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31 Loy. L. A. L. Rev. 1123 (1997-1998)


"Arguments for legalising euthanasia rely on claims about autonomy rights, or claims about political pluralism, or on both sorts of claim. My response will make three main points. First, those demanding this legalisation have shirked their elementary obligation to describe the alleged right, identify who has it, and delineate its boundaries as a right supposed to trump other goods, interests, and the wellbeing or rights of others. Second, they have neglected, or at best hugely underestimated, the casualties who would be, and in some places already are being, created by the success of their campaign. Third, they proceed on an inadmissible conception of the nature and value of human life and dignity-on a theory which should be rejected for the same sorts of reasons of equality and dignity that lead us to reject as a matter of principle the alleged right (often recognised in former societies) to free yourself from perhaps crushing burdens by selling yourself into slavery."


Reprinted with permission of Loyola of Los Angeles Law Review.