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Thursday, October 06, 2005

Strange bedfellows... or not so strange?

Stop the ACLU
“In 1920, two German professors published a small book advocating the killing of people whose lives were "devoid of value." Nineteen years later, the professors' proposal became reality when Nazi Germany established a euthanasia program targeting physically and mentally disabled children, elderly patients in long-term care, and invalids from World War I.”_1_
Others worldwide agreed, among them such “leading intellectuals” as  George Bernard Shaw, Margaret Sanger, Francis Galton, Woodrow Wilson, Oliver Wendell Holmes and Louis Brandeis. Oh, and the not-so-intellectual Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin came on board as time went on, too.
“The theory of eugenics postulated a crisis of the gene pool leading to the deterioration of the human race. The best human beings were not breeding as rapidly as the inferior ones --- the foreigners, immigrants, Jews, degenerates, the unfit, and the ‘feeble minded’ … As Margaret Sanger said, ‘Fostering the good-for-nothing at the expense of the good is an extreme cruelty … there is not greater curse to posterity than that of bequeathing them an increasing population of imbeciles.’ She spoke of the burden of caring for ‘this dead weight of human waste.’ ”_2_
Among other tools for eliminating “this dead weight of human waste” (“unwanted” human lives “not worth living”), eugenicists espoused euthanasia as a positive value.
Fast forward…
Euthanasia today is represented as a positive choice for people whose lives are a burden to themselves or others, but
“Informed consent is a sham, says Dr. Chevlen, ‘behind which doctors may hide the awful fact that it is really they who make the life-and-death decisions for their patients. Legalized euthanasia is not freedom to choose; it is not even freedom to die. It is freedom to be killed.’ “ _3_

and Lucy Gwin puts the issue firmly in perspective with an account of a group of disabled folk (of which she’s a member) fighting to retain their right to life.  Fighting, among others, the ACLU

“Harder for them to accept was the fact that the Right to Die is mis-named. Hey, I told them, you've got that right already. What's missing now, and what the Right to Die provides, is the right for physician to kill patients without criminal penalty.” _4_
The whole thing is worth reading.
So, is the ACLU really philosophical bedfellows with Stalin, Hitler and Sanger on the issue of euthanasia?
_5_, _6_, _7_
“Remember, it is the American Civil Liberties Union which is now behind all abortion on demand, euthanasia, and coming soon perhaps, infanticide for impaired babies.” (an O’Reilly’s Talking Points Memo excerpt)

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