Monday, April 15, 2013

Eugenics and Intelligence

Eugenics was a movement that really picked up around the 1920s. I was basically when governments place laws in affect that enabled people deemed mentally unfit could be legally forced to get sterilized. The idea behind it was that because of darwinism, the world didn't need more people with mental or physical disabilities, and by sterilizing these people that already had any sort of "disability", the number of newborns with these problems would decrease.

The article I read about eugenics talked about the infamous Buck vs. Bank case in 1927. The court unfairly decided that Carrie Buck was feeble-minded. Because of this, the court got approved to sterilize her, and her sister, which they did without telling her. Carries sister did not find out till she was 60 that her "apendicitis" surgery was actually a surgery to sterilized her.

What is terrible about all this is not only that the court can force these women to ruin their bodies, but in Carries case, she was wrongly deemed "feeble-minded". In fact, Carry and her daughter were both on the honor roll during their time at school.

This case reminds me of the genital mutilation that goes on all over 3rd world countries. Its amazing to me that living in a country like america, where we brag about "freedom", a women can be forced into mutilating her body because society unfairly accuses her of being dumb.

Another thing I thought about was how this article mentioned that this practice wasn't used as much as it had been in germany because the law was poorly written. I feel if a law is not well written, people should definitely question it. If the writer of the law cannot take the time to think through what they are writing, then maybe their intelligence, and ability to make such a strong impact should be questioned instead of questioning the intelligence of a women who had unfortunate luck.

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