Secularist views - Peter Singer – Utilitarian For - Wikispaces

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16 Δεκ 2012 (πριν από 4 χρόνια και 10 μήνες)

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Viewpoints on Medical Ethics Revision








The viewpoints on the ethics of genetic engineering and euthanasia
are similar.


Genetic engineering :


An embryo is a
potential

life.


Should we be ‘playing God’ or ‘meddling with nature’ when we
allow embryos to be altered?


Are we allowing murder if embryos are being discarded because
they are defective or after using them for research?


Euthanasia:


Do we have the right to end a life prematurely or are we ‘playing
God’?



We are concerned with the viewpoints of:




Scientists



Christians



Hindus



Secularists



You



Genetic Engineering


The manipulation of the genetic material of an organism.

Medical Scientists Views

For:


An embryo is just a collection of cells with no feelings


‘Life’ doesn’t begin at conception so it’s not murder


It can help get rid of diseases such as Parkinson’s,


Alzheimer's and maybe even cancer.


Responses:


It could lead to human life being devalued


If life does begin at conception it could be murder


It could lead to a society of designer babies


Only the rich may be able to afford it


We could end up breeding clones for spare parts



Christian Views

For:


Christianity teaches compassion towards others; allowing a
childless couple to have a child is compassionate


Roman Catholic Church believes gene therapy is acceptable if it is
of medical benefit


Church of Scotland only approves medical research on embryos
up to 14 days of development


Jesus did not want people to suffer; finding new treatments and
cures helps prevent suffering

Against:


Some Christians believe life begins at conception so using
embryos for research is murder


In the Bible’s Book of Exodus, Moses received the
Commandments, one of which was ‘Do not kill’


The Book of Job from the Bible teaches that life is sacred and only
should be ended by God





Hindu Views

For:


The atman (soul) lives forever so it would continue to exist.


Showing compassion and helping others is a requirement of
dharma.




Against:


The atman enters the embryo at conception so

i
t is murder.


Brahman is in all things, so harming an embryo is harming
Brahman


Killing an embryo disrupts samsara which will lead to poor karma


Ahimsa means non
-
harm, an in important aspect of Hinduism, so
killing an embryo is not following dharma and could lead to poor
karma



Secularist views
-

Peter
Singer


Utilitarian


For:


Abortions are carried out to terminate cases such

as Down’s Syndrome; allowing genetic selection

would avoid the need for abortion


Utilitarians want what the majority of people want which is for
embryo research to continue


We shouldn’t be put off using genetic engineering because
someone
might

abuse it.


Concerns:


The government must ensure that it is not only the rich that
benefit


Secularist views


Richard
D
awkins


British Humanist Assoc. (BHA)

For:



It is the
quality

of life that matters, not the
sanctity

of life.


Genetic engineering is not bad in itself, it is how it is used.


Up until 14 days of development, an embryo is just a collection
of cells and cannot suffer.


If embryos can be used to stop pain and suffering then they
should.





Concerns:



Safeguards against misuse must be put in place by the government

Euthanasia


An good or easy death


Choosing to end your life with professional assistance

Christian Views

Against:


The Book of Job from the Bible teaches that life is sacred

and
only should be ended by
God



In the Bible’s Book of Exodus, Moses received the
Commandments
,
one of which was ‘Do not kill’



Pope John Paul II, Roman Catholic, said euthanasia was


‘breaking God’s laws’



Church of Scotland says life is ‘on loan’ from God and

we must look after it



The Father Ireneus theodicy tells that there can be a purpose to
suffering




Christian
Views

For:



In the Bible, Luke Ch. 10, says that we should love each other as
we love ourselves; allowing euthanasia is the ultimate act of love.



Jesus taught compassion; it is not compassionate to let someone
die in extreme pain so euthanasia should be allowed.



Jesus came to Earth to stop suffering; so should we if we can.



If someone is a PVS then the ‘person’ has already gone.

Hindu
Views

Against:


Suicide and assisting suicide is a sin



Brahman gives life and Brahman should take it away



Bad actions such as euthanasia leads to poor karma in rebirth
(Bhagavad Gita 14:16)



Euthanasia interferes with the cycle of samsara thus affecting
achievement of Moksha


For:


Ending someone's suffering is a good thing resulting in good karma



Brahman does not want needless suffering and his grace will
understand our actions


Secularist views
-

Peter Singer


Utilitarian

For:


People should have the freedom to choose how they die.



Life is about
quality



if there is none then death should be allowed.



People should be allowed to die with dignity



If someone is incapable of making a decision then relatives or medical staff
should do it for them



Not allowing euthanasia can mean someone’s pain be extended



Responses

to Secularist
views
-

Peter Singer


Utilitarian



There is always hope of a cure (and it has happened in the past)



There could be a miracle



Palliative care is getting better all the time



Pain relief treatments are always improving



Specialists can get diagnosis and prognosis wrong

Your Views


For or Against?



It is advisable to have your answer prepared



It is easier to answer both FOR & AGAINST



It is best to use the arguments you have learned on the
course



E.g. 2 well developed points FOR & 2 well developed
points against


you are showing you understand the
issues.