Eugenics and Planned Parenthood

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When one contemplates the concept of eugenics, few think of modern contraception and abortion when in reality they are one in the same. The American Eugenics Society, founded in 1923, proudly proclaimed that men with incurable “conditions” should be sterilized. However these conditions were often none that could be helped, such as, one’s intelligence, race, and social class (Schweikart and Allen 529-532). The purpose of the society was to create the perfect class of men; elite in all ways. Likewise, Margaret Sanger’s feminist, contraceptive movement was not originally founded with this purpose. It was marketed as a way to control the population and be merciful to those yet to be born, again determined also by race and intelligence. The similarities in purpose actually brought the two organizations together to form a “liberating movement” to “aid women” known today as Planned Parenthood (Schweikart and Allen 529-532). The name may sound harmless, but the movement hid a darker purpose, to wean out the lower and less educated in order to create a perfect class.

When created in 1923, the American Eugenics Society exemplified an air of reform with a seemingly positive purpose, however this cannot be further from the truth. In reality, the society polluted the air with myths of weeding out imperfections with the Galtonian ideal, the breeding of the fittest (Carison). The founder of the society, Charles Davensport , preached that those who are imperfect should be eliminated(Marks). From the school desk to the pulpit, the fallacies of the eugenics movement were forced into society. Preachers often encouraged the best to marry the best while biology professors would encourage DNA testing to find out ones fate (Selden). A...

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