Leaving Treadmarkz Across the Universe

Posts Tagged ‘playing God

Make It or Break It Moment #3 – Who Decides the Fate of the Disabled When All Hell Finally Does Break Loose?

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by Treadmarkz

It always strikes me as funny when a fully able-bodied person reads or hears something about the everyday trials of a disabled person and they respond with something like this:

“Wow, I complain a lot when I am tired or have a stomach ache but after hearing that, I will never complain again.”

Why is this funny? Because let’s face it. You know that within a day of saying this, that person will have a backache or a stomach ache and they will probably vocalize some form of complaint. That’s what we do. All of us. Disabled or not. Very rare is the person who never complains about anything. It is not as though by swearing off complaining, you make the life of the disabled person you just read or heard about any better. Though, it also is not as though by complaining, you make your own life any better. It just makes you feel better to vent.

Having said that:

Here is a story that, upon reading it, should make anyone who is not severely disabled or elderly, or otherwise in life-threateningly poor health, and even anyone with just a minor disability, happy with what they have. It is a story about a list that apparently does exist somewhere, defining what criteria a person would have to meet in order to be considered priority in getting care in the event of a major epidemic or other world-shaking emergency.

What gives the people who will be making these decisions the right to play God like this?, you may rightfully ask. Is one life more valuable than others? Or is it just a decision made based on logic and what’s best for the future of the human race, a situation wherein every individual human life is assigned its own value?

But let me say this. The criteria of the “saved” in this story does not cover strength of character. What I mean by this is, what if there is a major world-wide nuclear disaster and the world population is depleted because the focus is place on saving the strong bodied, healthy-hearted, young, virile, fertile people. What if, on day two after the bomb, we find that a higher than expected percentage of the saved are mentally, emotionally incapable of handling the extreme stress, whether from lack of experience (youth) or just plain lack of adversity in their lives (good health, a result of opportunity and genetics).

Let me be perfectly clear: I am not going to try to compare the every day trials of the disabled, or even our worst moments in life, to a nuclear disaster. This is just one of my what-if questions. I am just concerned about what, as a society, we have chosen to peg as desirable traits.