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Bad Art Friend Kerfluffle

A group of writers decided to behave like terrible human beings to another writer, who also happened to participate in kidney chain as a non-directed living kidney donor, which resulted in a very popular article in The New York Times Book Review.

No, I’m not going to link to it; Google is your friend.

I did whip off a Twitter thread the night this article went viral, because (naturally) no one seemed to understand that Dorland had to pass a psychological evaluation to donate, and despite her obvious vulnerabilities, was permitted to do so.

The conversation about this situation continues unabated as, seemingly, every writer *everywhere* is penning and publishing their perspective on it.

I have not. Nor will I.

Firstly, because I tried that when I was in the thick of LD101 and this blog, and not a single editor anywhere wanted to hear anything except rainbows and puppy dogs in reference in living donation. It didn’t matter that I had myriad academic articles and other assorted evidence. Hell, a particular reporter at the NY Times, who had composed multiple pro-donation articles, even accused my cohort of “conspiracy theories” (Pretty hilarious given this country’s recent history and current situation on that particular topic).

Anyway, I’ve had to listen to the same bullshit discourse regarding transplants recently as I did in 2008 and the ~7 years following:

  • Living donation is safe (A quick search of this site will reveal that to be untrue)
  • The mythological “spare” kidney (Do you have a spare arm/leg? I don’t think so)
  • “Life-saving” kidney transplant (Transplants are treatments, not cures. Most recipients will need multiple transplants to achieve an average life span. Many folks with end-stage renal disease are not good candidates for transplants. And there are other treatments; namely, dialysis)
  • And of course: I really hope this (depiction of the aforementioned living kidney donor’s behavior) doesn’t discourse people from donating (insert eye roll emoji here)

All of this has provoked two – wait, three – consequences for me:

  1. It’s made me talk about shit I stopped talking about years ago, because I’m tired of being branded a liar, conspiracy theorist (see above) or any number of random insults.
  2. It’s really, really pissed me off, which is not great.
  3. It’s triggered the hell out of the PTSD I obtained as a result of being a living kidney donor, which is really fucking bad.

So, if you end up here, don’t come at me with “the site hasn’t been updated in X number of years”. No shit Sherlock. Unlocking the history of the transplant industry’s shenanigans while poring over every published academic article I could find *and* conversing with potential and current living donors who were wounded and trying to find their way through the labyrinth; plus commenting on the media’s perpetuation of misinformation and one-sidedness (thanks google alerts) was a FULL TIME FUCKING JOB FOR WHICH I DID NOT GET PAID.

Use the search function. Look up the source material (which is *always* noted/linked). Everything is in these pages and posts. If you’re too lazy to read, then do us both a favor: STFU and go away.