Do you think Ms. Robaczynski killed Mr. Gessner? Why or why not?

Do you think Ms. Robaczynski killed Mr. Gessner? Why or why not?.

  1. Do you think Ms. Robaczynski killed Mr. Gessner? Why or why not?

Ms. Robaczynski killed Mr. Gessner. Murder is defined as the intentional killing of an individual. In this case, the act of disconnecting Mr. Gessner’s machine was deliberate and also the main cause of death. Had she not disconnected the machine, Mr. Gessner would probably not have died. Her actions equate to mercy killing since she felt helpless to do so considering the patient’s condition. It is, however, important to note that just like murder, mercy killing is the deliberate termination of life. She also felt the patient had no hope for recovery and would be better off dead. Though she felt like she was acting in the patient’s best interest, it was not morally right since the principle of natural death was defined. Moreover, the fact that the patient was not in a position to state whether they wanted to live or die further raises concern. Ms. Robaczynski assumed that Mr. Gessner was going to die anyway. However, this was not a valid assumption since there are circumstances whereby terminally ill people have recovered when it is least expected. Also to consider is the fact that the patient had not refused treatment. It is possible that Mr. Gessner was hopeful that he would fight through but then his dreams were cut short by Ms. Robaczynski’s actions. Any other form of death besides natural death is not justifiable because there is the benefit of the doubt that corrective measures could have been taken to avoid death. If mercy killing was not murder, then the legality of such an action would not be debatable as it stands. It would be acceptable globally since it would be morally and ethically acceptable.



  1. Would you view Ms. Robaczynski actions differently if Mr. Gessner had asked to be disconnected from his respirator? Why or why not?

I would not view Ms. Robaczynski actions differently because her actions would be a form of assisted suicide. In this scenario, Ms. Robaczynski would be providing Mr. Gessner with the means to die hence facilitating his death. In other words, she would still have actively participated in the death of Mr. Gessner. I would also argue that such a patient had ample time to end their own life when they still had the time or rather when they were not yet terminally ill. It would, therefore, be improper for them to wait till they are critically ill for them to ask someone else to assist them in ending their own life. In the same way, it is morally wrong to kill someone, similarly, it is wrong to assist someone in ending their life. There are also other ways through which Mr. Gessner would have been assisted. For instance, he would have been counseled to take his illness more positively hence eliminating the chances of assisted suicide. There are also high chances that Mr. Gessner would be making the wrong decision due to lack of adequate information concerning his illness. This is to say that if Ms. Robaczynski would have agreed to disconnect him from his respirator, she would still have played a role in facilitating his untimely death. In a way, she would have made him vulnerable. As a nurse, she would also have breached her ethical and moral code of conduct which warrants her to protect and uphold life and not to terminate life. Finally, she would have dehumanized the patient hence leading to loss of life which still equated to murder.

Do you think Ms. Robaczynski killed Mr. Gessner? Why or why not?

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