January 28, 2014

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Because that’s what I was worried about: hordes of doctors tearing out internal organs to play Hacky Sack with in the hospital parking lot.

Winter’s essay is no Swiftian “modest proposal,” with kidneys standing in for braised Irish babies. Even if it were, allow me to pass along one of my personal mottoes, one that’s helped me avoid heartaches too numerous to count:

“No one is ever ‘just kidding.’”

Her name makes her sound married, but I still want to set up Professor Winter on a date with Judith Jarvis Thomson. According to The New York Times, this “philosopher” has concocted the following argument in favor of allowing abortion in the event of rape:

[I]f someone kidnapped you and connected your kidneys to those of someone who would die unless the connection were maintained for the next nine months, you would hardly be obliged to go along with this. How can we require a woman pregnant by a rapist to do essentially the same thing?

Again, thank God for our academic betters. I didn’t know that “philosophers” had deemed internal organs to be the moral equivalent of autonomous sentient beings or that said organs are forcibly injected into each of our bodies at knifepoint. That’s what I get for skipping biology class.

And whom else can we turn to when we need to make life-or-death legislative decisions based upon weird variations of already weird and widely debunked urban legends?

“Will this proposal be taken seriously by anyone in a position to change things?” Winter “asks” with an almost audible sigh. “Of course not. But extreme solutions to extreme problems are perfectly valid. Most importantly, we need to address the kidney shortage. It’s time to stop being nice and start saving lives.”

As with those tedious advocates of “voluntary human extinction,” every sane person’s automatic response to an article like Professor Winter’s is to chirp, “You first!”

Oddly enough, for someone as clearly exercised about this alleged kidney shortage as Winter is, nowhere in his essay does he mention having voluntarily donated one of his own.

Maybe that part got cut out.



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