Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews

Stop separating all conjoined twins

It happened again. Doctors have tried to separate two newborn girls resulting in one of them dying.

We develop from a fertilized egg into a multi-cell organism by cell division. Sometimes it happens that the first division results in two identical fertilized eggs that develop into identical twins. And sometimes this still happens while the separation was not complete, resulting in conjoined identical twins.

They can have any part of the body fused and there is no conjoined couple that is similar to any other.

Two brains means two people, with their own temperament and wishes. Only one heart, two arms, and even intense neural connection between the two brains, none of that means that it’s really one person.

Sometimes such twins are not viable. Sometimes one body is so disadvantaged that it can’t survive. And sometimes the anatomy is such that one body threatens the survival of the other body. But normally, the twins can survive and grow up healthily.

However, also in this majority of cases, parents and physicians often want to have the twins surgically separated. Even if such an operation would possibly or even certainly threaten the health and survival of one or both twins. Why take such a risk? The answer is both simple and shocking: normalism: the irrational urge to make people look normal. We see this also in LGBTQ Oppression and in the way society deals with people who are (supposedly) crazy.

Medical attacks on our bodily integrity we also see when a child is born “intersex” (with characteristics of both sexes), with “too many” digits and other “abnormalities” which do not warrant medical interference. Transgender surgery often aims so eagerly to “adjust” sex appearance “to take away sex dysphoria” (unhappiness), as if a man with breasts or a woman with a penis must be unhappy, happiness lies in normalcy.

There is a stereotype that people who are physically different must be unhappy, sad, and that making them seem normal will free them from a dreadful future. There is no proof for connecting happy with normal.

Look at how happy these twins grew up: here, here, here.

Yes, maybe dating will become a problem. But do we kill people to prevent dating difficulties?

Even more so, what trauma does one get when one’s twin is killed supposedly to give you happiness? Nine months of the deepest friendship in the womb is cut away in the name of happiness?

And what is the moral quality of a society that kills abnormality?

When I was in medical school, anatomist did not recognize these creatures as people. They called them monstra, Latin for monsters. With the word we were presented pots with dead bodies like these.

There should be international law that forbid separation of conjoined twins unless one of the bodies is really not viable, there is no operation to make it viable and/or one body threatens the survival of the other.

About the Author
To subscribe to his daily blog posts, click on the circle next to the blogger's picture, containing a dot with two quarter circles around it (the Feed Computer icon). * The author is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (DES - Diethylstilbestrol), born in 1953 to two Dutch survivors who met in the largest concentration camp in the Netherlands, Westerbork, and holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam). He taught Re-evaluation Co-counseling, became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's a vegan for 8 years now. He's an Orthodox Jew but not a rabbi. * His most influential teachers (chronologically) are: his parents, Nico (natan) van Zuiden and Betty (beisye) Nieweg, Wim Kan, Mozart, Harvey Jackins, Marshal Rosenberg, Reb Shlomo Carlebach and lehavdiel bein chayim lechayim: Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo, Rav Zev Leff and Rav Meir Lubin. * Previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. For a couple of years he wrote hasbara for the Dutch public. His fields of attention now are varied: Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science, Politics (Israel, the US and the Netherlands, Activism - more than leftwing or rightwing, he hopes to highlight Truth), Oppression and Liberation (intersectionally, for young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, GLBTQAI, foreigners and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust and Jewish Liberation), Ecology and Veganism. Sometimes he's misunderstood because he has such a wide vision that never fits any specialist's box. But that's exactly what many love about him. Many of his posts relate to affairs from the news or the Torah Portion of the Week or are new insights that suddenly befell him. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, reassure the doubters but make the self-assured doubt more. He strives to bring a fresh perspective rather than bore you with the obvious. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds must be disputed. In short, his main political positions are: anti-Trumpism, for Zionism, Intersectionality, non-violence, democracy, anti the fake peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, Science, Free Will, anti blaming-the-victim and for down-to-earth optimism. Read his blog how he attempts to bridge any discrepancies. He admits sometimes exaggerating to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quit a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * His writing has been made possible by an allowance for second generation Holocaust survivors from the Netherlands. It has been his dream since he was 38 to try to make a difference by teaching through writing. He had three times 9-out-of-10 for Dutch at his high school finals but is spending his days communicating in English and Hebrew - how ironic. G-d must have a fine sense of humor. In case you wonder - yes, he is a bit dyslectic. November 13, 2018, he published his 500st blog post with the ToI. * He likes doing age-appropriate and age-inappropriate things and looks forward to getting to know his timeless mature out-of-the-box soul mate. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me.
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