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Simply abandon the ‘norm against killing’ to solve organ transplant problem: leading US bioethicists
Life Site News ^ | February 8, 2012 | Hilary White

Posted on 02/08/2012 1:15:20 PM PST by NYer

February 8, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The conundrum faced by the organ transplant industry, that the removal of vital organs kills the “donor,” can be “easily obviated by abandoning the norm against killing,” two leading U.S. bioethicists have said. In an article titled, “What Makes Killing Wrong?” appearing in last month’s Journal of Medical Ethics, the authors have moved the argument forward by admitting that the practice of vital organ donation ignores “traditional” medical ethics.

“Traditional medical ethics embraces the norm that doctors … must not kill their patients. This norm is often seen as absolute and universal. In contrast, we have argued that killing by itself is not morally wrong, although it is still morally wrong to cause total disability.”

Traditional ethicists have responded, warning that this stream of thought, now common in the medical community, will ultimately undermine the right of anyone to life or the protection of law, and will annihilate public trust in the medical profession.

“If this dreadful doctrine is permitted and practised it is impossible to conjure up the degradation to which it will lead,” said Anthony Ozimic, communications manager of the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC). A physician “has but to certify his patients as unproductive and he receives the command to kill.”

Walter Sinnott-Armstrong a Duke University bioethicist and Franklin G. Miller, an ethicist with the National Institutes of Health, the federal health authority in the US, admitted that patients who are routinely declared dead for purposes of organ “harvesting” are in fact alive and that removing their organs kills them.

Pro-life objectors to the practice of “non-heart beating organ donation” have long argued that it is tantamount to murdering helpless patients, reducing human persons to mere organ farms. The article proposes, however, that this is simply not a problem. Killing a patient who has lost all functional “abilities” and autonomy, “cannot disrespect her autonomy, because she has no autonomy left. It also cannot be unfair to kill her if it does her no harm.”

“Killing by itself is not morally wrong,” the authors said, “although it is still morally wrong to cause total disability.” The problem with killing is “not that the act causes loss of life or consciousness but rather that the act causes loss of all remaining abilities.”

Ozimic called the paper “obnoxious” and warned that its authors have “forgotten the lessons of the 20th century,” referring to the utilitarianism-based eugenics programmes of the pre-war Nazi government.

Ozimic quoted the famous 1941 sermon of Clemens von Galen, Cardinal Archbishop of – known as the “Lion of Munster” for his opposition to the Nazi euthanasia programme: “Once admit the right to kill unproductive persons…  then none of us can be sure of his life.”

Ozimic said that if it is allowed to continue the concept will spell the end of our current understanding of medicine as doing good for human persons.

“We shall be at the mercy of any committee that can put a man on the list of unproductives. There will be no police protection, no court to avenge the murder and inflict punishment upon the murderer. Who can have confidence in any doctor?”

But the article’s authors admit that the situation is already grave from the point of view of traditional medical ethics. The so-called “dead donor rule,” they say, is already “routinely violated” in transplant practice anyway.

In order to be consistent with “traditional medical ethics” the practice of organ transplants, already a multi-billion dollar international medical industry, would have to be stopped immediately. But stopping organ transplants on the mere grounds that it kills people, they said, would be “extremely harmful and unreasonable from an ethical point of view.”

Ozimic critiqued the paper, saying, “According to some doctor, or because of the decision of some committee, they have no longer a right to live because they are ‘unproductive citizens’.

“The opinion is that since they can no longer make money, they are obsolete machines, comparable with some old cow that can no longer give milk or some horse that has gone lame. What is the lot of unproductive machines and cattle? They are destroyed.” But men and women, Ozimic said, are neither machines nor cattle who can be discarded when they no longer serve someone else’s needs. 

“Here we are dealing with human beings, with our neighbours, brothers and sisters, the poor and invalids . . . unproductive - perhaps! But have they, therefore, lost the right to live? Have you or I the right to exist only because we are ‘productive’?”

