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Organ Donation
Across the world, there are different methods used for organ donation. They can loosely be grouped into two types: opt-in donation and opt-out donation.
In the UK, it is an opt-in system, which means that your organs will only be used if you hold a "Donor Card" or have expressed such an intention to your next of kin, who ultimately have the last say in such matters. In opt-out systems, the reverse is true; your organs are deemed to be available unless you have expressly stated that your body must be left untouched.
My own (very strong) preference is an opt-out system. We shouldn't be forced to carry a card, or be forced to have a (frankly uncomfortable) conversation with our next of kin about something so morbid as our organ availability. When our death occurs, it is difficult enough for our loved ones without adding the trauma of a conversation with an organ-donation consultant.
Opt-out systems result in a much wider availability of organs for the still-living and still-suffering, who are left waiting their turn on a list that might well not come to an end before their terminal illness.
Above and beyond an ordinary opt-out system, I would go one step further: anyone who decides to opt-out of being an organ donor will also find themself opting out of the opportunity of being the recipient of an organ. It would take a very selfish person, indeed, to take that option. And it would be the fairest possible system for the donation and receipt of organs, after all. It would include a fail-safe system that would prevent self-centered poorly people from opting in when they had the need; the opt-in system only takes effect after the same length of time as they were opted-out.
Of course, there are those who have religious beliefs that forbid donations, e.g. Jehovas Witnesses who believe that they should enter heaven with all of their body parts and nobody else's. This includes their blood, so keep that in mind the next time a pair of them knock on your door. Tell them that you're a blood donor and they'll quickly scoot along to the next house.
A sad side-effect of this bizarre belief system is that they inflict such practices upon their children. The opt-out system that I'm proposing would take effect at the age of 16 and upwards, with the state deciding what happens before that; the health of the child being put before the beliefs of the parents.
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