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Old 05-11-2013, 12:23 PM
 
Location: Northeastern US
14,190 posts, read 9,077,440 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by manderly6 View Post
I think very few people would take advantage of your new system. And it still wouldn't be free. Taxes have to pay for that.
How many funeral procession do you get stuck behind? Do you live next to a cemetery?

Personally I love choice. And people not telling me what I should and shouldn't be spending my money on.
I'd take advantage of it.

As to funeral processions, they probably made more sense in a bygone era when communities were tighter and more homogenous. People would pay respects as a community to a community member. These days what passes for community has more to do with work and maybe church or charitable affiliations than it does with neighborhood, so yes, if you encounter a funeral procession, likely you have no clue who it is in honor of and probably don't care either. And people in such processions shouldn't kid themselves that anyone outside the procession actually gives a fig.

Still, it's one of the traditions that has accreted around the whole death process and I suppose like all traditions it makes an unpleasant experience more predictable so that everyone knows what to expect.
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Old 05-11-2013, 01:07 PM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
40,825 posts, read 18,553,245 times
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manderly
Quote:
I think very few people would take advantage of your new system. And it still wouldn't be free. Taxes have to pay for that.
And I think that you would be surprised.

Of course taxes would pay for it, taxes pay for all governmental services. My argument is that this should be a governmental service. That it will not serve everyone because people such as yourself elected not to take advantage of it, is no different from my currently paying taxes for a wide array of governmental services from which I extract no benefit. People without children still have to pay for the education of other people's children, people who never visit National or State Parks still have to pay for their upkeep and staffing.


Quote:
How many funeral procession do you get stuck behind? Do you live next to a cemetery?
I have an immense amount of experience with funeral processions, it is what inspired my current stance. I was an alter boy in grade school and I wound serving at about five dozen funerals over the years. The alter boys rode in the limo that led the parade, so I always had a wonderful view of the traffic snarling that we were causing. There was one suburb connected to the rest of the city by a three mile bridge where the normal speed limit was 60 mph. If the burial was to take place in the cemetery in that suburb, then all traffic that got stuck behind us had to crawl across the three miles at 30 mph. I'm sure the corpses appreciated everyone's patience.

Quote:
Personally I love choice. And people not telling me what I should and shouldn't be spending my money on.
I made it optional. If you wish to invest your money in a big send off for someone who will have no idea whether he or she is getting a big send off or not, that is left to your discretion. All I am denying to you at the moment is the ability to screw things up for a huge number of people with your funeral parade.
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Old 05-11-2013, 02:10 PM
 
25,740 posts, read 25,367,995 times
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It's cremation for me. I don't want to take up space. Whether there's an afterlife or not, AFAIK, I won't need my body for it, so the practical thing to do, IMO, is to be cremated.

I also want to keep things simple. I don't want tons of money spent on my behalf after I'm dead. Again, if there is an afterlife I will presumably know who's really missing me and who isn't. More or fewer flowers won't change that and neither will an expensive urn.
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Old 05-11-2013, 02:58 PM
 
Location: NJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grandstander View Post
manderly

And I think that you would be surprised.
So in your estimation what % of US citizens would opt for the dead body government pick up option?
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Old 05-11-2013, 03:19 PM
 
12,540 posts, read 12,518,479 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wild Colonial Girl View Post
Oleg, maybe a Tibetan sky burial for you, then?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oleg Bach View Post
Sounds good to me...I would love to be interned in the sky...or water for that matter. The rituals involved in modern burial or burning really bother me. Plus they are expensive..You would think that death would be free? I have attended a lot of funerals. Have seen a lot of expensive caskets...limos and police escorts...fancy concrete boxes painted gold that the coffin is lowered into. I dread the death of a family member...I can handle death and never weep....I tell my kids to be careful..and not suffer premature death due to accident....I JUST CAN'T AFFORD TO BURY ANYONE....the cost is one of the greatest head ache.

I don't want anyone hovering over me when I am dying..I don't want anyone holding my damned hand...I don't want the faithless weeping either. Just let me like a well composed piece of music de-compose into the sweet silence. Funny - the older you get the less you fear....The insult of someone messing with my corpse is disturbing.

My father had a very slow painful death..it was his death and it was his affair. He was a skeletal mess near the end and his teeth were ground down to the gums from pain. Just before he died he had one request..He said to my mother "Masha don't let them cut me up" In other words no autopsy. I also remember the day my mother finally died from kidney failure. I was sitting with her corpse and a doctor entered the room...He asked me "Can we do an autopsy?" - I looked at the curious jerks and said..."You know exactly what killed her...don't touch her.

