29th January 2005
I got wondering about this after reading this article here about the state of North Carolina and their forced sterilization programs of certain 'undesirable' peoples that ran up through the 1970s. As the article points out there are believed to be at least 7000 people still around who were forced through this program and the state and population deciding how to best atone for what had occurred under the program. Many states in the US had this running in those times and other countries did too- IIRC Sweden had a rather notable one that ran through the mid-century. All of these were done under similar reasons to 'strengthen' the population and lighten the burden on state programs.
This of course brings up all sorts of problems, and to me it was rather disturbing (as it was when I first learned about it some years ago) the strength some programs granted to their agents in carrying out these sterilization, with often minority or rural poor getting the burden of the program. Then the lengths it went to under Nazi Germany's Eugenics programs.
I'm not aware of any ongoing programs (not counting chemical castration of sexual offenders in some places) along these lines, though some states still have legislation left over from this era. But signs of it still exist through those who had been permanently affected by the procedure in the past.
What are your thoughts on these programs? How to move beyond them?
Lord of the Peach
19th April 2004
They were redundant. Most people with severe mental and physical defects never get to reproduce because they are often heavily sheltered by their caretakers.
I would like to see this program stay around as a voluntary system that is open to anyone. I know I don't want kids, and getting "fixed" for free by the state would be great for me and many other who have realized that they do not want kids.
I would support the castration of sexual offenders who have physically assaulted another person with strongly convincing evidence. If you are felon you cannot legally hold a gun. Why should a person who uses their penis a weapon be allowed to keep it?
I'm too cool to Post
17th July 2003
I remember reading about a woman who got pregnant several times and was convicted of child abandonment and child neglect. She was getting pregnant toget money from the state but didnt take care of her kids to the poin that I think one or two died and at least one other was I think sold into child sex ring.
I want to say this woman was from the State I live in which is Indiana.
IIRC the Court ordered her sterilized because she was declared on multiple counts of being an unfit mother and was prohibited from having children again.
I work with "Intellectually challenged" individuals. Some are there from birth problems and some received injuries. I know of two people off hand that have brain injuries. One was dropped as a baby, the other was in a auto accident.
Neither have much of a chance of reproduction.
Preventing the birth of people who MIGHT have genetic defects seems wrong. And since the eugenics programs seemed aimed at a certain racial or cultural profile then it seems even more wrong if not down right criminal.
29th November 2003
In 1935 Finland introduced a sterilization law that allowed mentally challenged or mentally ill people to be sterilized against their will. Since 1970 only the target can request sterilization.
On a related note epileptics were forbidden to marry until 1969, unless they were granted permission by the president.
I have a somewhat personal hatred of eugenics programs, since my dad had mental problems that could easily have made him a victim of one, had he only been born before the wars when the law was actively taken advantage of. Now he wasn't, and he married and had five children. All of which are just as sane as most people, and were or are at the top of their class in school...
29th February 2004
Huffardo;5592953All of which are just as sane as most people, and were or are at the top of their class in school...
Huffardo, I remember you saying recently that you were to lazy to finish the course standing between you and your Master's. :P
Kidding aside, I might agree with Eugenics when it comes to violent criminals and/or criminally insane. I believe Russia has a program that targets violent sexual offenders.
29th November 2003
Biiviz;5592955Huffardo, I remember you saying recently that you were to lazy to finish the course standing between you and your Master's. :P
True, but that's after I learned to procrastinate properly. I actually sometimes read course books in school. =p
23rd March 2008
Biiviz;5592955Kidding aside, I might agree with Eugenics when it comes to violent criminals and/or criminally insane. I believe Russia has a program that targets violent sexual offenders.
I think violent sexual offenders should be executed rather than sterilized, but that's just me.
I didn't make it!
The mentality that if you castrate or neuter offenders that the underlying problem will go away or it’ll be a suitable punishment for the crime; seems to me, a bit barbaric.
That presupposes rape is only about sex, when it’s not.
What does this kind of thinking really translate to. Should someone violently beat another, do we cut their arms off? If one steals, do we lop off their hands? If one flees from prosecution, should they be hobbled? What of nonverbal insolence and disobedience. Blinding?
What of female offenders as well? Genital mutilation?
If its too the point where you consider cutting pieces off of them. You really have to ask yourself, for what? Why keep them around at all? To be good little worker bee’s? To find new crimes? How about to serve as examples, or deliver comeuppance for their barbaric treatment? At what point does the justice system become worse than the criminal element?
No, just kill them, and be on with it.
Voice of joy and sunshine
26th May 2003
Why move beyond them? Eliminating genetic defects by preventing those carrying them from breeding seems a perfectly logical approach. At least on first blush - whether the cost/benefit ratio would work out profitably.... -shrug-
The problem is that people tend to use eugenics to go after those they don't like, rather than those with actual genetic faults. Let's go after the mentally ill and the Jews and so on... and then people think that's an argument against eugenics in general rather than an argument against ill-informed eugenics. However, there doesn't seem to be anything wrong with the idea of stopping someone with Huntingtons, for instance, having children. That seems like something we should be doing.
There are heritable defects out there. Things where there's not a lot of room to say that it isn't a defect.
I R Scary Eyeball
29th January 2004
Sedistix;5593090No, just kill them, and be on with it.
Or, you know, lock them up perhaps? That's what we have prisons for after all.