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Tag Archives: quality of life

Should There Be a Legal Right to Die?


Photo Credit: Stock.Xchnge

by Dr. David Benatar

Just as people value having control over where they live, what occupation they have, whom they marry, and whether to have children, so people value having control over whether or not they continue living when the quality of their lives deteriorates. This is why the right to life and the right to die are not two rights, but two aspects or descriptions of the same right. The right to life is the right to decide whether or not one will continue living. The right to die is the right to decide whether or not one will die (when one could continue living). If a right to life were only a right to decide to continue living, and did not also include a right to decide not to continue living, then it would be a duty to live rather than a right to life.  The idea that we have a duty to continue living, irrespective of how bad our lives become, is an implausible one indeed.

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