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The Value of Life

            The value of human life is still and may always be an undiscovered curiosity. During early times, to some people, life was not valued at all. People were used as slaves and treated like nothing. Today, our society thinks that professional athletes, singers, or actors are "worth more" than people who have good hearts but who do not make as much money. We base the value of life by their achievements, past, or the salary they receive. This shouldn't be the way we value one's life. We as a society cannot and should not assign a value on one's life. Value is something which each individual assigns to their life depending on how much meaning it has to them self and others. A life is not a self-contained object; it is a network, which is shared with others and their own personal experiences. All people have value not just to themselves but to others as well. If a friend died tomorrow one's entire network of friends and family would surely grieve for that person. All of the people whose lives we have touched would grieve for you. In Hamlet's soliloquy, he neglected to consider what affect his life had on his family and friends. Everyone whether they realize it or not, has some kind of effect on the people around them. Hamlet thought of his own life as worthless and thought everyone else did as well.
             In the article "What Is a Life Worth" by Amanda Ripley, states that in these days we base life on money, "The courts started to put a dollar value on a life-after death" (Ripley). The government doesn't seem to care about human life. It tries to replace loss with money. How can the value of one's life be bought? After the attacks of September 11, 2001, the federal government started a federal fund to help the victims and families of victims of the attacks. First they figure out how much the victims would have earned if had there not been attacks. Now that they have the victim's foundation money, they subtract the money they get from life insurance, pension, Social Security death benefits, and worker's compensation.

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