In this lecture I begin an exploration of the role that respect for human life plays in contemporary bioethics. Although many bioethical dilemmas could be chosen to illustrate this role, I will focus on the case of physician-assisted suicide. This lecture emphasizes the role that respect for human life plays in arbitrating bioethical disputes that involve physician-assisted suicide. I hope to develop some generalizations about how respect for life and autonomy, beneficence and other values interact and thus constitute or define what respect for life means for us. Part I discusses assisted suicide and the ban against actively killing. Part II highlights the Supreme Court cases and the symbolic lines that have been drawn.
John A. Robertson,
Respect for the Bioethical Dilemmas - The Case of Physician-Assisted Suicide, Sixty-Fifth Cleveland-Marshall Fund Lecture,
45 Clev. St. L. Rev.
available at http://engagedscholarship.csuohio.edu/clevstlrev/vol45/iss3/3