mjawakening – 12.01.09 Clue 1 – Double Jeopardy

Well I just started looking at this site and found it really interesting.  I really don’t want to get too sidetracked by all these blogs, sites, etc. from what I believe to be the bottomline message – LOVE one another and serve God – however, I will indulge with an open mind.

On a whole, the messages and missions given to us are good ones.  Ones that may help repair broken relationships, make a difference in the lives around us, and to reconnect on a social level.

On to the clues:

Clue 1 from Dec 1st was

And specifically our focus is directed to the tagline of “Murder isn’t always a Crime”

So I started digging to see when murder isn’t a crime.

The administration of lethal drugs by a doctor to a terminally ill patient, if the intention is solely to alleviate pain, is seen in many jurisdictions as a special case (see the doctrine of double effect and the case of Dr John Bodkin Adams).

Crapola!  Was MJ terminally ill or wait… didn’t I hear something about E Casanova being terminally ill?

So what is this doctrine of double effect?  Well it’s best to describe it in relation to what we are talking about… the medical field.


Medicine

A vaccine manufacturer typically knows that while a vaccine will save many lives, a few people may die from side-effects of vaccination. The manufacture of a drug is in itself morally neutral. Lives are saved as a result of the vaccine, not as a result of the deaths due to side-effects. The bad effect, the deaths due to side-effects, does not further any goals of the manufacturer, and hence is not intended as a means to any end. Finally, the number of lives saved is much greater than the number lost, and so the proportionality condition is satisfied. This is more a case of side-effects/benefit analysis than of a real Principle application and is common in medicine.

The principle of double effect is frequently cited in cases of pregnancy and abortion. A doctor who believes abortion is always morally wrong may nevertheless remove the uterus or fallopian tubes of a pregnant woman, knowing the procedure will cause the death of the embryo or fetus, in cases in which the woman is certain to die without the procedure (examples cited include aggressive uterine cancer and ectopic pregnancy). In these cases, the intended effect is to save the woman’s life, not to terminate the pregnancy, and the effect of not performing the procedure would result in the greater evil of the death of both the mother and the unborn child.

So specifically in the case of Dr. Adams, what is did in the British legal system was first, establishing the principle of double effect that if a doctor “gave treatment to a seriously ill patient with the aim of relieving pain or distress, as a result of which that person’s life was inadvertently shortened, the doctor was not guilty of murder.”

This lets Dr. Murray off the hook.

So there is not going to be any arrests/convictions in my opinion.

But who died then?

Medicine

A vaccine manufacturer typically knows that while a vaccine will save many lives, a few people may die from side-effects of vaccination. The manufacture of a drug is in itself morally neutral. Lives are saved as a result of the vaccine, not as a result of the deaths due to side-effects. The bad effect, the deaths due to side-effects, does not further any goals of the manufacturer, and hence is not intended as a means to any end. Finally, the number of lives saved is much greater than the number lost, and so the proportionality condition is satisfied. This is more a case of side-effects/benefit analysis than of a real Principle application and is common in medicine.

The principle of double effect is frequently cited in cases of pregnancy and abortion. A doctor who believes abortion is always morally wrong may nevertheless remove the uterus or fallopian tubes of a pregnant woman, knowing the procedure will cause the death of the embryo or fetus, in cases in which the woman is certain to die without the procedure (examples cited include aggressive uterine cancer and ectopic pregnancy). In these cases, the intended effect is to save the woman’s life, not to terminate the pregnancy, and the effect of not performing the procedure would result in the greater evil of the death of both the mother and the unborn child.

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~ by lilwendy on December 15, 2009.

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