Bikerbernie's Weblog weblog Acting Locally Affecting the World Globally a Little at a Time!

New York’s Opt Out Organ Donor Program

Correct me if I am wrong but it was not too long ago that legislation was passed against businesseson this very same practice? I am talking about unsolicited programs like on credit cards where they would send you an offer that would carry a monthly fee. If you did not send the mail back declaring no you do not want to participate you would be enrolled and charged. Now New York wants to apply opt out legislation to organ donation. This is at least sneaky. I should not have to tell anyone that I do not want to do something, if I do not do it that means that I do not want to do it. It cannot be any more simple. It is not the government and social programs that repeat ad nauseam that no means no, and now that you are unconscious it means that you would change your mind? I would like to see this defense used in a rape case, “Your Honor, my date feel asleep, I believed that to be presumed consent for sex.” FAT CHANCE!. What is it that they say about ass u me? Presumed consent is a colossal mistake and open to types of abuse that sends chills to my bones. I do not mean to be insensitive however laws, to be effective must be applied unilaterally. Truly it is the NYS government that is being insensitive to peoples wishes, people did not sign up because they did not wish to participate in the program. What is good for business is good for the government, if not then you will have people that will justifiably not follow the law if the government or a select few are exempt from it. The law can not take a do as I say not as I do stance or anarchy will eventually win out.

This well intentioned but very misguided legislation consideration must be stopped.


7 Responses to “New York’s Opt Out Organ Donor Program”

  1. If we’re going to presume people are organ donors unless they opt out, we should also give people a reason to NOT opt out. Donated organs should be allocated first to those who haven’t opted out. People who opt out of organ donation should go to the back of the transplant waiting list. The United Network for Organ Sharing, which manages the national organ allocation system, has the power to make this simple policy change. No legislative action is required.

    Americans who want to donate their organs to other registered organ donors don’t have to wait for UNOS to act. They can join LifeSharers, a non-profit network of organ donors who agree to offer their organs first to other organ donors when they die. Membership is free at or by calling 1-888-ORGAN88. There is no age limit, parents can enroll their minor children, and no one is excluded due to any pre-existing medical condition.

    Giving organs first to organ donors will save more lives by convincing more people to register as organ donors. It will also make the organ allocation system fairer. People who aren’t willing to share the gift of life should go to the back of the waiting list as long as there is a shortage of organs.

    David J. Undis
    Executive Director

  2. David,

    Thanks for the information. Do not get me wrong, this is an important program BUT we all have to be vigilant about what and how the government takes liberties with our lives, freedoms, and bodies. The world is changing so quickly it is difficult for people to keep up.

    It is unfair to say “People who aren’t willing to share the gift of life should go to the back of the waiting list as long as there is a shortage of organs.” The gift of life is given by people in so many ways. I for one have committed a considerable amount of my life, much more than half, to giving the gift of life to others by being an EMT, Fireman, and donating blood but am not an organ donor yet. Many have put their life on the line for others even when other peoples lives were not in jeopardy, such as for their property. So, it would be unfair to eliminate others from the recipient list just because they are not a declared organ donor. Would you, could you, deny a volunteer fireman injured in the line of duty while saving another the liver that was damaged? What about the veteran? This list is long. Denial to these people would be harsh, cruel, unfair, immoral, unethical. You see many people give in many ways, things are just not that black and white any more. Today one has to have the ability to be Gestalt ESPECIALLY if you are an executive director of such an important organization.


  3. The main goal of the organ donation/transplant system should be to save as many lives as possible. Which system saves more lives, the one that creates an incentive to donate by giving organs first to organ donors or the one that doesn’t? The answer seems clear.

    “Fairness” is in the eye of the beholder, but it’s awfully hard to argue that a system that saves more lives is unfair.

    I would not deny an organ to a fireman, a veteran, or anyone else. The people who are denying organs to firemen, veterans, and everyone else are the people who aren’t willing to donate their organs even when they can’t use them any more. Those people should go to the back of the transplant waiting list. It’s the Golden Rule, and applying it to organ donation saves more lives.

    If you’d like to donate your organs to other organ donors, please join LifeSharers at

  4. I guess the main issue that I have with “going to the back of the list if you are not a declared organ donor” is that there are many declared organ donors that are not organ donors. They will receive the privilege of being moved to the front of the line without ever having to “donate.” Examples are far and wide, AIDS and cancer patents can say they will be an organ donor BUT without the commitment because their organs will never be harvested. It is a hollow promise that moves them to the front of the list if they need a transplant.

    Sorry, I do not mean to put you on the spot, I am trying to learn (understand) which I cannot do without asking questions. Truly how are orgon donors with medical conditions that make them ineligible to be an organ donor any different than those that do not say outwardly they will be one? How do they help give the gift of life? Why is it that they will be moved to the front of the list when they provide nothing more than the person who does not volunteer his organs?

    Thanks for your contuned information.


  5. Surgeons are now transplanting organs from people who had HIV, cancer, and hepatitis C.

    No one can tell you today if your organs will be transplantable when you die, because the science keeps changing. Surgeons are now transplanting lots of organs they would have thrown away just a few years ago. A few years from now, they’ll probably be transplanting lots of organs that would be thrown away today.

    That’s why no promise to donate can be called an empty promise. Everyone can, and should, offer to donate. The surgeons can figure it out when the time comes.

    LifeSharers does not exclude anyone due to any pre-existing medical condition. Membership is free at

  6. Dave,

    Sorry your last comment got caught in the spam filter, I do not know why. Interesting information again. Would you give my readers links to these types of transplants so they can check them out.

    I am however,surprised by this revelation because of the recent event where a man died of uterine cancer after getting a kidney transplant. I take it that there must be a method of “washing” the organ clean of disease if they are aware that the donor had one.


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