Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Progressivism Through the Ages

 I was preparing my 14th Amendment class for the spring semester and I was looking for a reputable source concerning Sweden's mandatory sterilization laws (1934-74).  I found this 8/29/1997 Washington Post article:

The victims were young and mostly female, judged to be rebellious or promiscuous, of low intelligence or perhaps of mixed blood. One was a young woman whose priest believed she had not learned her confirmation lessons well enough, another who couldn't read a blackboard because she did not have eyeglasses and was deemed to be retarded.

In the eyes of Swedish authorities, they were misfits in a forward-looking nation, and for that they paid a terrible price: sterilization at the hands of the state, often against their will. From 1934 to 1974, 62,000 Swedes were sterilized as part of a national program grounded in the science of racial biology and carried out by officials who believed they were helping to build a progressive, enlightened welfare state.

8/29/1997 Associated Press:

Like Sweden and many other European countries, Denmark began its sterilization program in the grip of enthusiasm for eugenics, the belief in improving the human race by controlling breeding.

The theory was founded by Sir Francis Galton of Britain in the 1880s. It acquired popularity in the early half of the 20th century, when many nations, including the United States, sterilized people declared insane.

``In Denmark, eugenics was considered an obvious solution to huge social problems,″ Koch said.

The forced sterilization program in Denmark mainly was directed at people who were mentally handicapped, Koch said.



  1. In Starship Troopers, the teachers of Moral Philosophy said that "Men Are Not Potatoes." It also may be said that Men are not Dogs, to be bred like Pekingese or Labradors.