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Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Eugenics: The Time is Now!

It is with great sadness and abiding anger that I type these words. I admit that, only a few months before, I really couldn't imagine this to be necessary. The should NOT be happening now, in the post-Hitler era. Not that it should ever have happened, but... We've learned! We know better! Or, so I would have thought.

Somehow, I thought it couldn't ever happen. Somehow, I thought we had become more humane than this. Somehow, I would have never known this had been happening for six years in the Netherlands!

Times Online has this story:

When Frank and Anita's daughter Chanou was born with an extremely rare, incurable illness in August 2000, they knew that her life would be short and battled against the odds to make it happy.

They struggled around the clock against their baby's pain. "We tried all sorts of things," said Anita, a 37-year-old local government worker. "She cried all the time. Every time I touched her it hurt."

Chanou was suffering from a metabolic disorder that had resulted in abnormal bone development. Doctors gave her no more than 30 months to live. "We felt terrible watching her suffer," said Anita at their home near Amsterdam. "We felt we were letting her down."

Frank and Anita began to believe that their daughter would be better off dead. "She kept throwing up milk that was fed through a tube in her nose," said Anita. "She seemed to be saying, 'Mummy, I don't want to live any more. Let me go'."

Eventually, doctors agreed to help the baby die at seven months. The feeding was stopped. Chanou was given morphine. "We were with her at that last moment," said Anita. "She was exhausted. She took a very deep last breath. It was so peaceful. It made me feel at peace inside to know that she wasn't suffering any more."

Even so, they felt that the suffering had gone on too long. Child euthanasia is illegal in Holland and doctors were afraid of being prosecuted. "It was a long road to find the humane solution that we reluctantly decided we wanted," said Frank, a bank worker.

Now, they're working to legalize it!

If you really didn't think this could happen again... you were wrong!!!

Thanks to 4TheLittleGuy for bringing this to my attention.


At 3/18/2006 1:14 AM, Blogger Joey said...

I did a paper and presentation on eugenics in college. I was amazed at how many of our nation's leaders were in favor of it, including Teddy Roosevelt and Alexander Graham Bell. Very sad.

At 3/18/2006 9:14 PM, Blogger Stephanie said...

Eugenics used to be a very acceptable notion. Sad, but true. I just kind of thought that human beings had grown beyond that...at least in the "civilized" world.


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