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1. What is euthanasia? And what is the difference between active and passive euthanasia? Finally, give a description of Rachels’ bathtub example in your own words, and explain why he thinks it shows that active and passive euthanasia are morally equivalent.
Euthanasia is defined in Merriam- Webster as the act or practice of killing or permitting the death of hopelessly sick or injured individuals (such as persons or domestic animals) in a relatively painless way for reasons of mercy (Merriam-Webster). Active euthanasia is the act of doing something to ends one life, such as lethal injection or lethal medications in order to render death (White). Passive euthanasia occurs when nothing is done to sustain one’s life, such as the act of not using life support or medical technology for an individual to continue living.
James Rachel’s bathtub example lists two cases where an individual family member is in line to inherit a large inheritance when the time comes for a young cousin to pass away. In the first case, the potential beneficiary sneaks in the bathroom and kills the cousin while he is taking a bath, and the beneficiary proceeds to make the scene look like it was an accident once the murder is complete. In a second case, the beneficiary sneaks into the bathroom, but at the same time, the cousin appears and slips and hits his head. The cousin falls in the tub and proceeds to drown on his own, and the beneficiary lets him drown with no attempt to render aid or move to save the cousins life. The main difference between both scenarios is one directly involves killing someone, and the other involves letting one die with no first aid attempted to save one’s life in order to achieve personal gain after the victim dies.

References
Merriam-Webster. “Euthanasia.”. 2012 August 2018. Internet.
White, James E. Contemporary Moral Problems. Clark Baxter, 2006.

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2. Why does Steinbock believe that the AMA doesn’t make the distinction between active and passive euthanasia? What distinction does she think it uses instead? And how does she justify the cessation of extraordinary treatment?
Steinbock is of the belief that Rachels is incorrect in his statement regarding the AMA and that the doctrine identifies a distinction between active and passive euthanasia. Rachels goes on to state that a common mistake in medical ethics is that there is a moral difference between active and passive euthanasia, and there is a moral difference between intentionally killing and letting someone die (White). The doctrine accepted by the AMA states that taking direct action to kill a patient is wrong, although withholding treatment to allow a patient to die is acceptable, especially if a quick and painless death is preferable to suffering (White). Steinbock believes the AMA statement rejects both active and passive euthanasia and does not make any distinction between active and passive euthanasia. Steinbock also states that the AMA doctrine appeals to a number of standard or overlapping distinctions when it comes to passive and active euthanasia. Her interpretation is that it makes a distinction between ordinary and extraordinary means of treatment. Her statement is based on the patient’s given right to refuse treatment and does not consider that the patient has a right to die. The AMA statement does allow for stopping the extraordinary means of treatment if that patient has granted the instructions to do so or if death is imminent, and suffering is involved. Steinbock believes that the stopping of the extraordinary means of medical treatment by the patient’s instruction goes on to imply that it is an act of active euthanasia.
References
White, James E. Contemporary Moral Problems. Clark Baxter, 2006.

3. How does Brock justify voluntary active euthanasia? What restrictions would he place on it? And what does he think would be the consequences of permitting it?
Brock states that there are some solid reasons to permit the act of voluntary active euthanasia. He is of the belief that there are not any legitimate or compelling arguments against permitting it, primarily if it is tightly regulated. Brock uses to ethical reasons to support his argument on voluntary active euthanasia. His first argument is that humans should have the right to determine their idea of what a good life consists of. His second argument is that any decisions made about others should be strictly focused on what is best for that person’s current situation or well-being. Any interference in that person’s decision making must have a solid basis, such as the person may not be in the correct state of mind in which they can make decisions for themselves. Making voluntary active euthanasia available to the public (legally) would reassure everyone that they have complete control of their well-being during terminal illness and other factors that may affect one’s quality of life. A possible negative consequence would be the allowing of physicians to perform euthanasia. Many believe that euthanasia goes against a doctor’s moral code of doing everything to take care of patients and work to improve the life of the sick. Another argument against is what if the physician performed euthanasia without the consent of the patient? Would that be considered murder? Brock states that active euthanasia should be allowed, but with specific rules and regulations in order to prevent the drifting into the state of non-voluntary euthanasia. All situations should be evaluated on a case by case basis, and one must work to ensure all alternative avenues for the patient have been explored before active euthanasia. Brock goes on to state that allowing physicians to perform euthanasia responsibly is the most appropriate method (White).
References
White, James E. Contemporary Moral Problems. Clark Baxter, 2006.

4. What is Hardwig’s “duty to die?” Under what sorts of circumstances does he think this idea would come into play? And what does he think would be its effects?
The theory for Hardwig’s “duty to die” refers to the duty of ending one’s life, even in the absence of terminal illness even if the individual would still want to live. Hardwig’s reasoning is at times the burden of providing care becomes too difficult, and these people outweigh the obligation of providing care. Hardwig is suggesting that some people must die to prevent becoming a burden to others, and the sacrifice of life is always greater than the burden of caring (White). He states that the cost of prolonging one’s life when they are no longer to self-sustain can be excessive. He goes on to state that if medical technology continues to make terminal illness non-existent, we will live long enough to become demented or debilitated, so the duty to die policy would be needed at this point. While he does not identify a certain demographic that has to die, he does suggest that considerations such as age, lifestyle, and having a full life fall under the duty to die (White). Hardwig’s also believes that the duty to die gives meaning to death, as it affirms moral agency (White). The duty to die would allow for consideration of your loved ones, and their mental and financial well-being. Years of long-term care by family members can be devastating mentally and financially. The duty to die philosophy does not affect society as a whole; it will only closely affect those family members who would essentially be burden with long-term care. Society as a whole is only marginally affected by one person’s “duty to die” choice.
References
White, James E. Contemporary Moral Problems. Clark Baxter, 2006.

5. Is euthanasia morally acceptable or not? Explain what you believe about when it is moral and/or immoral to perform euthanasia and explain why your views are correct on this issue.
I believe euthanasia is morally acceptable under certain conditions. I think if a strict set of self-imposed guidelines are imposed, it will always be an acceptable moral decision. I think if one is terminally ill, one must do everything possible to make their final wishes known so others such as family members or doctors can morally carry out the decision of euthanasia. I do not think it is morally acceptable to carry out euthanasia without being terminally ill or if there is no pain or suffering involved. I consider suicide to fall under this category, and although one may state that mental or physical suffering is involved, I do not feel this qualifies as being under acceptable guidelines for euthanasia. I believe with suffering that may cause suicide, one (or family members) must work to get the mental and or physical help that can save lives.
This subject matter is one that everyone most likely has to tackle on a personal level over time. Most of us have experienced the tough decision of euthanasia with our pets, and it is even tighter at a human level. As I stated in my discussion post, carrying out the wishes of a terminally ill family member is a significant burden for one to deal with. I think expressing wishes with such tools as a living will, or even verbally while in a sane mind, will help make the decision of euthanasia less awkward for everyone. I believe making one’s wishes known ahead of any terminal situation such as cancer or in a living will void any questions of morality if euthanasia is completed. Clearly stating wishes ahead of time helps prevent family members from questioning decisions or pushing back on other family members or doctors. This is a very controversial subject that I put right up there with abortion.