Last updated on: 6/4/2008 | Author:

Lance K. Stell, PhD Biography

Charles A. Dana Professor of Philosophy, Davidson College
Pro to the question "Should Euthanasia or Physician-Assisted Suicide Be Legal?"

“One way for physicians to assist suicide, while remaining within their professional capacities, is for them to write orders that withhold or withdraw life-sustaining treatment at patient request. The latter claim implies only that it is possible for physicians to assist suicide by acting within their well-recognized authority to abate life-sustaining treatment at patient request. It does not imply that their abating life-sustaining treatment at patient request amounts to, constitutes, is equivalent to assisted suicide. To refute my modest claim, one would have to prove that it is not possible for physicians to assist suicide in this way. Further, I will argue that physician-assisted suicide (already effectively decriminalized) should be fully and formally decriminalized. It should not be ‘legalized-but-strictly-regulated’ unless such a regime would extend to medically managed, physician-facilitated deaths generally.”

“Physician-Assisted Suicide: To Decriminalize or to Legalize, That is the Question,” Physician Assisted Suicide: Expanding the Debate, 1998

Theoretical Expertise Ranking:
Individuals with MDs, JDs, PhDs, or equivalent advanced degrees in fields relevant to end-of-life issues. Also top-level government officials (such as foreign leaders, US presidents, Founding Fathers, Supreme Court Justices, members of legislative bodies, cabinet members, military leaders, etc.) with positions relevant to end-of-life.
Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Charles A. Dana Professor of Philosophy, Davidson College
  • Director, Medical Humanities Program, Davidson College
  • Medical Ethicist, Carolinas Medical Center
  • Member, Board of Directors, Bioethics Resource Group
  • Member, Committee on Ethical and Judicial Affairs, North Carolina Medical Society
  • Member, 26th Judicial District’s Grievance Committee, North Carolina Bar Association
  • Recipient of the North Carolina Medical Society John Huske Anderson Award, 2005
  • PhD, Political Philosophy, University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, 1974
  • BA, Philosophy, Hope College, 1966
  • None found
Quoted in:
  1. Is There a Moral Difference between Passive Euthanasia and Physician-Assisted Suicide?