Would Dr. Jack Kevorkian be consider biased?Would Dr. Jack Kevorkian be consider biased?

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catd1115 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I'm glad that some of the above posts asked about your question itself. I'm reading it as this: Is Dr. Jack Kevorkian biased in favor of Euthanasia? or Why is Dr Kevorkian in favor of Euthanasia?

I would say that maybe we can't know the answer without really hearing he himself speak about Euthanasia. I think a bias is based on personal feelings and experience rather than knowledge or education. Is "Dr. Death" in favor of Euthanasia because his skills as a Doctor tells him that it is a sound and better choice or is he in favor of Euthanasia because he is empathetic to the suffering of his patients and wants to do what he can. An idea based in feeling is a bias, an idea based in facts is not ( it is an opinion, but not a bias)

Interesting Question!

litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Anyone who strongly supports a certain point of view is biased.  Bias is an opinion a person has.  Since Dr. Kevorkian was willing to go to jail for his beliefs, he would be considered biased on the subject of euthanasia, or doctor-assisted suicide.  In fact, his nickname is "Dr. Death!"

Dr. Kevorkian has been an outspoken proponent of doctor-assisted suicide.  Doctor-assisted suicide is when a doctor gives a patient who is terminally ill and in a great deal of pain certain drugs to hasten his or her death.  Kevorkian was put on trial four times for assisted suicide.  He was acquitted three times and the fourth trial ended in a mistrial.  Anyone willing to keep doing the same thing after being put on trial three times is definitely biased!


pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Can you tell us a bit more about what you are asking?  As Post #2 rightly points out, everyone has biases.  So I do not think there would be any point in asking whether Kervorkian is biased.

Are you asking if he is biased in his approach to the issue of euthanasia?  If so, Post #2 may well be right.  However, you might also argue that he is not biased but has simply made up his mind on the issue.

The difference there may or may not exist...  I would say that bias is unthinking adherence to a given idea.  If Kervorkian's adherence to the idea is considered rather than unthinking then perhaps he is not biased.

But I am not satisfied that this is really what you are asking.  Is it?

accessteacher eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Well, Iam building on the helpful definition provided in #3 about bias, I would say that those who hold an unthinking adherence to the idea that euthanasia would definitely consider good old "Dr. Death" as being biased, but by so doing they hold themselves open to the same charge. I think in reality that we are all biased because of our different experiences, beliefs, and outlooks on life. Euthanasia is an extremely emotive issue that we all probably hold strong beliefs about. Therefore, those who oppose it will argue that Dr. Kevorkian will be biased, because they think that he will not have thought through his views.

kapokkid eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I think it would be very difficult to discuss in a meaningful way a Dr. Kevorkian that isn't heavily biased, but you might spend time looking at how this bias developed and grew.  I am guessing that as a child or even during medical school he didn't necessarily plan on helping people end their lives painlessly.  But I would guess there were a number of events and discussions and things that helped lead him to the point where he is now, very heavily biased towards euthanasia being legal and acceptable.

mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

There is an interesting and fairly well documented film of Dr. Kevorkian (played by Al Pacino) that offers some insights on Kevorkian's beliefs. 

Ironically, we may find in the future with the exhorbitant costs involved in sustaining life for those who have no hope of recovery that the perspective on Euthanasia may change.

litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Yes, he is biased on the issue of assisted suicide.  I think everyone knows how he feels about it.  He feels so strongly that people should be able to get the assistance of a doctor to kill themselves that he continued to practice assisted suicides at the risk of going to jail, and did go to jail.