Euthanasia- Good or bad?

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Lily_Alex
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Re: Euthanasia- Good or bad?

Post by Lily_Alex » July 24th, 2013, 3:59 pm

I agree with someone who is mentally unstable, through experience I wouldn't myself allow a sucicide under that frame of mind but accept those who want it who are stable It's such a questionable topic.

Stormcloud
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Re: Euthanasia- Good or bad?

Post by Stormcloud » August 9th, 2013, 2:16 am

Basically, assisting a sufferer to exit this life would be a 'dream occupation' that I would relish and would do freely. To hold a human's hand and support their release from agony - what a profound experience in Love and growth. Oh, but much of the masses is still too bound to their beloved morality to even consider anything so brave and compasssionate. As for my own dying, I will choose and will not feel any guilt but will fade into the night with a smile and Faure's Requiem as companionship.

Mayanka
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Re: Euthanasia- Good or bad?

Post by Mayanka » August 11th, 2013, 12:12 pm

I would support Euthanasia when the circumstance is such as the one mentioned somewhere above about letting the person writhe in agony before it finally ended. But another thing I'd like to consider is that making it legal, and a common, acceptable practice, might just make it too rampant. Euthanasia being unacceptable i think adds value to human life. Also, if it becomes a common practice, any old or critical person might just be pressurised or feel pressurised to give in. There would be a less harassing, cheaper, less painful alternative to keep treatments going. i think a similar point had been made before, just thought I'll add to it.

Also, anything the Pope says can't really be held up in an argument such as this. You don't even have to quote, religion would always say no. If they say yes it'd be like giving people permission to commit suicide.

Simon says...
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Re: Euthanasia- Good or bad?

Post by Simon says... » August 14th, 2013, 11:03 am

I am going to die. Whoever you are, reading this, you also, are going to die, as is everyone you know, everyone you love, everyone you hate, everyone you don't really care about either way, everyone, will die. There is nothing I or you or anyone can do about this. Everyone will die. The only question is how, and when.

Well first lets look at when. Most people feel they'd like a long life, so they fit as much 'stuff' in as possible before they go. However, there isn't a lot of 'stuff' you can do when you're arthritis is so bad you're in a wheel chair, or if that latest stroke killed off most of your motor functions, leaving you paralysed, or if you can't even remember the 'stuff' because you've got Alzheimer's. Most people don't want to get old to the point that they can't do 'stuff', which is the point of living a long life in the first place.

Now lets look at how. Well unless you die conveniently in your sleep, which is highly unlikely, all of the nice ways of dying, like cyanide, bullet to the head, hammer & chisel to the back of the neck into the brain, or loading up on hallucinogens & going out in a beautiful dream, are sadly illegal, meaning the chances are incredibly likely that you'll die in either psychological or physical agony, or both, as most forms of death are.

Lets see, what ARE you allowed to die off: - Stroke: Usually more than one over years, so that different parts of your brain die with each one, giving you a wonderful selection of motor disabilities and neurological trauma to enjoy. - Cancer: This is after they try to save your life by cutting you open and/or making all of your hair fall out, again, over the course of months or years. - Organ failure: Another lovely array of long, drawn out physical torture for you to enjoy, with everything from heart attacks, to liver & kidney failure, to your lungs failing, who doesn't enjoy death by suffocation? - Traffic Accident: Because there is nothing more dignified than having your blood and guts splattered across the road. - Boating Accident: Drowning, or being hit by a sharp propeller is surely an upgrade. - Killed in Action: The armed forces have a lovely selection of deaths, from being shot, to be being stabbed, to being blown apart by an IED, or, if you're really lucky, they might get you captured by terrorists and tortured & executed by means that I have too much taste to go into. - Killed by the weather: Forgetting the obvious things like having your bones crunched by a tsunami in south east Asia, most of the time it's getting lost & being miles away from civilisation. Enjoy freezing to death, or dying of heatstroke and/or thirst guys. - Terrorism: I'll not make any jokes about 9/11 cos it's still a bit too soon. You all know what I'm talking about though. - Mauled by an animal: This is only even allowed if its wild or somebody else's. This is in the same vein as being beaten to death, which is also allowed if you have no choice, but think hoofs instead of fists, and/or sharp teeth & claws tearing at your flesh. - Poisoning: Note some animals are venomous as well, many are not swift endings either. As for human poisons, well cyanide is very quick, as is Botulinum, most, however, aren't. Arsenic in particular is a very nasty & SLOW way to go, as is paracetamol btw.

There are many others, no better, so this begs the question, are governments just sadistic or what?! :|

Stormcloud
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Re: Euthanasia- Good or bad?

