Eugenic Abortion

CAL THOMAS

July 20, 1993|By CAL THOMAS

WASHINGTON BTC — Washington. -- The Freedom of Choice Act, perhaps the most disingenuously named piece of legislation since ''deficit reduction,'' is in trouble.

Those who support the act's original intent -- abortion on demand, for any reason and at any time during pregnancy -- are worried. That's because amendments allowing for parental notification of minors and a prohibition against federal funding of abortions, could deflect what they regard as the silver bullet that would end the 20-year-old abortion wars.

Perhaps the most significant defector so far is Sen. Carol Moseley-Braun, D-Ill., who announced her withdrawal as a sponsor of the bill. She said she could no longer support the legislation because of its parental-notification provision and its allowance for state funding restrictions on abortions for poor women.

It is especially noteworthy that Senator Moseley-Braun, an African-American, would favor taxpayer subsidies for abortion for the poor. Of all people, she should be sensitive to the underlying but unspoken message of free abortions for the poor. An exchange between Ken Auletta of the New York Daily News and Nat Hentoff of the Village Voice exposed it.

Mr. Auletta wrote of the ''incalculable costs'' of restricting abortion: ''More future city criminals will be incubated, unwanted kids, entering the world without nurturing and self-esteem.''

Responded Mr. Hentoff: ''So the battle for abortion rights is not -- as we've been told all along -- solely a matter of preserving an individual woman's right to manage her life. There is an added dimension -- the equation of abortion with a public- service responsibility to keep the population down, especially to keep the population in the ghetto down.''

At the heart of much of the abortion debate has been a thinly veiled racism. For some, abortion has become the great white hope of reducing the ''race problem.'' Some black leaders used to understand this -- but that was when the war against black America was more visible.

Planned Parenthood's founder, Margaret Sanger, was a strong believer in eugenics. It seems she didn't want to help poor women -- she wanted to eliminate them. In 1922, she attacked social workers, philanthropists and church leaders for ''the cruelty of charity.'' She said attempts to help the poor were the ''surest sign that our civilization has bred, is breeding and is perpetuating constantly increasing numbers of defectives, delinquents and dependents.'' She said, ''If we must have welfare, give it to the rich, not the poor.'' In her beliefs about ''breeding'' and ''defectives,'' she is no different from many of our contemporaries, who couch their views in more acceptable, but equally dangerous, language.

Sanger's goal was to ''eliminate . . . the benign imbeciles, who encourage the defective and diseased elements of humanity in their reckless and irresponsible swarming and spawning.'' She regarded birth control and abortion as ''essential to the future of the race and the world.'' By ''the race,'' of course, she meant the white race.

This is the ultimate goal of the Freedom of Choice Act. Blacks and other minorities that are largely poor are being asked to be accessories in the killing of their own people.

Senator Moseley-Braun may be considered an accomplice in the eugenics-Planned Parenthood-Freedom of Choice Act conspiracy to hold down the ghetto population. It is good that she is no longer a co-sponsor of the bill. Better had she withdrawn for the right reason.

Cal Thomas is a syndicated columnist.

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