May 2nd 2012, 15:06
Aside from death and taxes, life's only other certainty is that you have a body, over which you have complete sovereignty and which is protected by law, including human rights legislation. If somebody attacks you, the assailant will be prosecuted and punished - indeed, any action on your body carried out without your full consent is a criminal offence.
The only people who seem to disregard this absolute right are doctors, as our Special Report this month explores (http://www.wddty.com/the-dark-heart-of-medicine.html). They pay lip service to the legal concept of consent, especially before surgery and other interventions, but their requirement is nothing more than a signature at the end of a long document, almost never read by the patient.