagle takes a firm stance against the legalization of euthanasia in Canada. She argues that it is always wrong to deliberately end a life, regardless of the circumstances. While her argument is based on a belief that there is something natural about death, this belief has been challenged by many philosophers.