The Medical Ethics For Passive Or Active Euthanasia ?

Why does the American Medical Association endorse the doctrine that if a patient requests withholding any extraordinary means to sustain his life including the necessities of life (food and water) and wants to die, it's okay by the doctors. But, it's not okay for a doctor to terminate a patients life, intentionally, even if the patient requests it and wants to die, and if by doing so would alleviate the patients pain. What is the distinction between the two?

Passive Euthanasia

Most people would agree, just let a person die. If he doesn't want to eat, and has let everyone know, then so be it. If he refuses water, don't make him drink! Let nature take its course. It may take a few days of pain, but it will do the trick, that's passive euthanasia. Don't let me mislead anyone, I'm making light of starving to death or death my dehydration. Neither, is pleasant.

Ethically and morally, why would anyone want to make someone live a few more days, especially if they're in pain and being kept alive artificially, long after the person has departed. No one would want that. 

Active Euthanasia

Active Euthanasia would be considered murder if a doctor or anyone for that matter intentionally terminated someone's life, giving them a lethal dose, also known as Mercy Killing. Don't ask a doctor to participate in a Doctor Assisted Suicide, he's obligated to say no though he can advise and judge, he cannot pull the plug. It would go against the AMA policies. The onus is on the immediate family and any wishes of the patient for what happens to end all extraordinary means of life support. 

Lets hope we are never in that situation, brain dead. Where the talk around your death bed is about; why should they keep you alive? All the while staring at you pathetically lying in the bed staring up at the ceiling. An empty shell, blank eyed, hooked to this tube and that, shaking their heads, wishing death would come to you soon. They hate seeing you like this. They know in their hearts, you'd be better off dead. 

When you're better off dead. Hmm! Topic for another blog.

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