Post by Stormcloud » August 15th, 2013, 1:06 am

Theres nothing uncomplicated about Simple Simon, straight into the guts! Your contribution would go well in the daily papers - might stir some from their 'comfortably numb' little insular bubble. Maybe not. Did you ever see the film Soylent Green? This bloke was sat in a layback armchair in front of a cinamascope screen showing all the grand spectacles of nature accompanied by Strauss in quad stereo. In went the needle and he was left as high as a kite to enjoy followed later by the Pentobarbital. Would that we could honour dying as do many women giving birth at home in a quiet and warm atmosphere. Man considers him/herself superior to all the other beings and yet he allows his kin to suffer whilst sending out his beloved pets in a dignified way.

Philosch
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Re: Euthanasia- Good or bad?

Post by Philosch » August 15th, 2013, 9:30 am

Here, here Simon and Storm. Forgetting all the potential abuses for a moment, the objection to euthanasia is a manifestation of a deep psychological resistance to what "is" by the masses. That same phenomenon is responsible for the whole expansion of an out of control medical establishment. This is even manifested in a governement who interferes with the pain management of terminal patients because of ill conceieved notions about narcotics. Imagine not giving heroin to a terminally ill patient to relieve their suffering because we can't have them become a junky the last week of their life. It's so irrational and silly I can hardly believe a modern civilized society tolerates that kind of nonsensical thinking. It actually seems rather ironic to me that christians in particular, who have such a supposed deep belief in their reward in a beautiful heaven, have such terror and aversion and rejection of death. I was born and raised Catholic. I've experienced several family tragedies and the Catholic priests' point of view at the time was woefully inadequate to offer any comfort or understanding. Anyone who professes deep faith in an afterlife should be accepting and welcoming of their pain and suffering, realizing their ultimate reward is in heaven and not here. Instead they franticly cling to every last second and indeed demand every expensive and extraordinary measure be taken because their own death terrifies them so much as well as the loss of loved ones. I actually admire certain christian fundementalists who reject medical care as at least they are living their beliefs. It's another irony that most likely some christian judge will force them to endure treatment because they of course have a better understanding of god's will.

Once I began to understand things from a decidedly more buddhist way of thinking, my fear and rejection of what "is" became less. Euthanasia in the proper circumstance may be one of the greatest acts of compassion one could offer another suffering human being.

Pastabake
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Re: Euthanasia- Good or bad?

Post by Pastabake » August 15th, 2013, 11:37 am

Could some of this clinging by Christians be more of an unwillingness to get what they believe is coming? To believe in God is one thing, to believe that your sins wont damn you to hell is another.

Euthanasia is clearly good and bad. It's terrible to suffer needlessly, but then on the other hand some people are easily persuaded - especially the old ... so who gets to decide and who gets to keep it all clean??

America already has a form of euthanasia selected by your ability to pay. If your insurance covers the bill the Dr's will do their utmost to keep the money flowing, when it runs out, so does your life.

Philosch
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Re: Euthanasia- Good or bad?

Post by Philosch » August 15th, 2013, 3:05 pm

Certainly it could be Pastabake, more likely it's that their faith in an afterlife isn't very strong at all, that would be my take. As far as all the arguments against, all the possible abuses, I think most are "red herrings". Not that there wouldn't be any problems or abuses, but the number would be very small compared to the benefits to the suffering.

Bottom line to me is that if I wan't to take my own life I believe I have that right. I have no need to justify it to anyone. If I have a right to life then I also have a right to die, that stands to reason dosn't it?

This only becomes a problem when I ask someone else to do it for me because I don't have the capacity to do it. It is when we ask someone else to help us that society can then step in and assess the situation in a compassionate way and either help the person die or get them psychological treatment and help them live depending on the circumstance.

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Mike A.
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Re: Euthanasia- Good or bad?

Post by Mike A. » August 18th, 2013, 3:01 pm

"Many ethical debates have surrounded the moral dilemma of euthanasia, is it wrong to take your own life? Or have someone else do it for you, and if in this sense, is it murder?"

And then the discussion is diluted or distracted by reference to the Catholic Church. A catholic issue need not be in a Catholic context, eh what?

"...is it wrong to take your own life?" Of course not, if one has free will.

"... is it wrong to... have someone else do it for you, and if in this sense, is it murder?" A little more complicated. Like a samurai assisting in the suicide of another? Hmmm...

I visit senior citizen residents/residences. I see those poor souls sitting in an apparently oblivious state, with drool issuing from the corners of their mouth, and food stains down their shirts... Perhaps they don't know. Perhaps they do. It is a sad way to end one's days.

