University of Pittsburgh Law Review. University of Pittsburgh. School of Law
Oregon's Death with Dignity Act was first passed by a ballot initiative in 1994, but numerous judicial challenges delayed implementation of the Act. In November of 1997, following the United States Supreme Court decisions in Vacco v. Quill and Washington v. Glucksberg, which left the states' power to regulate physician-assisted suicide undisturbed, the Oregon voters upheld their law. Oregon remains the only state in the nation to authorize physician-assisted suicide.
Chaplains serving in the health care context provide a ministry to dying patients of inestimable worth as they comfort patients in the last chapter of the journey by being present, listening, and caring. Chaplains also play another important role, helping patients clarify ways in which their beliefs and values might influence health care decisions. This paper reviewed the current trends of spiritual diversity alongside the aging of a large Baby Boomer cohort.
Roman Catholic bioethics seems to be caught in a paradox. On the one hand it is committed to the natural law tradition and the power of reason to understand the structures of creation and the moral law. On the other hand there is a greater and greater appeal to Scripture and revelation. The tradition maintains that reason is capable of understanding the rational structures of reality and that ethics is properly built on metaphysics. In this way ethics, bioethics, is non-sectarian.
This paper presents my personal convictions, as an Evangelical, regarding the absolute impropriety of doctor-assisted suicide for Christians. They have been "bought with a price" and are owned by Another. Hence, they must always strive to glorify God in their bodies, both in life and in death.
In Life's Dominion Dworkin aims at defusing the controversy about abortion and euthanasia by redefining its terms. Basically it is not a dispute about the right to life, but about its value. Liberals should grant that human life has not only a personal, but also an intrinsic value; conservatives should accept the principle of toleration which requires to let people decide for themselves about matters of intrinsic value.
Against the backdrop of ancient, mediaeval and modern Catholic teaching prohibiting killing (the rule against killing), the question of assisted suicide and euthanasia is examined. In the past the Church has modified its initial repugnance for killing by developing specific guidelines for permitting killing under strict conditions. This took place with respect to capital punishment and a just war, for example.
The historic or traditional Christian view of pain (suffering) and death, especially as preserved by the Christians East (i.e., the Orthodox), is radically opposed to the modern secular obsession with avoidance of pain. Everything about this life has its goal or aim in a mystical reality, the Kingdom of Heaven, for which earthly life is a preparation. While neither illness nor health are seen as ends in themselves, both are viewed as proceeding from the will of God for our benefit and have no ultimate meaning or purpose outside of eternal life.
This paper presents the medical practice according to the occidental philosophy (Platon, Spinoza, Kant). Relationships with the concept of "love" (eros, philia, agape) will be described, and the concept of dignity and autonomy as well. The reflection will focus on the end of life aspects. Although medicine cannot avoid morality, ethic, and deontology, it is also part of philosophy and must warrant the respect of human dignity, especially when a physician helps a patient to die.
Employing the tenets of philosophical materialism, this paper discusses the ethical debate surrounding assisted suicide for persons suffering end-stage Alzheimer's. It first presents a classification of the dissociative situations between "human individual" and "human person". It then moves on to discuss challenges to diagnosed persons and their caregivers in relation to the cardinal virtues of Spinozistic ethics--strength of character (fortitudo), firmness (animositas) and generosity (generositas).
In the author's experience most normal healthy adults would like to have the choice of medical help to die if they become incurably ill and find their suffering intolerable. The reasons for this are explored, based on ten years of listening and talking about the subject to a wide variety of people in many countries. The most familiar and common are the avoidance of futile suffering and the desire to retain autonomy. This paper concentrates on the dislike of losing independence and its closely associated wish to continue to behave altruistically.