Shocking as it may sound to the layman’s ears, however, the article’s position is not unusual in the bioethics community. The notion that the value of human life is founded upon the individual’s abilities has become run-of-the-mill in universities and, more crucially, in hospital ethics committees. It was popularised by Peter Singer, the professor of ethics at Princeton University, who infamously proposed that parents have the power to convey personhood upon their newborn children and should be allowed to kill them at will.

The fixation on autonomy, one of the three “principles” that utilitarian secular bioethics regards as the ultimate indicators of human value, has driven much of the international pressure for legalised euthanasia. Around the world, secular bioethicists supported the killing of Terri Schindler Schiavo on the grounds that her “autonomy” was permanently impaired.

Experts have noted that this form of bioethics, as distinct from classical, Hippocratic medical ethics, has since the 1970s become the leading stream of thought in most medical organisations in developed countries. The movement has succeeded in legalising euthanasia in the Netherlands and Belgium and assisted suicide in three US states.

In addition to outright euthanasia and legalised assisted suicide, other means of killing patients are sneaking in under the legal radar in response to the demands of autonomy-obsessed Bioethics. “Terminal sedation” and death by dehydration or withdrawal of life-saving drugs and treatments have become common causes of death among elderly and disabled patients in the UK, Canada and across Europe.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Government; Philosophy
KEYWORDS: 2evil4words; 2trackthiscreepdown; bioethics; deatheaters; euthanasia; franklingmiller; franklinmiller; homicidalmaniacs; medicide; organtransplants; sinnottarmstrong

1 posted on 02/08/2012 1:15:31 PM PST by NYer
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To: wagglebee; little jeremiah

Ping!


2 posted on 02/08/2012 1:16:28 PM PST by NYer ("Be kind to every person you meet. For every person is fighting a great battle." St. Ephraim)
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To: NYer

Well, since Dr. Miller and Dr. Armstrong feel that way, how about one of us show up on their doorstep and decide to harvest THEIR organs? After all, why is that morally objectionable?

Idiots.


3 posted on 02/08/2012 1:19:59 PM PST by Arkansas Toothpick
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To: NYer

Simply abandon the ban on compensating donors and their heirs, and the problem would vanish.


4 posted on 02/08/2012 1:20:17 PM PST by Atlas Sneezed (Author of BullionBible.com - Makes You a Precious Metal Expert, Guaranteed.)
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To: NYer
they have no longer a right to live because they are ‘unproductive citizens’

Liberal/progressives better not support this sort of "bio-ethics". They could be slaughtered by the millions.

5 posted on 02/08/2012 1:20:19 PM PST by techcor (I hope Obama succeeds, in being a one term president.)
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To: NYer
Traditional medical ethics embraces the norm that doctors … must not kill their patients. This norm is often seen as absolute and universal.

because the right to life is a God-given natural right.

6 posted on 02/08/2012 1:23:07 PM PST by mjp ((pro-{God, reality, reason, egoism, individualism, natural rights, limited government, capitalism}))
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To: techcor
Liberal/progressives better not support this sort of "bio-ethics". They could be slaughtered by the millions.

Not if we ever get to doing brain transplants...
7 posted on 02/08/2012 1:24:36 PM PST by BikerJoe
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To: NYer

They’ll just have the murders relabeled as “post-birth abortions.”


8 posted on 02/08/2012 1:25:14 PM PST by Jack Hydrazine (It's the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine!)
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To: Arkansas Toothpick

> Well, since Dr. Miller and Dr. Armstrong feel that way,
> how about one of us show up on their doorstep and decide
> to harvest THEIR organs? After all, why is that morally
> objectionable?

You mean, you didn’t know?

Didn’t you realize?

Couldn’t you tell from the dazzling display of genius that they are higher life forms than we are?

We are just untermenschen, to be disposed of at will for the benefit of the ubermenschen class, like Drs. Miller and Armstrong.

To them, we are little more than lab rats to be examined, experimented with, and dissected for their pleasure.


