Friday 10 August 2012


Nine people are on trial in Southern China for helping a teenager sell one of his kidneys so that he could buy an iPad and an iPhone. I’m sure that is NOT what Steve Jobs had in mind when it came to product loyalty. The teen in question is now suffering renal failure after selling his kidney and his attorney (and irate mother who I’m hoping rapped her son upside the head for being so stupid) is requesting compensation to the tune of 2.2 million Yuan (roughly 300 grand).

One of the defendants, and the apparent ringleader, was a gambling addict who apparently recruited others to help him look for donors in Internet chat rooms. Ah yes, yet another reason to put hefty parental controls on all your computers. Apparently the proceeds from the sale of this teen’s kidney were all split evenly between the nine in question, and with the teenager's ‘earnings,’ for lack of a better word, he went out and bought a bunch of Apple products. Forgive me for sounding callous, but it’s China. Couldn’t he have gotten a ton of rip off products for half the price and saved himself from getting cut into? A fair question I think.

Of course it's hard not to read a story like this and ask oneself if our society has gone way too far in terms of our dependence and addiction to our electronic devices (you think?!). I mean seriously people, selling your organs for anything is certifiable; let alone selling one for a product that has a two year shelf life because another model that doesn’t have all the kinks that yours does is coming out in a matter of days! (And I’m a loyal Apple user, but HELLO, fix the antennae on the damn iPhone already). 

The scary part of the human race is – oh is that a loaded statement – that we are getting more and more attached to our stuff. Many of us are driven by stuff. Our society markets ‘stuff’ like heroin and at every turn convinces us that our lives will be better if we have more stuff in it, better stuff, newer stuff, stuff with super flashy packaging guaranteed to make you happier. And the frightening part of it is, if kids aren’t pining after X boxes or the latest pair of sneakers, they’re selling their kidneys for the latest technological gadgetry.

And my dear husband wonders why I fight tooth and nail to keep the King from getting his eager little hands on any sort of electronic or video gaming device.(It’ll be hot wheel cars until you’re ten years old my friend!) It’s bad enough he touches the television and tries to move the screen with his little finger thinking it's like mommy's phone. Now, I’d like to think that I’m raising a child that won’t be compelled to sell his organs further down the line, but I’m sure the mother of this teenager didn’t think her child would go to such great lengths to keep up with the latest technology.

In fact, I think someone should nationalize a holiday where everyone must put down their devices: phones, laptops, Gameboys (or whatever is hip these days, I don’t have a clue) and just UNPLUG. In fact, maybe on this day it should be law to get outside, get some fresh air, and go read a book….one with actual paper pages!

Ah, a girl (with all her organs, typing on a laptop) can dream.

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