Euthanasia and Egoism Research Paper

Pages: 8 (2380 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 8  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: Master's  ·  Topic: Death and Dying  (general)

, 1980.

They will not consider others in their actions. The person believes that by promoting their own good they are in accordance with morality. They will believe that for as long as they are doing what they see is best for them, then what they decide to do is morally right Annas, 2008.

Having such a belief would deny a person the opportunity to think what others are feeling. The person is only interested in avoiding pain as much as possible. An egoist believes that it is best if they die instead of suffering for long periods. The effect of euthanasia on an egoist would satisfy their own interests, but this would have a devastating effect on the loved ones. Considering their own interests, the egoist will not consider the effect that euthanasia would have on their loved ones. For as long as they feel that no harm is been done on them, they will feel that their decision is morally right. A person has a right on their privacy, and many egoists interpret this to mean they have a right of deciding when they can die.Buy full Download Microsoft Word File paper
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Research Paper on Euthanasia and Egoism Assignment

Ethical egoism is a dilemma as people have different views and desires. The family members might want the loved one to stay with them and try to fight the illness. The egoist on the other hand, might desire to terminate their life without consideration of their loved ones. The ethical dilemma arises, as both parties are not willing to compromise on their decision. An egoist might be against euthanasia. The egoist will feel they are not in control of their well-being and would not allow another person to have control over their life. This would mean that the loved ones and doctors would not terminate the person's life if they are terminally ill. The person would remain on life support machines until they die naturally. The ethical dilemma here is that the loved ones cannot opt to terminate the patient's life, and they will have to bear the medical expenses. This is still an egoist thing since the person does not consider others. An individual facing a lot of pain, loss of bodily functions, and having to spend the rest of their life in bed would prefer to terminate their life. This would be morally right for them since they are using the egoism theory. Another egoist might prefer to receive all the medical technology available to ensure that his or her life is preserved. In the latter case if the person's condition is beyond recovery, when would the doctors or loved ones opt for terminating the life. This is where the moral problem arises. The patient has opted to have their life preserved using all the medical technology available, but the doctors know with certainty that the patient will not recover. Will the doctors then opt for involuntary euthanasia?

Doctors have to take the Hippocratic Oath, which states that a doctor has a duty to preserve a life at all costs. An egoist would not care of the doctor's oath, and they will insist that the doctor terminates their life or assists in terminating their life. This is an ethical dilemma the doctor will face, and they will not know how to resolve the dilemma.


The act of terminating a life raises many debates. People are divided in regards to euthanasia. The opponents see that if it is legalized there is a possibility that euthanasia might be abused. Those pushing for euthanasia claim that it would be beneficial to the terminally ill patients. These are both justifiable arguments, and they are all morally correct. People have different desires and respecting a person's choice is vital in protecting their rights. Euthanasia raises many moral issues. Doctors have to preserve a life, and if the same doctors are given the right to terminate a life, then this conflicts with their oaths. Passive euthanasia is a better option, but it leaves the patient to suffer without any medications to relieve the pain. This would affect the relatives of the patient as they would not want to see their loved one suffer. If the patient is an egoist they would prefer to have their life terminated or maintained. This would result in conflicts. Currently euthanasia is illegal in a majority of countries and few will allow it without a court order. Patients suffering from terminally ill conditions that have no possibility of recovery ought to be allowed to undergo euthanasia. This would be morally and ethically right.


Annas, J. (2008). Virtue ethics and the charge of egoism.

AVMA Panel on Euthanasia. (2001). 2000 Report of the AVMA Panel on Euthanasia. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, 218(5), 669.

De Wachter, M. (1989). Active euthanasia in the Netherlands. JAMA, 262(23), 3316-3319.

DIEKSTRA, R.F. (1995). Dying in dignity: The pros and cons of assisted suicide. Psychiatry and clinical neurosciences, 49(S1), S139-S148.

Jecker, N.A.S.J., A.R. Pearlman, R.A. (1997). Bioethics: An Introduction to the History, Methods, and Practice. Burlington, MA: Jones and Bartlett Publishers.

Jochemsen, H., & Keown, J. (1999). Voluntary euthanasia under control? Further empirical evidence from The Netherlands. Journal of Medical Ethics, 25(1), 16-21.

Regis Jr., E. (1980). What is ethical egoism?

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APA Style

Euthanasia and Egoism.  (2014, March 18).  Retrieved September 28, 2020, from

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"Euthanasia and Egoism."  18 March 2014.  Web.  28 September 2020. <>.

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"Euthanasia and Egoism."  March 18, 2014.  Accessed September 28, 2020.