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Sally Satel’s Organ for Sale

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An Analysis of passion: Sally Satel’s “Organs for Sale” Sally Satel is an American psychiatrist based in Washington DC. She is a lecturer at the Yale University School of Medicine, the W.H. Brady Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and author. Books written by Satel include P.C. M.D.: How Political Correctness is Corrupting Medicine and Drug Treatment: The Case for Coercion Her articles have been published in The New Republic, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, and in scholarly publications like Policy Review on topics including psychiatry and addiction. Satel also serves on the advisory committee of the Center for Mental Health Services of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. After being diagnosed in 2004 with chronic renal failure, Virginia Postrel, a friend and also a writer donated a kidney to Satel on March 4, 2006. Satel adopts an unbiased tone in order to appeal to the emotional feelings of the People of United States by carefully outlining reasons to back her argument most of which were personal experiences. Her argument appeared in the journal of the American Enterprise Institute on October 14, 2006 which was written after the essay “transplant policy” in the journal.

The American Enterprise Institute is one of the oldest and most influential publications in United States. Satel’s journal was read by millions of Americans which pointed out the little or no risk that is involved in organ donation. “The risk a donor runs is that a single functioning kidney will become deceased or injured, and he’ll need a transplant himself—a highly unlikely event”(Satel 451). Satel begins her contemporary argument ‘organs for sale” by talking about her past experience when in need of a kidney, she talked about how frustrating it could be waiting for a kidney while decisions by potential donors are changed. The argument appeared in the journal of the American Enterprise Institution on October 14, 2006.

She appeals to the mournful emotions of the audience giving exact analysis about incidents of victims in the country. “Even with dialysis, the kidneys of many sick people deteriorate so quickly that time runs out. An average of 11 Americans die each day waiting for a renal transplant” (Satel 448). She said the desperation grew in her because she had no siblings and several friends said they would look into it. She said despite decades of public education about the virtues of donating organs at death, the level of such gifts has remained disappointingly steady. she joins in this time of mourning in order to unify the nation and humbly admit that there are still concerns about organ donor in America. She gave various statistics about the American health relating to organs to show her concern for the nation. Satel’s argument is factual and answered questions to recent researches on Dutch reality tv show for “organ donation” and in london the tv series “three rivers” e.t.c.

The main claim of the argument is individuals who wish to donate their organs to friends, families to just strangers should be allowed to either do so for free, money or valuable consideration. Individuals should be given free will to donate organs to receive money, valuable consideration or for altruism. “For that reason, more and more physicians ethicists, economists and legal scholars are urging the legalization of payments for organs in other to generate more kidneys for transplantation” (Satel 449). Satel believes that if the freedom to donate organs at any cost is legalized, there will be more donors available for the sake of transplantation for the needy. She comments that there are over 60.000 people waiting for a posthumous kidney. She further argued that altruism alone cannot solve organ shortage. Thus, her claim is urging the legalization of payments for organs to generate more kidneys for transplantation. Satel had good researches about the freedom of organ donation and her claim was backed up by great economists and scholars. Richard M. Titmuss is a professor in London school of Economics who strongly believed in Altruism.

“Altruism is the sole legitimate impulse behind organ donation” (…..), the onetime best U.S best seller further argued that altruistic acts are important qualities of human relationships in a society. Satel carefully cleared doubts of the notion that compensating donors will commodify the body and dehumanize us, she believes that its better to legalize organ donation than allow people suffer and die. To further commend her argument, Satel analyzed the short term amd long term risks an organ donor faces and to a reasonably fact, “The truth is that a normal person can get along perfectly well with one kidney. The risk a donor runs is that his single functioning kidney will become deceased or injured and he’ll need a transplant himself—a highly unlikely event” (Satel 451). Satel’s aim is to provoke the emotional response of the readers and persuade them to believe his arguments by carefully giving facts and reliable sources to back his arguments up. In the argument, several rhetorical questions are addressed to the readers. “is it wrong for an individual…. Who wishes to utilize part of his body for the benefit of another to be provided with financial compensation that could obliterate a life of destitution for the individual and his family”.( Richard 449).

This question appears to be a rhetorical question that demands the readers emotional response. Satel’s argument is a true life experience of herself. She uses herself as an example when necessary. “don’t get me wrong. Altruism is wrong- it’s the reason I have a new kidney” (Satel 449). Thus, this makes the argument trustworthy because she was a victim and clearly knows the importance of organ donation. In this argument,we can say that all statements written and analyzed by her are true and her sources were either known scholars, economists, physicians or they were researched from journals by reliable authors. She further says that there are over 67,600 people waiting for a posthumous kidney and last year, only 16,470 people received kidneys, roughly half of the donors were deceased. In conclusion, we are able to see that Satel had her detailed analysis about her publication.

Satel carefully appeals to the necessary authorities in charge of the organ donation decision outlining reasons why her publication should be supported. Satel started the argument with her personal life experiences on how she struggled and eventually got an organ from a friend and writer Virginia Postrel. She gave accurate statistics and figures about organ donation in America and quoted known scholars, economists and physicians supporting her claim that organ donations to victims either for money, valuable consideration or altruism should be legalized. Satel ended the argument stating the need for several alternative incentive market systems for organ donors such as a forward market for cadaver organs, the centralized single compensator, multiple compensators and private contracts. This is a formal style of writing as it’s a direct argument from the writer who was a victim.

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