To what end would a compassionate human sentence another to a life of staring eye and gaping mouth, of embarrassed drooling?

I choose to believe in a God. If I decide to take my life, it is my choice, and I believe the God I believe in observes without judgement. I get to choose how to live or not. I get to choose how to live in contexts, such as 'whether times are good or bad, happy or sad... ' Shades of Al Green.

Just as I choose to be a Catholic, I choose to exercise free will as I practice being so. Euthanasia is neither good nor bad, in my opinion. It is a decision made by an individual. In the first instance by the individual.

Society feels empowered to intrude on the will of the individual in so many ways. Most intrusions serve a common good. Too many, in some minds, are unnecessary intrusions.

I wonder if the pro and con of euthanasia is fear driven. If one can take one's life, how big a stretch is if for another to decide to take another's life? When does euthanasia become murder and genocide?

No answers for others. My vision has to do with the exercise of my free will, perhaps a la the scene from Soylent Green where one drifts off in a room of visual and musical peace.

Or not.
"I wouldn't touch that dog, son. He don't take to pettin."
Hondo [played by John Wayne in the title role]

Philosch
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Re: Euthanasia- Good or bad?

Post by Philosch » August 19th, 2013, 9:49 am

Mike A, I'm curious, in what sense do you consider yourself a Catholic if you claim to believe in a god who does not Judge? I might suspect you are more of a gnostic christian who enjoys or appreciates some of the Catholic ritual, but not to knit pick or anything, to "be" a Catholic in the proper or official sense you cannot claim to be, and then throw out a central tennant which is required for membership. It would be like me claiming to be a medical doctor even though I don't have a medical degree or license to practice. In any event I was just curious.

My reference to Catholic's was only incidental as I once was a Catholic. I was really impuning many so-called mainstream christian denominations, wasn't singling out Catholics for any reason other then that was my experience.

Of course euthanasia is a complicated social issue. It is a matter of free will as you say. But how is a quadrapalegic supposed to exercise their free will? If you must label the assisted suicide as something in this case, why does if have to be murder. Is it murder as a legal definition or murder as merely a descriptive definition? They are not the same thing. A soldier kills an enemy in a conflict. Descriptively that is homicide (murder) by definition, the taking of a human life in any context. In a legal sense, the killing of an enemy combatant is exempt from this label. Same in a self defense situation. They even call it justifiable "Homicide" or justifiable "murder". So perhaps in cases where someone's will is very clear, but they are not capable of carrying out their own wishes, a legal category like "compassionate justifiable euthanasia" could be considered. Just a thought.

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Mike A.
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Re: Euthanasia- Good or bad?

Post by Mike A. » August 19th, 2013, 11:22 am

Ah, curiosity. A good thing, no?

By birth, an Irish-Catholic [of the very practicing kind] - perhaps a distinction without a difference. By formative education, taught by Carmelites and then Jesuits - curiosity and questioning corner stones in the process of growing. Of course, Uncle Sam too played a role in exposing me to life's complexities.

Then too, philosophy in broad brush entered the fray. In the end, the word 'hubris' influences much of my assessing process. Then too, when should consider how information is disseminated, much like the party game where a message is whispered into one's ear, and then transferred by whisper to another, and another, and another, and often in the end the message bears little semblance of the original. How should we then give full our adherence to tenets?

I try to see an issue from the many sides - mostly I'm unsuccessful, I fear. As a Catholic, I see a tradition in the abstract. I think man is fallible and no matter what the elevation above the average, that fallibility is still evidenced. My Irish immigrant mother would think me a heretic but love me just the same. It is confusing, I suppose but since we are all labeled, I prefer the label Catholic. Then too, catholic [small 'c'] is defined as universal or having broad or wide-ranging in tastes, interests, or the like; having sympathies with all; broad-minded; liberal. That is amusing in that many of my friends believe me to be to the right of Attila.

I assert I am a Catholic because I don't believe I am being a heretic by asserting that I have a vision of God that includes a heightened view of forgiveness. I don't think, if God imbues man with free will, that being a Catholic means I have been bestowed a membership that can easily be revoked - but that is just me. I don't think I am a gnostic christian but then again who knows? In so far as man seems to have allocated to himself the arrogance of speaking for God, and in so far as I think God is not a lawyer who parses a life for flaws and seeks revenge and retribution, I choose to believe in forgiveness.

I practice being a Catholic but I do not think God would expect me to be blind or dogmatic. Again, that pesky free will thing infects me. Mea culpa.

I suppose in the absence of forgiveness one should not be born. For if we believe in omnipotence, then God knows before we are born how we will turn out. But that is yet another troubled road.

