In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review August 28, 2007 / 14 Elul, 5767

No trade-offs?

By Thomas Sowell

Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | A whole nation following the tragedy of a mine cave-in in Utah was struck by the further tragedy of another cave-in at the same mine, killing men who had gone underground to try to rescue the miners trapped there.

The second tragedy was avoidable — but only if we were willing to talk about human life in terms of trade-offs. But our society has become too squeamish to do that.

As day after day went by, with no sign whatever that the trapped miners were still alive and with dwindling chances each day of their remaining alive, even if they had somehow survived the cave-in, at some point it makes no sense to risk more lives to try to save them.

"But what if it was your brother or your father down there?" some would say. "Would you want to stop looking if there was any chance at all that he might still be alive?"

The short answer is: What if it was your brother or your father who had to risk his life in a rescue attempt underground?

Trade-offs are inescapable in every aspect of life but anyone who talks about trade-offs when life is at stake is likely to be denounced as someone lacking in compassion, if not cruel.

Squeamishness is too often confused with humanity, but the consequence of squeamishness can be needless suffering and needless deaths.

Many a cold-blooded murderer has had his life spared because people squeamish about executions imagine that it is more moral or humane to lock him up for life — or until he escapes or is pardoned someday when an even more squeamish governor is elected.


at a discount
by clicking HERE.

Additional people murdered by convicted murderers are part of the grim price paid for that squeamishness.

They can be murdered while in prison or on the outside, perhaps during one of those "furloughs" for prisoners so fashionable among those who flatter themselves as being more advanced thinkers than the rest of us.

The price of their vanity can be deaths more terrible than the executions they regard as too cruel to carry out.

Some of the victims of our squeamishness die unnoticed because their deaths are not considered to be as newsworthy as the deaths of victims of mine cave-ins or of murder.

Thousands of people die every year waiting for organ transplants that never come, and some of these deaths come at the end of months or years of debilitation and suffering.

In some countries, it is legal to purchase organs to be transplanted. Some people spend upwards of $100,000 to go to those countries for a transplant operation when they cannot get a kidney or a liver or other organ here.

Why is the selling of an organ illegal here? Because so many people are so squeamish about such a transaction.

Many of these squeamish people are in good health and will probably never need an organ transplant. But others who are not so fortunate must suffer and die because these physically healthy people would feel squeamish about organs being bought and sold.

No doubt people who are poor are more likely to sell a kidney than people who are rich, so opposition to such sales can be wrapped in the rhetoric of "social justice."

But what is just about denying some people an opportunity to get out of poverty and denying other people an opportunity to get out of debilitation and suffering that can only end in death?

Not all organ sales would have to be from living people, just as most organ transplants today are not from living people.

People could sell the right to have their organs removed after death or sell the rights to the organs of dead family members, if they chose.

Nothing is easier than to conjure up horrible scenarios that could result from sales of organs. But the very reason we have laws in the first place is because horrible things could happen otherwise in every aspect of life.

More organs to transplant are needed, and people tend to supply more of anything when they are paid more — and especially when they are paid something instead of being paid nothing.

But, here as elsewhere, we must first overcome squeamishness. And the first step is to stop confusing it with being humane.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Comment on JWR contributor Thomas Sowell's column by clicking here.


Thomas Sowell Archives

© 2006, Creators Syndicate