Following nearly 100% of prenatal diagnoses of Down syndrome in Iceland, parents chose to kill their child in the womb, according to a recent report by CBS News. The almost complementary twitter caption for this article suggested that the people of Iceland had found a cure for Down syndrome, rather than simply killing countless children for their disability. The media reaction to eugenics has been disturbingly positive.
If this slaughter was not horrifying enough, consider all the people who view it with indifference or even approval. Parents ask for tests to decide whether their child has a right to life and their society behaves as if nothing is amiss. The desire to live in comfort leads so many to ignore the horrible price, the uncomfortable truth. In Iceland, your humanity is conditional.
A society ostensibly dedicated to combating ableism eradicates a condition by killing those who have it. It indicates not only enormous selfishness and moral decay but also the return of an evil ideology from the past, eugenics.
History of Eugenics
Initially, many saw eugenics as simply a step towards improving society by applying the research of Mendel and Darwin to humans. However, eugenics quickly became an instrument of the culture of death and a source of countless violations of our rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
Parts of the United States, including Virginia, embraced this practice. The state government sterilized countless people with mental illness and other conditions. At the same time, Margaret Sanger, a chief proponent of eugenics and the founder of Planned Parenthood sought to prevent minorities from having children. Just as some eugenicists killed the disabled to “improve” humanity, Sanger sought to limit the number of African-American births in the country. Her legacy lives on in Planned Parenthood and the alt-right. The first is responsible for the murder of countless unborn African-Americans, while many in the latter group support abortion for the same reason.
The National Socialists in Germany adopted many of these ideas. The elderly, the mentally disabled, the physically disabled, the Jews, and many minorities within the region conquered by the Nazis were systematically slaughtered, ostensibly in pursuit of a “better” mankind. The horror which the widespread application of eugenics in Nazi Germany caused would temporarily damage the popularity of the practice throughout the West. It seems we are beginning to forget.