Harvesting Bodies in France by Brian Simpson

This is one way the future could go! There is a great concern in the medical community about the shortages of human organs for transplant purposes. Some advocate a free market trade in organs (i.e. the freedom to sell a kidney), while others hope that advances in science, such as the recent creation of a pig with human cells, could lead to new organs being grown from human stem cells:

France, however, passed a law that took effect on January 1, 2017, that gives “presumed consent” to organ donation. Thus, everyone is presumed to be an organ donor, unless they object and enter their names on a National Rejection Register:

Regardless of the issue of increased numbers of organs for transplantation (25-30 percent higher than countries with opt-in systems), the ethical concerns are immense. Not only are there issues of informed consent for children and the mentally incompetent, but such systems remove the rights of the next of kin to make such decisions. There is also a worry that going into hospital critically ill could well become a death sentence as a culture of “letting die to get the organs" develops.
All of this places us on the slippery slope to the Brave New World; we already have reached 1984, well back in 1984.



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Tuesday, 11 August 2020
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