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Lecture 3

SOAN 2111 Lecture Notes - Lecture 3: Prentice Hall, Natural And Legal Rights, Hippocratic Oath


Department
Sociology and Anthropology
Course Code
SOAN 2111
Professor
Linda Hunter
Lecture
3

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Letter by Montesquieu
To whom it may concern,
I am writing this letter concerning the newly passed and controversial legislation or assisted
suicide. This recently passed legislation is the legalization of assisted suicide, for the people who
are terminally ill, this ensures a timely death where one could be surrounded by loved ones in a
controlled environment, such as a hospital. I believe that that the passing of this new legislation
is the progression of the law of nature, understanding the controversy that is behind it. Laws in
society are based upon the nature of the society itself, therefore as a society develops the laws
within said society should develop with it.
For a person, who is terminally ill, with the option of assisted suicide may prefer to choose it.
This could be a personal decision the person makes, as society grows an individual may not
perceive the whole society, in turn tends to see things for their own and their class / groups
interest. As a societys population and physical geography grows, people tend to see for their
own classes and group more than the society as a whole. In the case for assisted suicide, the
group of interest may have preferred to have this choice available to them, instead of them either
having to live with a terminal illness or have to go through euthanasia.
Assisted suicide may not be perfect and is subject to error. For example, it would be going
against doctors Hippocratic oath, and can be concerning for the family. With institutions and
interpreting what the nature of a society is to perceive its laws, therefore could be a subject to
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error, which also can be the product of specific social conditions. As for assisted suicide, there is
no higher of a risk of any non-voluntary euthanasia, which should assure that this is done by the
choice of the person. Also with a set of terms in which have to be met to be allegeable for the
treatments of assisted suicide, which should have a stop people if they were to try to abuse the
system. Even with the precautions, it is subject to error.
This legislation is also a representation of the development of law due to the nature to society.
Laws of a society are based off of the form of it, it is a needed relation coming from the nature of
things. As I have mentioned before, as a society grows, not only do people see in interest for
their own class and group, but the overall form and aspects of a society will correspondingly
change with the society. As assisted suicides have become legalized, it shows us that it is society
growing and then adapting to the growth. It also shows us how man has understood / interpreted
the conditions of their environment, with the interpretation of assisted suicide, is it the portrayal
of what the society wants.
As I was going through some of Lockes work, I noticed that to him the state of nature is as
entirely liberated society, where one can live their life as they see best fit. Nonetheless, this may
not mean a person can do as they please. The state of nature, for assisted suicide, is giving the
freedom on for this option letting people choose what they see as best fit. Although this may
contradict with his views on morality, and not to harm another in respect to their life, health,
property, and freedom. Due to this being a case in which the individual is choosing what they
would like to do with their own life, I believe that this would not be a concern regarding
morality, other than for the doctors who would have to proceed with the procedure.
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