Am I Worthless?

In chapter 8 of Hull’s Infinite Nature, the section called “Pricing a Life” disturbed me. Are we really being degraded to mere means of economic profit? Hull explains that in our world today, there are methods to deciphering the value of a person’s life, which includes being able to “equate the value of a life to the earnings of a lifetime – you are what you earn” (114). If I were to die now, with my part-time, minimum wage job, I would be considered “worthless” (or average) in today’s society. Is this fair? I can see that companies and businesses would use this model; it’s their job to gain profit to stay in business. However, demeaning a person to these methods is immoral to me. We are worth more than the dollar bill.



3 responses to “Am I Worthless?

  1. I haven’t read this chapter yet, but I definitely agree that it seems extremely demeaning. Just as “money doesn’t buy happiness,” money also doesn’t decide who a person is and what they are worth. I don’t chose who I have in my life based off of how much money they make, so people should not only be valued for how much they earn.

  2. Well how do you feel about wrongful death lawsuits? The law determines the restitution a person should receive for a wrongful death. Is the amount justified then? It would appear that it is considered so but maybe not to the family.

  3. Interesting thought. However, I am not sure that even in this case, that money should be the sole focus of how a person is “defined”. I guess in my opening comment on the subject, I should have used the example of a person. Take for instance Mother Teresa. I believe that in her order she had to give up basically everything that she had, including money. She doesn’t make an income, and when she dies, is the government going to define her value based on her income (which is basically nothing), or is her personal worth much more than a monetary number?

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