Monday, March 19, 2012
What would you give up?
I recently finished the first book in a trilogy by Scott Westerfeld. The first book is “Uglies” which is followed by “Pretties” and then “Specials”. There is a forth book called “Extras” that I haven’t looked into yet so I am not sure if it is truly part of the series.
The Uglies was written in 2005 and is a science fiction novel set in a future dystopian society. In the series the people of the dystopian society start out life as littles living with their parents (middle pretties) but move to the ugly city when they turn 12 and wait to become pretty when they are 16 by way of surgery. After the surgery they move to New Pretty Town where it is non-stop parties and fun. In this society no one has to worry about not being pretty enough, tall enough, skinny enough, too skinny, too tall, etc etc. (Is it ok to have two etc’s or is that redundant?) Another benefit of being pretty is that there is no illness or disease. So why wouldn’t everyone want to be pretty?
CAUTION – possible spoiler ahead if you think you might want to read the series!!!!! You may want to go read the first book and then check back. I am only 100 pages into the second book so I suspect I will be revisiting this topic as I continue to read the series. The series is written for young adults so the books are a quick read and I highly recommend reading them. Nearly as good as the Hunger Games series - thus if you enjoyed the Hunger Games you will enjoy this series.
What if being pretty (and healthy) meant you had to give up something that makes you – You. What if being pretty meant that you lost free will but didn’t even know you lost free will because your mind is altered to make you think you live in utopia all the time?
So here is where I link this to Diabetes if you hadn’t guessed that yet.
What if you could “cure” diabetes and become “pretty” at the same time – what if your kids could? What would you be willing to give up? Would you give up your ability to think clearly and your freewill to be done with diabetes – to end diabetes, cancer, MS, Autism, etc etc? Would it make a difference if you didn’t know you were giving it up? If when you were 16 you simply had an operation that made you “perfect” and allowed you to live in utopia?
Here is where I have a problem. I don’t have diabetes or any other health issues. Of course I would like to be skinnier, have less gray hair, healthier skin, and better coordination but not at the cost of losing my ability to think for myself. (But if I didn’t know that was the cost my answer might be different.) I think I would give anything for my kids not to have diabetes and my mom not to have MS but if I knew what their cost would be, would I encourage them to become “pretty” anyway?
If you are a pwd would you become “pretty” if you knew the cost? What if you didn’t know the cost – would knowing you would be just like everyone else and living in a utopia be enough for you?
I hope to finish the second book “Pretties” soon and I am guessing I will update my thoughts when I finish the second book and the series.