The old adage “you can’t take it with you” is never truer than when it comes to the topic of organ donation. While you can take your organs with you, what purpose does it server? Wouldn’t it be more worthwhile to donate your organs or your body to science in order to help save a person’s life or further medical research? It really is the ultimate act of self sacrifice a person can make in the end.
The choice of whether to be an organ donor or not is fairly obvious in most people’s minds. However this debate is not about the merits of organ donation, it is about whether we should have the choice to be organ donors. Moving to an opt-out system is one step closer to taking that choice away from the individual. While you can actively choose to opt-out of organ donation the initial choice will have already been made for you. Forcing people to actively state their intentions is intrusive and inconvenient.
While there are dozens of good reasons to declare yourself an organ donor there are an equal number of reasons one can cite against it. The point is, why should someone have to actively choose to not be an organ donor. Surely the process of opting out of organ donation will involve some complicated paper work at some dilapidated government office in some inconvenient part of town that operates restricted hours forcing the average person to waste precious time to process the change in status. When you do choose to fill out your paperwork saying you don’t want to donate your body to science there will undoubtedly be a plethora of propaganda extolling the virtues of organ donation and vilifying the selfish individuals who choose to opt-out.
Why should anyone be subjected to the inconvenience that the whole opt-out process will entail? Will tricking people into donating their organs by opting them in without their full knowledge really solve anything? More likely it will result in angry family members facing difficult situations during tragic times, finding their love ones bodies being picked over by scientists turned vultures in an attempt to harvest organs and tissues from the body as the family is trying to deal with the grief of the loss and prepare to memorialize their loved one.
Given all of the private areas of our life the government has already intruded into there are few people in society today who welcome further intrusion, especially into such a private matter. If a person is truly interested in being an organ donor they will go through the process of registering as such or ensuring their driver’s license has the proper indications on it. Making the choice to donate your body to science is one that should be reserved by you, not by some politician who is catering to the latest lobbyist who is lining their pocket with campaign contributions.
Every day politicians dream up new and creative ways to strip us of a little bit more of our freedom. In this new age of terrorism we take so many of the intrusions to our private live in stride in the name of homeland security. With the breakthroughs already made in government intrusion some control over our personal lives must be left in the hands of the people. The choice of organ donation is a very private and personal matter; a matter that should be left in the hands of the donator, not the government. By all means do the right thing and help save another life, but do it because you want to and because you feel it is the right thing to do. Don’t do it because the government has decided it’s what you should do.