My husband once had a business trip to a notoriously crime-ridden city. The client he was visiting advised him, “Keep $20 in your pocket when you’re on the train. If someone holds you up, you give them the $20 and they won’t shoot you, they’ll move on.”
There was a price on your life in that town, and that price was $20.
Apparently in the Netherlands these days, the going rate is 5,000 Euros. That’s what normal people “cost” society, according the documentary The Last Downer. Someone’s done the math and estimated the average person with Down Syndrome “costs” 48,000 Euros.
This is why Iceland has to kill all the kids with Down Syndrome: That is a lot of book money, dontcha know? And are you kidding, how many books do people with Down Syndrome even read! Clearly they’ll just be staying up late on Christmas night pestering people who want to curl up with books. We can’t have that it. It wrecks the holidays.
Friends, this is why un-assisted suicide is on the rise. Utilitarianism is the belief that your worth as a human being is dependent on how much you “contribute.” It’s all a big cost-benefit calculation, and your value-add as a human is what determines whether your life is worth living.
You can’t be anti-suicide for the “desirables” if you’re pro-death for the people who don’t meet spec. Either you value human life for its own sake, or you buy into the lie that people are potentially useful meat-based productivity machines, to be bred and culled according to their uses.
So knock it off. Your worth as a human being has nothing to do with what you “cost” society or what you contribute. Your life is valuable because you are a priceless image of God, destined for eternal life.
Cover art courtesy of Ignatius Press, where I see that Life is Worth Living is on sale at the moment. Maybe you need this book, no?