9 posted on 02/08/2012 1:25:40 PM PST by Westbrook (Children do not divide your love, they multiply it.)
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To: NYer
2,700 pages in 0bamacare what does it say about the subject?
10 posted on 02/08/2012 1:27:07 PM PST by TYVets (Pure-Gas.org ..... ethanol free gasoline by state and city)
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To: NYer
"For though they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God or show gratitude. Instead, their thinking became nonsense, and their senseless minds were darkened. ... And because they did not think it worthwhile to acknowledge God, God delivered them over to a worthless mind to do what is morally wrong. They are filled with all unrighteousness, evil, greed, and wickedness. They are full of envy, murder, quarrels, deceit, and malice."
--Rom. 1:21, 28-29
11 posted on 02/08/2012 1:27:31 PM PST by Thane_Banquo
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To: techcor

My thoughts as well. This could easily be used against the OWS crowd.


12 posted on 02/08/2012 1:27:54 PM PST by Teotwawki (To Him be the glory throughout all generations.)
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To: techcor
they have no longer a right to live because they are ‘unproductive citizens’

This is exactly what the Nazis claimed in order to excuse their mistreatment and murder of the mentally-ill, mentally-handicapped, and the elderly.

13 posted on 02/08/2012 1:29:30 PM PST by Thane_Banquo
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To: techcor

“they have no longer a right to live because they are ‘unproductive citizens’”

Those taking welfare, both the rich and the poor, could easily be labeled as ‘unproductive.’


14 posted on 02/08/2012 1:29:54 PM PST by Jack Hydrazine (It's the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine!)
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To: NYer

Now where have I heard that phrase “moving forward” before? And why does it mean going backwards in civilization?


15 posted on 02/08/2012 1:36:17 PM PST by skr (May God confound the enemy)
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To: NYer

I’ve always argued that the left does not view life as intrinsically limited, but as a resource of the state.


16 posted on 02/08/2012 1:38:09 PM PST by Jonty30 (What Islam and secularism have in common is that they are both death cults.)
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To: Westbrook

Sowell points out that “intellectuals” know they won’t get recognized for their brilliance if they simply affirm common sense or common morality.

They have to come up with something bizarre or abhorrent in order to get recognition from their peers.


17 posted on 02/08/2012 1:40:10 PM PST by MrB (The difference between a Humanist and a Satanist - the latter knows whom he's working for)
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To: Beelzebubba
Simply abandon the ban on compensating donors and their heirs, and the problem would vanish.

Bingo! We need to start a Conditional Organ Donation program in this country. I donate my organs with the stipulation that no end recipient will be charged a dime for any medical services related to them. Get a couple million people to sign up for that and they'll start having an absolute cow!


18 posted on 02/08/2012 1:45:07 PM PST by Buckeye McFrog
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To: NYer

I’ve come to believe that braised U.S. bioethicists are quite tasty if served in Bernaise sauce with a nice Côtes du Rhône.
After all, killing people is fine if its for a good cause.

You see, they’ve persuaded me.


19 posted on 02/08/2012 1:48:29 PM PST by LucianOfSamasota (Tanstaafl - its not just for breakfast anymore...)
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To: NYer

It truly is chilling to see what some people will advocate under the premise of “the common good.”


20 posted on 02/08/2012 1:50:02 PM PST by DemforBush (Six o'clock in *Berlin*. They were having lunch in Cleveland.)
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To: NYer

The rise of the organ “donor” gangs....


21 posted on 02/08/2012 1:56:25 PM PST by treetopsandroofs (Had FDR been GOP, there would have been no World Wars, just "The Great War" and "Roosevelt's Wars".)
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To: NYer

first we abandoned morality and now even simple ethics are obstacles to the insane radical left


22 posted on 02/08/2012 1:56:36 PM PST by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Pursue Happiness)
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To: NYer

The novelist Walker Percy saw all this coming 20 years ago. From his comments on his last novel, “The Thanatos Syndrome”:

“I tried to show how, while truth should prevail, it is a disaster when only one kind of truth prevails at the expense of another. If only one kind of truth prevails — the abstract and technical truth of science — then nothing stands in the way of a demeaning of and a destruction of human life for what appear to be reasonable short-term goals.”


