Gordon Brown announced on Sunday that he supports a change in the organ donor system that would see ‘presumed consent’. In other words, unless you opt-out or your family explicitly objects, it will be assumed that you have no problem with the removal of your internal organs.
I personally don’t mind what happens to my organs as long as I’m confirmed dead. However, ‘presumed consent’ is a step too far. This is not how things are supposed to work.
Death does not permit the government to seize property. If I suddenly keel over, and I or my next of kin fail to opt-out or object, it is not simply assumed that I want my money to go to people without money, or want my house to go to the homeless.
It is assumed that property passes on to the next of kin. And if organ donation is not explicitly ruled in, then technically, bodily property is entrusted with the same people, who then decide what should happen to it.
Organ donation is a right that belongs to the individual not the state. ‘Presumed consent’ is an afront to this principle, and reflects a broader trend of state interventionism.