People sell their bodies (generally) or body parts,(nearly always) because they can't see other viable ways to break out of poverty.
But there are differences.
- A prostitute can deal directly with the client, but there has to be a sophisticated infrastructure available to remove and transplant a kidney.
- Even if you give away your kidney, the recipient still pays a lot.
- You can only sell a kidney once.
There is a black market in kidneys. Kidneys from people so poor that they will sell one to a stranger for as little as $1000. And doctors who transplant those kidneys to people paying $100,000 or more. The doctors argue it's their moral obligation to save a person's life.
I'd note that I don't think the comparison to prostitution came up in the movie, but it
seemed a logical one after I saw the movie.
|Surgeon - image source|
|Recipient- image source|
This is not a preachy or academic film, it's more like a good investigative reporting movie that deals with a hard subject in a straightforward way. It challenges us to think beyond black and and white and to deal with ethical ambiguities.
At the end, the movie doesn't exactly endorse it, but it does mention there is legislation pending that would regulate selling organs.
That may be a short term solution, but the real issue, it seems to me, is a world of some rich and lots of poor, poor people who are willing to risk long term health problems for the chance to get their families into what, for them, is decent housing.
Another question I had was what percent of people, say in the US, are registered donors - people who sign up when they renew their driver's license or register online? How would increasing the number of donors shorten the waiting lists for kidneys?
|Sellers - image source|
Tales From The Organ Trade is one of the documentaries in competition and will show:
5:00 PM Sat, Dec 07 AK Exp small
11:00 AM Sat, Dec 14 AK Exp large
[Note: I saw this film because their publicist offered me a private link online to see it before the festival. It was an unsolicited email.]
[This is a repost because there was errant text in the middle of the original which I could not find in the code.]