23 posted on 02/08/2012 1:58:14 PM PST by Stosh
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To: NYer
"The conundrum faced by the organ transplant industry, that the removal of vital organs kills the “donor,” can be “easily obviated by abandoning the norm against killing"

Geez . . . I wonder to what this is leading us . . .

24 posted on 02/08/2012 1:58:33 PM PST by YHAOS (you betcha!)
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To: techcor

They’ve already managed to convince a substantial portion of the population that to kill one’s own unborn children is an inalienable RIGHT....


25 posted on 02/08/2012 1:58:33 PM PST by treetopsandroofs (Had FDR been GOP, there would have been no World Wars, just "The Great War" and "Roosevelt's Wars".)
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To: NYer
“Traditional medical ethics embraces the norm that doctors … must not kill their patients.

Gee, what an old-fashioned, out-of-date, un-post-modern concept.

How about we do away with the norm that patients should pay doctors for their services? Or that the medical profession is somehow respectable? Or that men and women who save human lives are in any way worth more to a society than the men and women who clean our toilets?

Yes, let's discard all those old, worn-out ethics and replace them with a new hierarchy of enlightened, humanist, utilitarian values! After all, what does God know?

26 posted on 02/08/2012 2:33:27 PM PST by IronJack (=)
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To: NYer
Where this leads:

Video

27 posted on 02/08/2012 2:33:47 PM PST by Disambiguator
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To: Thane_Banquo
So ....

Did St. Paul get a look at XXI Century America?

28 posted on 02/08/2012 2:39:27 PM PST by ArrogantBustard (Western Civilization is Aborting, Buggering, and Contracepting itself out of existence.)
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To: techcor
Liberal/progressives better not support this sort of "bio-ethics". They could be slaughtered by the millions.

I'm not so sure I would want a transplant from the OWS crowd.

29 posted on 02/08/2012 2:42:51 PM PST by Drill Thrawl (The damage is too extensive. Burn it down and start over.)
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To: Thane_Banquo
You forgot 26-27.

"For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:
And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet."

30 posted on 02/08/2012 2:47:36 PM PST by sam_paine (X .................................)
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To: Jack Hydrazine
Those taking welfare, both the rich and the poor, could easily be labeled as ‘unproductive.’

They do produce Democratic votes.

31 posted on 02/08/2012 2:47:53 PM PST by Drill Thrawl (The damage is too extensive. Burn it down and start over.)
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To: NYer

Walter Sinnott-Armstrong a Duke University bioethicist and Franklin G. Miller, an ethicist with the National Institutes of Health - start with them.


32 posted on 02/08/2012 2:52:50 PM PST by Ancesthntr (Bibi to Odumbo: Its not going to happen.)
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To: NYer

A good execution method. Put the criminal under, remove all useful parts, drain the blood for transfusions, discard ramainder. Much better than poisoning or cooking recyclable body parts.


33 posted on 02/08/2012 2:58:57 PM PST by JimRed (Excising a cancer before it kills us waters the Tree of Liberty! TERM LIMITS, NOW AND FOREVER!)
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To: Stosh

The novelist Larry Niven coined the term “organlegger” about forty years ago (early 1970s). In one story, even a traffic ticket could get you broken down for parts.


34 posted on 02/08/2012 3:14:28 PM PST by Cruising Speed
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To: techcor
they have no longer a right to live because they are ‘unproductive citizens’

Since I am retired, I guess that makes me an "unproductive citizen." Time to load some more pmags.

35 posted on 02/08/2012 3:20:07 PM PST by SVTCobra03 (You can never have enough friends, horsepower or ammunition.)
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To: NYer

(With just minimal editing, this could be utterly hilarious, while horrifying those who proposed it. Edits in ALL CAPS.)

The conundrum faced by the organ transplant industry, that the removal of vital organs kills the “donor,” can be “easily obviated by abandoning the norm against killing BLACK PEOPLE,” two leading U.S. bioethicists have said.

In an article titled, “What Makes Killing BLACK PEOPLE Wrong?” appearing in last month’s Journal of Medical Ethics, the authors have moved the argument forward by admitting that the practice of vital organ donation ignores “traditional” medical ethics.

