So long as we think of our bodies in terms of replaceable components, the harvesting of fetal bodies will continue.
Doctor, Doctor, will I die?
Yes, my child, And so shall I.
Forgive me for withdrawing from the outrage over recent videos released by the Center for Medical Progress. Don’t think I am not repulsed by them. Absolutely, I am. But what inhibits me from declaring my own revulsion is a disquieting belief that whether Planned Parenthood is defunded elides the true issue. Our righteous censure attends mainly to the symptoms of a disease we are loathe to cure.
That hidden root disorder is our denial of mortality. Modern technical prowess drives the defiance with a welcome roster of desperate appliances, from pacemakers and dialysis machines to artificial hearts and lungs. Add an obsession with fitness and wellness, the Castor and Pollox of holistic mythology.
We keep finitude at bay in a frenzy of diet-and-exercise regimes, herbal body wraps, and probiotic capsules from Life Force International. Hit the right formula, and we can live forever. Or pretend to.
There is a dark side to modernity’s variant of ancient quests for the elixir of life. On a policy level, there is the very real temptation to divert resources from adequate care for all onto splendid visions of medical progress that advantage only a few. But that is a different discussion for another day. Here, let me stay with the framework of values that fuels the social and medical ardor for organ transplants.
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