The vacuousness of rights in the euthanasia debate

Amarasekara, Kumar and Bagaric, Mirko 2002, The vacuousness of rights in the euthanasia debate, International journal of human rights, vol. 6, no. 1, Spring, pp. 19-44.

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Title The vacuousness of rights in the euthanasia debate
Author(s) Amarasekara, Kumar
Bagaric, Mirko
Journal name International journal of human rights
Volume number 6
Issue number 1
Season Spring
Start page 19
End page 44
Publisher Routledge
Place of publication London, England
Publication date 2002
ISSN 1364-2987
Keyword(s) euthanasia
human rights
right to autonomy
right of life
Summary It has been claimed that the arguments for and against euthanasia have not changed in the last 120 years. Throughout this period, two rights claims have been thought to be central to the debate. The right to autonomy is invoked by many euthanasists as the main argument in support of euthanasia. This is often countered by the claim that euthanasia violates the right to life. This article argues that the relevance of these rights claims to the euthanasia debate has been overstated. More generally, it is argued that the bluntness of the rights claims in the context of the euthanasia debate is illustrative of the fact that the concept of rights is an unsuitable device for resolving moral disputes which involve conflicting rights.
Language eng
Field of Research 180199 Law not elsewhere classified
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Business and Law
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