“Traditional medical ethics embraces the norm that doctors ... must not kill PEOPLE JUST BECAUSE THEY ARE BLACK. This norm is often seen as absolute and universal. In contrast, we have argued that killing BLACK PEOPLE by itself is not morally wrong, although it is still morally wrong to cause total disability, MAKING BLACK PEOPLE PERMANENT WELFARE RECIPIENTS.”

The problem with killing BLACK PEOPLE is “not that the act causes loss of life or consciousness but rather that the act causes loss of all THEIR ABILITY TO PLAY SPORTS.”

But the article’s authors admit that the situation is already grave from the point of view of traditional medical ethics. The so-called “BLACK donor rule,” they say, is already “routinely violated” in transplant practice anyway.

In order to be consistent with “traditional medical ethics” the practice of organ transplants FROM DRUNK OR DRUGGED BLACK PEOPLE, already a multi-billion dollar international medical industry, would have to be stopped immediately.

But stopping THE TAKING OF ORGANS FROM BLACK PEOPLE on the mere grounds that it kills BLACK people, they said, would be “extremely harmful and unreasonable from an ethical point of view.”


36 posted on 02/08/2012 3:26:13 PM PST by yefragetuwrabrumuy
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To: GeronL
Exactly. The pall of evil spreading over the planet is almost palpable.
37 posted on 02/08/2012 3:32:06 PM PST by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both)
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To: NYer

I think... we did not win WWII. We did not win the Cold War. At best it was a delaying action. Apparently Mankind has a “kill switch” designed so that if we got too big for our britches, we would self-destruct. It’s like a swirling storm of pure devilishness out there now and there seems to be no way for the moral majority to put these people back on their heels.


38 posted on 02/08/2012 3:33:27 PM PST by ichabod1 (Mr. Gingrich)
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To: BenLurkin

Yep. How long before eugenics is said to be perfectly acceptable?


39 posted on 02/08/2012 4:04:23 PM PST by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Pursue Happiness)
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Dr Mengele was just ahead of his time. I don't think the term "bioethecist" had been invented back then. But these guys must look upon Mengele as an idol, as does Seeger at Princeton, I'm sure.

Mark

40 posted on 02/08/2012 5:16:11 PM PST by MarkL (Do I really look like a guy with a plan?)
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To: Jonty30
I’ve always argued that the left does not view life as intrinsically limited, but as a resource of the state.

You are 100% correct. Something that leftist don't seem to understand when they quote Marx is the context. If you include the context, their favorite quote actually reads, "From each, according to his abilities, in the service of The State, to each, according to his needs, while serving The State." Everything you produce must meet the needs of "The State," and "The State" will decide how much you must produce. And what you receive will be the minimum to keep up your production. Once you fall behind, you will be eliminated, since you're actually taking up valuable resources that could be of better use to "The State" by being granted to more productive workers."

They don't realize that perfect Marxism and Communism DO exist, just not where humans are involved. Perfect examples of Communism and Marxism are ant and bee hives. There's no such thing as a non-working "member." The closest thing the hives have are the drones, which are driven from the hives to die once the queen has been fertilized. From then on, every one and every resource serves "The Hive."

Mark

41 posted on 02/08/2012 5:25:51 PM PST by MarkL (Do I really look like a guy with a plan?)
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42 posted on 02/08/2012 5:30:32 PM PST by TheOldLady (FReepmail me to get ON or OFF the ZOT LIGHTNING ping list)
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To: ichabod1
I think... we did not win WWII. We did not win the Cold War. At best it was a delaying action. Apparently Mankind has a “kill switch” designed so that if we got too big for our britches, we would self-destruct. It’s like a swirling storm of pure devilishness out there now and there seems to be no way for the moral majority to put these people back on their heels.

You may be onto something. Or maybe just on something.

Anyway, maybe our civilization, like others in history, grows old, decrepit, and ultimately dies of some opportunistic infection. Perhaps "civilizational telomeres" are at work.

43 posted on 02/08/2012 9:24:33 PM PST by Erasmus (Able was I ere I saw this crappy little island.)
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