Sunday, June 25, 2006

Free-market kidneys

What would happen if one would put out a kidney to sell on the free market? How much money would you take for it? An article in the LA Times asks the exact same questions. It raised some interesting questions for me.

Now, I am a steadfast libertarian, and I believe in the principle of self-ownership, including my own property. One property I have a right to more than anything else is my body, and, my kidney is a part of my body. If I want to sell my kidney to the free market, I have no reason why I shouldn't.

This article explains the benefit of selling one's own kidney. Now, I personally choose to keep my kidneys to myself. But, that's my opinion, and I have a right to my opinion. Others see it differently than me. Should my belief impose upon others? Absolutely not! I have a right to do with my body, and each individual has a right to do with one's body, but I have no right to impose upon others, and vise versa.

In this article, some people want to act like me. Others only want to give kidneys to family and/or friends. While others will give kidneys to a perfect stranger. That is their individual choice. Now, if someone I love or I care about started on a dialysis machine, and my kidney is a perfect fit, I probably would give it to him/her; the question is how much do I care for this person.

But society frowns on donating a kidney to a stranger, especially if you are healthy. Doctors don't want to give kidneys without a good reason first. Family and friends frown on it, too. But, there is one important fact: my kidneys are not the doctors, family, nor friends. My kidneys are mine alone, and I alone make the decision on what to do with my kidneys.

The article said, "The most obvious way to increase the supply of any scarce [is] paying more for it", and they are exactly right. I would be motivated to sell my kidney than to give it. And the recipient would love to buy a kidney than to be hooked up three times a week or more to a dialysis machine. But federal law makes transferring kidneys for money illegal, so the buyer and buyee can't buy. What a waste.

Like I said it before, I believe in individual liberty and personal responsibility. You can be urged to take responsibility with you own decisions. But, if you are willing to give or sell your kidney, and that recipient wants to receive or buy, and the money (if applicable) is mutual, the government should get out of the way.


At 11:00 PM, Blogger Apollo Hospital said...

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At 5:22 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

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At 3:16 AM, Blogger Brandy Lucas said...

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