Friday, February 17, 2006

Vulture Culture

Paul McKeever on the Organ donor debate currently brewing in Ontario:

Freedom Party of Ontario leader Paul McKeever today condemned NDP MPP Peter Kormos' private member's bill which, if passed, would presume a dead or dying person has consented to the harvesting of his organs.

"As it has been described, the bill, if made law, would violate both the liberty and the property of individuals", says McKeever.

"It would violate the liberty and the property of every living adult of sound mind by requiring that adults take defensive action to prevent the state from seizing their body parts.

"It would also violate the property rights of every individual because, in principle, ones body parts, after death, should be considered a part of ones estate. Control over the use of those body parts should be in accordance with ones wishes. Ones body parts are property and have value. That value belongs solely to ones estate, not to the state.

"Finally, in a civilized society, the law presumes that those lacking the capacity to reason also lack the capacity to consent. Accordingly, in a civilized society, a dying person who lacks the capacity to consent to the state harvesting and seizing of his organs must be presumed not to have consented. To allow the state to presume consent in such a situation would be no different in principle from allowing the state to presume that a brain-dead woman has consented to the use of her body for sexual or reproductive purposes."

"With all due respect to Mr. Kormos, with whose views on civil liberties I often agree, this bill should be dropped. That it would help those in need does not excuse the vile nature of violating a human being's liberty and property. Were need sufficient to make body-part harvesting righteous in the absence of consent, there would be no moral reason not to snatch kidneys from healthy individuals by force. This bill is no less revolting in terms of its moral implications.

"Addressing the shortage of organs need not involve a step away from civility and toward a Vulture Culture. Legislation is indeed needed, but it should be legislation that increases the supply of available organs by ensuring that ones body parts are an asset of value in ones estate. Indeed, for the many poor who may die with children, ones body parts may be the only thing of monetary value in ones estate.

"The bottom line is this. It's your body, they are your organs, they have value, and that value should go to whomever you want to have it on your terms. It is morally reprehensible for the government to deprive you of control over your organs or to deprive your estate the value of those organs.

"Recognize a person's body to be a valuable, sellable, part of his or her estate, and there will be no shortage of available organs. Supplies will increase immediately and, as a result, the value of organs will decrease and more lives will be affordably saved."

3 comments:

Ayn Steyn said...

Looks like there's at least one principled party in Ontario. I like the looks of this Freedom Party.

Pretty sad that the NDP already wants your pay cheque, and now.....your body parts!

MapMaster said...

Check out their platform. A very sensible and pragmatic approach.

Pietr said...

When you know you are dying, just take so much poison that every organ in your body is wrecked.

Problem solved!