The best argument against the organ market still awaits refutation.
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Critics of a regulated market in organs have correctly focussed on its inability to protect the vendor from coercion and exploitation. However, they have consistently failed to realise that coercion and exploitation are not immanent in this market. Rather, they are immanent in the need to even consider selling ones organs (free people do not engage in such considerations). In other words, the critics have failed to acknowledge that a regulated market in organs should, at least theoretically, be able to protect the vendor from coercion and exploitation that might occur within the sphere of exchange, but it cannot protect the vendor, not even theoretically, from coercion and exploitation that occur universally outside this sphere. Even worse, its ethical guise would only serve to conceal and reinforce them. In this light, criticism of any organ market could make sense only if it were part of the greater struggle against the oppressive social conditions that have made it a viable option to begin with. This anti- market argument still awaits refutation.
- College Publications