An online auction house based in a tax haven on a British island has put a vial up for sale that allegedly contains Ronald Reagan's blood. According to the seller, this now dry sample was collected in a hospital on March 30, 1981,when the former U.S. president was attacked by an insane person (Reagan actually died in 2004). Understandably, the news has infuriated the Reagan family; they have denied the authenticity of the sample, on behalf of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and the American Medical Association.
This isn't the first or last sale of political relics. As The Atlantic magazine points out, the U.S. lacks the remains of its historical figures, unlike Europe, as well as an official organization to celebrate such remains. As a result, they seek more recent memorabilia. For instance, the bloodstained sheets from former President Lincoln’s assassination, in addition to Jackie Kennedy’s bloodstained dress from the night of her husband’s murder have been preserved and stored.
Not even we Europeans are free from this craze for memorabilia: Napoleon Bonaparte's penis is still preserved and we even sold one of John Lennon's teeth.
The tube containing what is supposed to be Reagan's blood has been put up for sale by the son of a now deceased former employee at a George Washington University Hospital lab, where the president was operated on. He refused to donate the blood to the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation, who, according to the seller, threatened to alert the FBI.
“I was a real fan of Reaganomics and felt that President Reagan himself would rather see me sell it rather than donating it,” assured the seller on the auction web page in a comment that is attached to the vial. Incidentally, on May 23, the final bid was over €11,000, ($13,654) after an €1,800 starting price.
In the future, it may be useful to clone the president that embodied neoliberalism, but in the light of current circumstances, that would not be wise.