Also I noticed one thing about a fresh corpse. They look beautiful...once they are embalmed and touched up with damned paint and mortician's putty - they look like monsters..........NO THANKS - keep your God damned hands off of me...So how much is a ticket to Tibet?
Oleg, I don't think you quite understand what a Tibetan sky burial is. There's no interment. Your body is slashed open by humans and vultures come and eat it. After they pick the bones clean, your skull is cracked open and your brains are mixed with barley wheat, and the vultures eat that, too. Nothing is left when they are finished--which I think is pretty cool and would love to have happen to my remains. But since I live in the U.S., I'm going to have to go with cremation and having my ashes mixed with those of my pets. If my loved ones want to divvy me up after that, they can. Makes no difference to me. I just don't want to take up any space or waste any wood with a coffin.
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Old 05-11-2013, 04:54 PM
 
Location: NJ
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So this thread got me thinking about something. What happens if no one claims a dead body? I mean family members don't have to, right? I assume at some point the gov't would step in.

I remember once watching a documentary about homeless people in NY. When they die and can't find anyone to claim the bodies the city buries them in a "paupers cemetery" with no markings.
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Old 05-11-2013, 05:23 PM
 
794 posts, read 1,195,217 times
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Oleg, you don't know what sky burial is, do you? It's natural and hands off only after
Spoiler
they've chopped your arms and legs off and until they grind up your bones to mix with butter and feed to the vultures
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Old 05-11-2013, 05:24 PM
 
794 posts, read 1,195,217 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by manderly6 View Post
So this thread got me thinking about something. What happens if no one claims a dead body? I mean family members don't have to, right? I assume at some point the gov't would step in.

I remember once watching a documentary about homeless people in NY. When they die and can't find anyone to claim the bodies the city buries them in a "paupers cemetery" with no markings.
I'm sure I read somewhere they have a job lot cremation rate for unclaimed bodies. It's a public health issue.

ETA: well, at least in NC the medical schools get first dibs

Quote:
(b) All dead bodies not claimed for final disposition within 10 days of the decedent's death may be received and delivered by the Commission of Anatomy pursuant to the authority contained in G.S. 130A‑33.30 and this Part and in accordance with the rules of the Commission of Anatomy. Upon receipt of a body by the Commission of Anatomy all interests in and rights to the unclaimed dead body shall vest in the Commission of Anatomy. The recipient to which the Commission of Anatomy delivers the body shall pay all expenses for the embalming and delivery of the body, and for the reasonable expenses arising from efforts to notify relatives or others.

(b1) The 10‑day period referenced in subsections (a) and (b) of this section may be shortened by the county director of social services upon determination that a dead body will not be claimed for final disposition within the 10‑day period.

(c) Should the Commission of Anatomy decline to receive a dead body, the person with possession shall inform the director of social services of the county in which the body is located. The director of social services of that county shall arrange for prompt final disposition of the body, either by cremation or burial. Reasonable costs of disposition and of efforts made to notify relatives and others shall be considered funeral expenses and shall be paid in accordance with G.S. 28A‑19‑6 and G.S. 28A‑19‑8. If those expenses cannot be satisfied from the decedent's estate, they shall be borne by the decedent's county of residence. If the deceased is not a resident of this State, or if the county of residence is unknown, those expenses shall be borne by the county in which the death occurred.
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Old 05-11-2013, 05:43 PM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
40,825 posts, read 18,553,245 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by manderly6 View Post
So in your estimation what % of US citizens would opt for the dead body government pick up option?
I think eventually the great majority and ultimately everyone. Keep in mind that whatever world one is born into, that is your moral norm. Today we might be appalled by the idea of children being forced to work ten or twelve hours a day in wretched conditions, but 100 years ago it was generally tolerated. 150 years ago you would have had no trouble finding people defending slavery.

We were born into a world and conditioned to believe that the way death and body disposal is currently handled, is the proper way to go about it. If my system were in place it might be a case where 15% take advantage of it the first five years, 20 % the next five years..and in thirty years you will have a world where people are being born in a society where a fairly large percentage is completely comfortable with the government taking care of body disposals. They will not have the conditioning which we have which makes a change in the dynamic seem vaguely wrong, so they will be embracing the concept as one more norm.

Eventually of course it would all be done that way and the people doing it that way will be saying "I can't believe that 100 years ago people actually......" and they will go on to describe some aspect of our funeral practices as though it was on par with voodoo curses.
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Old 05-11-2013, 05:51 PM
 
Location: NJ
17,579 posts, read 39,747,775 times
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We will just have to disagree. I don't think enough people would ever start using it for it to ever really grab a foothold. I guess as a question that has direct bearing on this is how long do you anticipate it would take for religion to basically not exist in the US. Because I can't fathom your idea taking hold while it does.
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