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Your Time is up - the move towards the legalisation of euthanasia in Ireland has begun...81% now support it according to the Journal.ie

Karloff

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Because it's humane and merciful. I do take your point - in certain, limited cases, euthanasia is arguably humane/merciful. But again, the obsession with the sanctity of the individual at the expense of the common good is gravely concerning. Sacrificing Sanctity of life in favour of quality of life has serious repercussions for society IMO. So, like abortion, where do you draw a distinction between Sanctity of life and quality of life?

The other two points are valid as well. It's too simplistic to compare humans with animals; it's a crude comparison. We don't foist our own moral dictums on animals so why use such a comparison to advocate in favour of euthanasia for humans?
Unlike abortion (not a good analogy) the issue of consent would rule over euthanasia. I agree that it needs to be watched, can never become a situation where it is judged in terms of the expense of keeping people alive and there is always a danger when you bring it in people may be pressured by others. Therefore extreme safeguards would need to be in place and it should never become 'cool'.

I used the animal comparison because it is valid, we euthanise pets because we don't want them to suffer unneccessarily and we can't ask them what they think. Not a perfect analogy true but every pet owner who loved a pet felt anguish and extreme discomfort at the decision.
 

sighthound

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i must say i welcome the chance to have euthanaisa in ireland so i can get to fuck out before we are completely over taken and become prisoners in our homes against the new Irish ( with better tans). The care homes in ireland are a disgrace keeping people alive to milk them of their homes and finances ( Fair deal shite introduced by mary harney). let people decide them selves whether they want to live unhealthy lives strapped into chairs wearing nappies or being taken to the toilet by pakistani male orderlies. Given the choice i choose my own death.
 

Vengeful Glutton

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Unlike abortion (not a good analogy) the issue of consent would rule over euthanasia. I agree that it needs to be watched, can never become a situation where it is judged in terms of the expense of keeping people alive and there is always a danger when you bring it in people may be pressured by others. Therefore extreme safeguards would need to be in place and it should never become 'cool'.

I used the animal comparison because it is valid, we euthanise pets because we don't want them to suffer unneccessarily and we can't ask them what they think. Not a perfect analogy true but every pet owner who loved a pet felt anguish and extreme discomfort at the decision.
Abortion is a very good analogy. Abortion proponents argue that ending the life of a disabled child is morally acceptable, since that child cannot (in their view) enjoy the quality of life that able bodied people can enjoy. So, essentially, life is reduced to being something that is defined qualitatively. Some commentators - most notably Peter Singer - have justified infanticide on that basis. Curiously, people such as Singer argue heatedly about the injustice of discrimination (not just against people, but against animals) and yet they cannot see the irony of their arguments prioritising quality of life over sanctity of life.

The animal analogy works up to a point. I agree. But its use is an example of sloganeering: reducing a complex argument to a few words, or in this case a rather coarse analogy. I'm on the fence about this issue, but I think if we start equating human suffering with animal suffering, then we need to apply this metric to other aspects of the human-animal analogy. So, for example, would it be fair to say that a rat has more moral value than a child born with cerebral palsy?

For me, it's not as simple as "well what do you do when your pet cat is suffering?" Again, I point you to the repercussions such thinking can have for the common good. A society underpinned by the glory of the individual is doomed. I think we're already seeing the first symptoms of that sickness in our own culture.
 

Karloff

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Abortion is a very good analogy. Abortion proponents argue that ending the life of a disabled child is morally acceptable, since that child cannot (in their view) enjoy the quality of life that able bodied people can enjoy. So, essentially, life is reduced to being something that is defined qualitatively.
I would never advocate one person making a euthanasia decision for another person, only a person making it for themselves.

But its use is an example of sloganeering: reducing a complex argument to a few words, or in this case a rather coarse analogy.
The animal analogy shows that people are quite willing to acknowledge that sometimes life has become too painful and should end it is only imperfect because someone other than the animal is making the decision. It shows that the concept of euthanasia is not an alien proposal drawn up by some oddball social theorist, but something many of us have already done for our beloved pets.
 

Vengeful Glutton

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I would never advocate one person making a euthanasia decision for another person, only a person making it for themselves.
Neither would I, but the point is that if you define life in qualitative terms, then you must accept that aborting a disabled child in utero is morally acceptable.

The animal analogy shows that people are quite willing to acknowledge that sometimes life has become too painful and should end it is only imperfect because someone other than the animal is making the decision. It shows that the concept of euthanasia is not an alien proposal drawn up by some oddball social theorist, but something many of us have already done for our beloved pets.
Very true, but again you'd accept that many animals are put down simply because its too expensive to keep them alive. In other words, the costs outweigh the benefits of keeping it alive.

Do you think that it's morally acceptable to apply that utilitarian logic to humans?
 

Karloff

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Neither would I, but the point is that if you define life in qualitative terms, then you must accept that aborting a disabled child in utero is morally acceptable.
I think we can only determine the quality of life for ourselves, nobody can understand the experience of another - by definition. Abortion decisions on disabled children are largely based on the fact that the mother will raise the child and if the child is greatly disabled this can be like a life sentence upon her, there is a dependency element.

Very true, but again you'd accept that many animals are put down simply because its too expensive to keep them alive. In other words, the costs outweigh the benefits of keeping it alive.
This is true. There is a much better comparison to be made between euthanasia for pets in the case where expense/inconvenience etc are the issue and abortion than between either of these things and euthanasia for humans.
 

DrPat2

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I would never advocate one person making a euthanasia decision for another person, only a person making it for themselves.



The animal analogy shows that people are quite willing to acknowledge that sometimes life has become too painful and should end it is only imperfect because someone other than the animal is making the decision. It shows that the concept of euthanasia is not an alien proposal drawn up by some oddball social theorist, but something many of us have already done for our beloved pets.
Since you are referring to the 'humane' killing of pets, however beloved, may I draw another one - when did you ever hear of an animal killing itself because it is in pain?
 

DrPat2

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Good on ya Gemma!
Troublesome old relative with aches and pains but with loads of financial assets - get an enduring power of attorney and with a right to euthanasia - easy, peasy, 'we're in the money'.

Cynical I know but the concept of rights to do whatever you want without consequences doesn't exist.
 
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Karloff

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Since you are referring to the 'humane' killing of pets, however beloved, may I draw another one - when did you ever hear of an animal killing itself because it is in pain?
The point i was raising had nothing to do with animals or their behaviour i wasn't drawing comparisons between humans and animals, i wasn't saying because euthanasia is right for sick animals it is right for sick humans my point was to do with humans - specifically the human owner who makes the decision and i was asking why society allows this and suggesting that humans in sound mind should be able (in strict circumstances) to make a similar decision for themselves, if they want to.
 
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