The question is, what are your views on organ donation?
Here are the pros and cons:
- In the case of the dead donor, the organ(s) are used to save lives when they would otherwise be useless
- In the case of the reciever, he will not only get an extention of life, but also an improved quality, as a new organ will help him stay away from mechanical ad chemical interventions to his health
- Parties involved also benefit as the family of the donor feel happy to help and save lives, just as the recipient and the family feel grateful and indebted
- In the case of body donation, it can be used to advance science (or art).
- The basic con is religion. Jehovah's Witness and Shintoism are two significant religions opposed to organ donation. In Jehovah's Witness, it is not a prohibition on organ donation per se, but on blood transfusion. But since all organ donations require blood transfusion, organ donation is technically prohibited. In Shinto on the other hand, a corpse is considered impure, and intervention to a dead person is considered bad luck.
- The second one is a slight "misunderstanding" and is "pseudo-ethical" and can be easily resolved. In the process of organ removal among dead persons, the body is often held in life support to minimize tissue damage. To families and friends, this may seem disturbing as there will be semblance of life still, even though organ extraction requires that the person is brain dead.
- The most compelling reason against organ donation is not on the individual level but sociological. These are completely different from the "voluntary donor" argument as discussed in the "Pros", so care and attention should be given when replying to and discussing these. These can be broken down into three.
First is the case among live organ donors usually in poor thirdworld countries, Indonesia, Brazil, South Africa, Philippines, Thailand, India, Pakistan, etc. Even though the organ donation is voluntary, some argue that there is no genuine choice becuase on the larger sociological level, this practice, even some call syndicate, takes advantage of the "volunteer's", usually unemployed, poor economic condition, and the decision to volunteer is not natural. The volunteers are "forced to choose" economic benefit (pay is handsome) at the expense of health, usually one of the kidneys. Moreover, research supports that even this economic benefit is illusory, as it encourages dependence among people who'd rather donate an organ than work, and it would in fact put them deeper in poverty as they won't have the necessary knowledge to make their gain sustainable and would revert back to their old lazy ways.
The second reveals a much darker side to this phenomenon. There are plenty of individual reports but not much thorough research and investigation, but many deaths and reports of being missing, especially amonng children in third world countries, are suspected to be killed to have their organs extracted to be given to rich people in the US and other first world countries.
The third is what we can call the "China situation". In China, prisoners, whether or not voluntary, are automatic organ donors. In cases of prisoners in death sentence (in China, death sentence is done by shooting the prisoner in the head), they are immediately brought to the hospital after they are executed for the organs to be harvested. The complications with these arise because the date of execution (in China, death sentence prisoners know the date of their execution only during the date itself) may be adjusted, postponed or cut short, depending on the needs of the market.
These are the pros and cons of organ donation, with two specific subtopics. I hope we can have a good discussion and exchange of ideas on this. There are a few polls below to aide the discussion. Feel free to elaborae on your vote on your posts.