Carrie & mother Emma Buck deemed "imbeciles," "sexually promiscuous" in Virginia
By Hank Beckman -
Seymour Glass, eldest child in J.D. Salinger's fictional family of mid-twentieth century Manhattan intellectuals, once told a radio audience that if an honest man had to say anything on the anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg and the thousands of casualties it produced, he "should simply have come forward and shaken his fist" and walked off the stage.
It’s pretty hard to completely accept Seymour’s argument on the defining battle of the Civil War, although any reasonable person can understand lamenting the loss of human life. But after all, the war did end slavery, an institution that also claimed its share of lives.
But thanks to rhetoric and actions taken by our progressive friends and their current views regarding the value of life, I’ve recently become familiar with the fist-shaking impulse.
In New York, the Democrat-dominated State Assembly recently passed legislation allowing abortion up until the moments before birth. Technically, it only allows late-term abortions in cases where the mother’s health is in peril, but the wording of the bill leaves the definition of what constitutes a threat to the mother’s health vague enough to allow almost any definition to suffice.
Democrats have also been busy in Virginia, introducing similar legislation that prompted Gov. Ralph Northam, also a Democrat, to make the most blood-curdling admission about how a baby born with deformities might be murdered even after making it through delivery.
The legislation was introduced by Democrat delegate Kathy Tran, and would relax restrictions on third trimester abortions, among them the requirement that two extra doctors sign off on late-term abortions.
Questioned by a fellow delegate if an abortion would be allowed if the actual birth process was underway, Tran responded, “My bill would allow that.”
Tran later tried to walk back her comments by saying she “misspoke,” and stressing that infanticide was not allowed in Virginia.
But in a following interview, Northam confirmed that infanticide was exactly what Democrats were hoping to legalize.
“If a mother is in labor, I can tell you exactly what would happen,” Northam said. “The infant would be delivered. The infant would be kept comfortable. The infant would resuscitated, if that’s what the mother and family desired, and then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother.”
But if you’re genuinely surprised, you haven’t been paying attention. The recent rhetoric from some pro-choice advocates regarding abortion procedures already legal leaves no doubt that infanticide is the next stop in this country’s slide toward depravity.
Incredibly, there actually exists a #Shout Your Abortion movement, complete with a Twitter hashtag, a book, and a group of dedicated activists striving to take the stigma out of abortion and make its practitioners feel good about themselves.
Arising out of threats to public funding for Planned Parenthood, #Shout Your Abortion’s book allows women to share their positive experiences and stresses that abortion is normal. You can even go online and order various t-shirts supporting the cause.
The actress Martha Plimpton, star of "Goonies" and long-time character actor, last year confided to a studio audience in Seattle that she had special feelings about the city because it was the location of her first abortion. And her best, she proclaimed proudly!
In another era, say 20 years ago, during the Clinton administration when the stated goal was to make abortion “safe, legal and rare,” the reaction to Plimpton’s crude boast would have been, in the least, shocked silence; maybe even a collective gasp, or a smattering of boos.
But apparently, our culture has been degraded to the point where eve Plimpton’s macabre comments drew enthusiastic cheering and applause from the audience. (Well, it is Seattle)
And Northam has doubled down on his comments approving of infanticide; New York Governor Andrew Cuomo responded by lighting up the One World Trade Center and other public monuments in pink in honor of the legislation; #Shout Your Abortion shows no signs of slowing down; Democratic politicians everywhere are strangely silent on the issue.
First trimester abortions—which the vast majority of abortions are—are no longer even a difficult question or a moral dilemma for many. There seems to not be the slightest trace of remorse or guilt, not the slightest awareness that a human life is being snuffed out. So is it any wonder that the movement will inevitably come to endorse murdering children already born?
These people might have been comfortable during another period in American history when it was fashionable, especially among many elites, to essentially let human beings play God with the reproductive process.
In the early years of the 20th Century, it was thought that our elites possessed the wisdom and the moral authority to determine which segments of society should be allowed to reproduce.
Edwin Black provides the definitive history of this period in "The War Against the Weak: Eugenics and America's Campaign to Create a Master Race."
Black depicts a movement based on what its proponents sold as scientific principles, but whose methods were questionable and biases obvious.
The goal was to create a healthier, more intelligent population by gradually eliminating all but those from pure Nordic stock.
Those targeted were poor Southern Whites, African Americans, Southern and Eastern Europeans, Jews, petty criminals, the mentally ill, those with lower IQs, and those that the medical establishment of the era determined were "imbeciles" or "feeble-minded."
Helped by the support of Planned Parenthood, the Rockefeller Foundation and the Carnegie Institute, legislation was enacted in various states outlawing marriage for anyone belonging to a group classified as "undesirable."
Most chilling, laws were enacted mandating the forced sterilization of those thought to being in danger of being a burden on the community or habitual criminals.
Between the years 1907 and 1963, about 64,000 American citizens were subjected to coercive sterilization, the majority of them women.
The Supreme Court even signed off on the policy, most notoriously in Buck v. Bell, in which the court affirmed the right of the state of Virginia to forcibly sterilize Carrie Buck, a poor white woman incarcerated in the Virginia State Colony for Epileptics and the Feebleminded.
The primary evidence for Ms. Buck’s feeblemindedness was that she gave birth out of wedlock after being raped by a relative. So the state, against her will, sterilized her by performing a tubal ligation on her.
Her legal action, actually a test case prompted by the very people who sterilized her, was an effort to see if the new sterilization law would be considered constitutional. They weren’t disappointed, as the Court ruled 8 to 1 in the State’s favor.
No less a progressive historical icon than Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes was in complete agreement with the government standing in for God in Ms. Buck’s case, infamously declaring that, “three generations of imbeciles are enough.”
Even with progressives, the eugenics movement fell somewhat out of favor after the carnage of the Second World War, the openly racist Nazis and the horrors of the Holocaust. But it didn’t really end until the 1960s, when the last of the eugenics statutes were overturned.
But that was a long time ago, right? You might think that nothing like that could happen in the modern world, especially in the United States, where people enjoy civil rights and the rule of law to protect them.
Between 2006 and 2010, 148 incarcerated women in California were illegally sterilized using the same tubal ligation procedure that Ms. Buck was forced to undergo nearly a century before.
The state neglected to satisfy the legal requirement that prison officials obtain an outside review of each case to ensure that the procedures were really consensual.
Because of the scarcity of media attention paid to the case, most people probably haven’t heard of it; but it happened. Not decades ago, in a less enlightened time, in a less enlightened country.
It happened in the last decade in the United States of America.
If that doesn’t make you shake your fist at somebody, you’re in need of a little soul-searching.
Margaret Sanger wrote in her book Pivot of Civilization, calling for the:
“Elimination of ‘human weeds’ … overrunning the human garden; for the cessation of ‘charity’ because it prolonged the lives of the unfit; for the segregation of ‘morons, misfits, and the maladjusted’; and for the sterilization of genetically inferior races.”
Margaret Sanger wrote in her autobiography that she addressed a Klu Klux Klan rally in Silver Lake, New Jersey in 1938.
Margaret Sangers’ magazine The Birth Control Review published an article by Nazi Party member Ernst Rüdin, one of the “fathers of racial hygiene.”
Margaret Sanger, who promoted “eugenics” and “forced sterilization” to eliminate inferior races.
Yet Sanger is held up as a hero of the left…