I do not have a clear view of how an individual, unable to carry out action after the exercise free will, might be assisted. Indeed, it is a concern that I have given no small thought to. I tend to agree with the possibility of "compassionate justifiable euthanasia" as a means to an end. It is with a sense of wonder I note we are able to act with intended compassion to euthanize a beloved dog or a cat but not extend that same compassion to a person. Hubris - ya gotta love it.
"I wouldn't touch that dog, son. He don't take to pettin."
Hondo [played by John Wayne in the title role]

Philosch
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Re: Euthanasia- Good or bad?

Post by Philosch » August 19th, 2013, 1:00 pm

My take on gnosticism is that it's a christian sect with a decidely more sophisticated and non-literal view of the new testament, along with a more "humane" view of "god", inline with some of what you say your viewpoint is. In any case I'll accept your small "c" catholic label. I do get a little perturbed with many who claim to be Catholic and then proceed to give me a long list of exceptions, from not believing in the pope's authority, to not going to church or communion and any number of violations of doctrine and dogma. At that point I always ask, "who are you trying to kid and why bother flashing your membership card". I come from a large German Catholic family but I have no problem shedding those labels for a broader one such as a "seeker" of understanding and perspective. And well most would call me either an atheist or agnostic at best, I still appreciate many christian ideals as well as many eastern philosophical ideas. I absolutely think it's up to the individual to choose their own way, to do otherwise is to throw away the most important and valuable thing a human being has. Their "mind", a term I mean in the broadest sense imaginable.

Your explaination seems sincere and well thought out so I appreciate the answer and your off the hook. Bet you sleep easier knowing that huh...LOL.

As far as the compassion shown towards animals by many, along with the disregard for animals by a large portion of society, I have become utterly perplexed by the breadth of perspective, insight and understanding or the lack there of by so many. The shear scope of the differences in thought on this an many other issues is truely astonishing. Makes me wonder if it's just a matter of mis-information or if there is no amount of rationality that can cut through such hard held beliefs. I have heard some say "don't trust that rationality you tout, it can lead to unimaginable cruelties", and to this I have to agree. So I will inform and temper my rationality with the second concept that distinguishes the human mind from the rest of the known universe, and that is true compassion. With rationality and compassion held fast, all of these issues should be manageable.

Stormcloud
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Re: Euthanasia- Good or bad?

Post by Stormcloud » August 19th, 2013, 10:44 pm

:D The problem with being a forerunner in thought is that you see beyond all the stale mores, values, conceptions, myths and find yourself pretty much alone with a new paradigm where others are unable to share your viewpoint. The further you enquire the more "far out" you become. It's a good trip if you can find a like mind or three. Peace!

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Mike A.
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Re: Euthanasia- Good or bad?

Post by Mike A. » August 20th, 2013, 8:18 am

I don't know... Forerunner or far behind follower... Who knows?

It is in the discussion that one might, by describing and listening, begin to clarify, in the moment, a thought or opinion. I admire those who have stuff figured out by the pure power of their intellect. A new paradigm.

I was listening to a conversation between two passionate types, both trying to out volume the other, and each absolutely convinced in the rightness and clarity of their vision. Kinda of like a person's 'discussion' in a canyon - you only hear yourself.

After a few whiles I asked my two chums to switch sides and argue the other side. They were quite uncomfortable with the prospect. I mentioned that I thought it a bit unenlightened to be so committed to one's rightness that they could not argue with equal enthusiasm the points of their adversary. Half an argument or selective fact use is comforting to some but unsatisfying to some who would like a bit more balance in a discussion.

I don't know what that was all about but...

One must seem schizophrenic when waffling between seemingly conflicting thoughts. Can a person be a liberal and a conservative at the same time? Can a person be for and against euthanasia at the same time? Situation specific dialog seems to narrow a discussion to a micro level , in turn leading to a forest or trees discussion. Personally, I enjoy discussing stuff in vigorous give and take. But some times it is like talking with a hardened heart.

Is not listening a key attribute? And if so, is anyone listening? Hey, I need another cup of coffee. Some one? Any one?
"I wouldn't touch that dog, son. He don't take to pettin."
Hondo [played by John Wayne in the title role]

Laurence43
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Re: Euthanasia- Good or bad?

Post by Laurence43 » August 20th, 2013, 10:54 am

I can see both sides of the argument "for and against" as well as any religious beliefs. I am a Catholic too but have great compassion for those who are in terminal pain or are emotionally attached to someone who is. I am sure a kind "God" does not look harshly on such an act. But to legalize the process seems to leave matters to open to coercion or wrong acts. I would be happy to leave euthanasia open to investigation, with a deeply compassionate understanding of any circumstances.

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