Suicide and the harm principle

Each individual has the absolute right to exercise this autonomy, unless their actions impact the autonomy of another person.

Is it right for Jane commit suicide? She recognizes that death is the end of her life and the pain of leaving her family and friends does impact on this decision.

She knows that she can live many more years with the disease but she knows that her quality of life will be reduced. Hence, suicide is justified as long as the individual achieves the ultimate end of happiness despite harming the interests of others.

Therefore, Jane is justified in placing a lower value on the aggregate pain and pleasure of the community compared to her personal pain and pleasure.

Utilitarianism, IV, 3 As the individual desires to die, it is sufficient evidence that the action will provide happiness to the individual. Suicide, even in the case of suffering, would not be a law that a rational agent would universally impose upon society for if it were imposed on society, humanity would be degraded.

Direct harm is when an individual performs an action that directly harms another person, such as murder.

Suicide and the Harm Principle

Hence, the tendency to cause pleasure outweighs the tendency to cause pain and the action should be performed. For example, if someone is willing to free climb a mountainas Alex Honnold is willing to do, or someone is willing to sky dive from what essentially is outer spacethen go ahead, be my guest.

John Stuart Mill and the Complicated Issue of Suicide

Tendency to cause pain: The claim that Jane is treating her humanity as mere means to her end is false. Her violation of the duty through suicide shows a lack of respect for human reason as she is readily able to dispose of her own.

Now, physician-assisted suicide is legal in five statesand this idea of physician assisted suicide was made famous right here in Michigan by Dr. However, this is a self-defeating maxim as one can not enjoy relief from suffering if one ceases to exist.

In cases where autonomous actions result in direct harm to others, either the government is justified in imposing legal sanctions such as jail time, or society is justified in imposing moral sanctions, such as shaming.

When the symptoms begin to set in and worsen, she decides to commit suicide.

To will this to become a universal law would be to will that all human suffering can solved through suicide. Furthermore, she has evaluated her options and upon deep consideration, decided that the pain of living with her condition outweighs the pleasure of living with her condition.

If John Stuart Mill were alive today, he might be conflicted on the matter of the assisted suicide. For the aggregate of the community, pleasure derived from Jane performing the action of suicide would be the comfort in knowing that a her wishes were respected and b her suffering is relieved.

Kevorkian was a very controversial figure, and one I think Mill would have a lot of problems with. For example, if the Jane was a mother, her family has a strong interest in maintaining their family structure and growing up with a present mother.

Tendency to cause pleasure: For Jane, the pain of dying is less than the pain of living. The act of committing suicide would be a self-regarding act. Exegesis In this section, a case will be presented to prompt discussion about the morally validity of suicide.

Furthermore, suicide does not represent a disregard for human rationality. If one commits suicide, one acts in a way that regards their humanity as a mere means to their happiness, as they believe that happiness is achieved following their death.

Kant would argue that suicide degrades humanity on the whole, treating life as a means to the ultimate end, rather than an end in itself Groundwork, Ak4: The Harm Principle is used to determine whether coercion is justifiable based on the impact of individual actions.Nov 24,  · Mill’s harm principle takes an interesting turn when it comes to the matter of assisted-suicide.

I think physician-assisted suicide should be legal, but only if the patient has expressed consent, along with the patient’s family, and the patient has been diagnosed as terminally ill with a specific amount of time left to live. Suicide and the Harm Principle The Right to Suicide and Harm Suicide under circumstances of extreme suffering is the morally right action as opposed to the alternative, living in pain.


S. Mill’s Utilitarian ideals provide strong reasoning to support suicide in instances of severe pain, while Kant’s moral theory of the categorical. We’ve noted previously that John Stuart Mill's Harm Principle seems to be tacitly in place in a good reason to prevent someone from suicide is.

The harm principle 10 Euthanasia is indirect paternalism because it involves the restriction of other persons’ liberty (i.e. the person who executes euthanasia or assists in.

This lesson will cover John Stuart Mills' harm principle, which states that society does not have the right to prevent actions which only affect. The Harm Principle is used to determine whether coercion is justifiable based on the impact of individual show more content Mill would invoke the Harm Principle.

The act of committing suicide would be a self-regarding act.

Suicide and the harm principle
Rated 5/5 based on 45 review