Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Do We Own Our Organs?

That's right, do we, each of us, own our organs? Do we own ourselves? If we own ourselves then surely we own our organs. If we own our organs, can we sell them or donate them to others? We can donate them, for sure, but what about selling them? Why can't we? Several thousand people die every year waiting for organ donation. For kidney's, over 3,000 people die each year. That's how many people died at the hands of Osama bin Ladin on September 11, 2001. Why so many? Why the shortage of organs?

Well, economics tells us that when the price of something is kept artificially low, demand increases as supply withers. And since the price of organs is kept at $0, the result is death. People die because other people can't sell them one of their extra kidneys. If they could, I'm confident that organ shortages would disappear and lives would be saved. Such is the case in Iran, of all places. In Iran, it's legal to sell one of your organs, and they have no organ shortages. Why isn't it legal here? Everyone else profits in the procedure except the one who gives up the organ. Here to really demonstrate all that's involved in the fight to make organ selling legal is Reason.tv's host Drew Carey:

Organ Transplant - Kideys For Sale, Drew Carey, Reason.tv
For a Quicktime HD .mov version, right-click, save-link-as here.


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