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Should we be allowed to bury our own dead (on our property, etc.)

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posted on Aug, 6 2009 @ 02:29 PM
I put forth this question for a few reasons.

I came across this article:

Have economic times gotten so bad that some of the dead are going unburied? Several large counties across the country are experiencing unprecedented increases in the number of unclaimed deceased — not only because the dead people could not be identified, were indigent or were estranged from their family, but also apparently because more people simply cannot afford to bury or cremate their loved ones. The phenomenon has increased costs for local governments, which have to dispose of the bodies.


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"People were picking the bodies up last year," says Albert Samuels, chief investigator at the medical examiner's office in Wayne County, Mich., which includes Detroit. "Across the board, I'm finding the numbers are on the rise of either families who are not coming forward to claim bodies or they're signing releases saying they can't afford to bury someone, which taxes the county resources because then the county is responsible for burying these people."
(See the top 10 celebrity funerals.)

The Los Angeles County coroner's office has seen a surge in the number of bodies that are not claimed by families for cremation or burial because of economic hardship, according to the Los Angeles Times. At the county coroner's office — which handles homicides and other suspicious deaths — 36% more cremations were done at taxpayers' expense in the past fiscal year compared with the previous year, from 525 to 712, the paper reported.

The traditional tourist mecca of Las Vegas is facing similar challenges. The coroner's office in Clark County, Nev., which includes Las Vegas, saw a 22% increase in burials and cremations of unclaimed bodies this year, jumping from 741 to 904. When burial costs exceeded $1 million in the 2003-'04 fiscal year, the agency turned to cremating the unclaimed unless it could be determined that burial was required because of religious or other beliefs. Each cremation costs $425 to $475.
(Read a grim story of unearthed graves outside Chicago.)

Currently in Detroit, says Samuels, "I have approximately 65 to 70 bodies that are ready to be buried. Of those 65 or 70, I can tell you, are 35 or 40 where families have signed off on the bodies and they don't have the funds to bury them." It costs the state — or the county, if the state declines to help — $750 to bury an unclaimed decedent in a potter's grave in Western Wayne County.

That is still only a small fraction of what a traditional burial costs a family. (According to the most recent statistics from the National Funeral Directors Association, a regular adult funeral with burial, not including cemetery, monument or marker costs, averages $7,323.) Even so, the costs can quickly add up for a place like Wayne County. "Per capita, we're probably the fifth busiest medical examiner's office in the country," says Samuels. "We handle 13,000 death calls a year and almost 3,600 bodies come through this system a year. So you're talking about 10 bodies a day average."

Despite the considerable costs to his agency, Samuels is sympathetic to the plight people find themselves in. "They don't do this gleefully. These people are really heartbroken about the fact that they can't [bury their loved ones]. This is not just a distant relative — you have kids who can't bury their parents a lot of times, or siblings who can't bury each other."

[edit on 6-8-2009 by jackieps1975]

posted on Aug, 6 2009 @ 02:32 PM
Now, I've had some serious personal conflicts about my own death arrangements and those of my loved ones.

Personally (and I know it sounds strange), I would want a "vikings funeral'. Put me in a canoe, set it on fire and send me out to sea! Naturally that poses some issues......but you get the idea.

Shouldn't we have the right to our own bodies, even after they expire?


posted on Aug, 6 2009 @ 02:58 PM
i agree with the viking burial. and yes i feel we should have thre right to choose, as long as it doesn't bring about safety/health risks to the community. ( cremation i don't think brings any risk, viking or not )

posted on Aug, 6 2009 @ 03:01 PM
Absolutely you should be able to bury yourself on your own land.

Trouble is as long as property tax exists it's never really your land. You're just renting it.

posted on Aug, 6 2009 @ 03:04 PM

Shouldn't we have the right to our own bodies, even after they expire?

I say yes as long as the burial isn't going to affect others.

For example, getting buried in your own backyard. Sounds like a good idea. But what happens once your family decides to move or has to sell? Do you think people would really be wiling to buy a property that includes a burial ground?

Viking Funeral

posted on Aug, 6 2009 @ 03:07 PM

Originally posted by jam321 Do you think people would really be wiling to buy a property that includes a burial ground?

I would if it meant a lower asking price and lower tax rate.

I'd even tend to the graves and keep open visiting hours.

Creepiness < monetary savings

Resell value wouldnt bother me. I'm not one to sell off land once I've acquired it.

posted on Aug, 6 2009 @ 03:09 PM
Personally i dont want to be cremated, dont like the thought of it.

I want to be buried in all manner of weird and wonderful clothing. With all sorts of funky accessories. With an array of strange artifacts.

So that in 800 years time, some archeologists (hopefully some sort of Time Team program) will dig me up and be completely baffled by me.

'OK, so what have we got?'

' appears we have a male, ice skating, circus performing, cross-dressing astronaut who loved to play the saxophone in his spare time. Oh, and it appears he was the King Of England at some stage too.'

You know, mess with their heads a little

posted on Aug, 6 2009 @ 03:11 PM
Yes, if you own the property, and if within a town or city be fenced in, I see nothing wrong with that. In or own history this was done when people started moving west, so were laid to rest beside the trail. It's either that, or we run out of space to bury the dead.

posted on Aug, 6 2009 @ 03:36 PM
Absolutely we should be able to. Its funny how what takes care of 99.9% of all dead carcassas on earth is deemed too lowly for our own bodies.
As long as the hole is dug deep enough it would literally make absolutely no difference and would cause zero health issues.
Government-propped industry, IMO and completely unnecessary for people to be going broke or tax dollars to be spent on a basic service the earth provides for free.
Honestly, maybe it would be good for people to take care of their own dead these days. Might be a reality check.

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