How little we know

As you may recall, I thought it was a mistake to stave and dehydrate Terri Schiavo to death.  We know so little about the human brain and, as long as her parents were cheerfully willing to care for her, I thought it was out and out murder to bar them from providing that care.

It’s been a long time since Terri Schiavo died, but I thought of her when I read a story in the L.A. Times about Samantha Palumbo, a 16 year old girl who lost almost her entire left frontal lobe in a car accident.  As good as dead you’d think, right?  Wrong.  Read the story and then look at and listen to the photo essay.  If, at the end, you’re not tremendously moved and awed by the human capacity to recover, you’d better read and listen again, because you missed something.

Everything old is new again

The Captain says that the earth itself just reminded us of yet another horrible Nazi practice:  euthanizing those Aryans whom the Nazis deemed physically or mentally unfit to live.  In a Western Germany town, relying on sixty years of rumors, authorities dug up a mass grave that included skeletons of children as young as one.  As the Captain points out, the Nazis murdered over 70,000 “defective” Aryans (amongst whom was my gentile great uncle, a manic depressive).  This was, of course, in addition to the better known racial purges of Jews (including most of my paternal relatives) and gypsies.

Before we start congratulating ourselves about how superior we are, though, we’d better look at our own house.  I’m thinking, of course, of famed ethicist Peter Singer, who holds an endowed chair at Princeton.  In addition to a 2004 book about politics, The President of Good and Evil: The Ethics of George W. Bush, Peter Singer has written a fair number of other books. These include a book called “Animal Liberation,” a book called “In Defense of Animals, and a book called “Should the Baby Live?: The Problem of Handicapped Infants (Studies in Bioethics).” The latter pretty much sums up the man’s philosophy:  he advocates euthanizing handicapped infants.  He is, of course, reviled by the handicapped community (and rightly so).

The moral abyss Singer creates with his euthanasia musings is highlighted by the fact that his animal liberation writings make him a founding father of the animal rights movement — a movement that’s come to full flower in PETA insanity (which analogizes the death of chickens to the death of Jews in Hitler’s gas chambers). In other words, Singer believes that a healthy animal has greater rights than a sick person.  Singer has also made clear that he has no moral problem with bestiality, provided that the animal consents. Amusingly, this last viewpoint has put Singer at odds with the same animal rights movement he was so instrumental in creating.

Singer, of course, is one man, but our ivory towers have given him a position of prominence and respect.  That being the case, we should take special note of this story about the unearthed past, since there is at least one person with a pulpit who would have this be our future.

Hezbollah takes a page from the Nazi script

Before the Nazis killed the Jews, they executed those they deemed unfit because of physical or mental handicaps. My goyish uncle, who was institutionalized because he was “crazy” (we now think he might have been homosexual), was one of the first the Nazis executed in their drive to purify the Aryan nation.

In yet another scary analogy between Hezbollah and the Nazis, reports are emerging from the Lebanese themselves that Hezbollah may have “seeded” the building in Qana with mentally and physically handicapped children, and then deliberately exposed the building to Israeli missile fire. In that way, they got two for the price of one: they got rid of children they deemed unworthy of life and they managed to score a major propaganda coup against Israel.

With regard to the latter point — that Hezbollah set it up so that Israel pulled the trigger — it is worthwhile again remembering Golda Meir’s words: “When peace comes, we will perhaps in time be able to forgive the Arabs for killing our sons. But it will be harder for us to forgive them for having forced us to kill their sons.” How much harder will it be for the Israelis, who were themselves victims of a genocide aimed at racial purification, ever to forgive Hezbollah for making Israel the hand that may have carried out Hezbollah’s deranged vision of racial purification.

I’ll mention here, because I can’t resist, that Peter Singer, a leading American ethicist wiuth an endowed chair at Princeton would agree with the Nazis and Hezbollah. He advocates giving parents a 30 day window within which to destroy “defective” infants. Like Hitler, he too is a vegetarian, although I doubt Hitler would have been okay with Singer’s support for bestiality — as long as the cow consents. He’s also a virulent anti-Bush critic, who has argued that Bush is evil. I don’t know if that last fact tells us more about the loonies attracted to Bush Derangement Syndrome, or about how grateful we should be that Bush, and not someone of whom Singer approves, is President.

Hat tip: American Thinker

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Soylent Green nation

Rumors about organ harvesting surface constantly when it comes to China, and they probably have a good foundation given that, working through China, you can get any organ you need, any time.  Now, Jay Nordlinger comes with a fairly detailed report (with lots of links) that China is using Falun Gong practitioners as their preferred organ providers.  It's a story that deserves reading on its own and in conjunction with the post I did yesterday on the officially sanctioned infant killing spree in Holland. 

The conclusion I draw from both these stories is that the Judeo-Christian doctrine is one of the highest forms of humane thinking.  Neither Communism nor Secular thinking offer something as simple as God's order: "Choose life." 

Some time ago, I wrote a column for American Thinker about how the Democrats are embracing a culture of death in America.  To toot my own horn, it bears re-reading, since I think we stand at the beginning of the slippery slope, and China and Holland remind us of where that slope goes.

Lives that are not worth living

In a recent Weekly Standard article, Wesley Smith takes on the infant euthanasia that is gaining traction in Holland.  His opening paragraphs are models of clear writing:

At last a high government official in Europe got up the nerve to chastise the Dutch government for preparing to legalize infant euthanasia. Italy's Parliamentary Affairs minister, Carlo Giovanardi, said during a radio debate: "Nazi legislation and Hitler's ideas are reemerging in Europe via Dutch euthanasia laws and the debate on how to kill ill children."

Unsurprisingly, the Dutch, ever prickly about international criticism of their peculiar institution, were outraged. Giovanardi's critique cut so deeply that even Dutch Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende felt the need to respond, sniffing, "This [Giovanardi's assertion] is scandalous and unacceptable. This is not the way to get along in Europe."

As is often the case in the New Europe, what is said matters more than what is done. Thus, the prime minister of the Netherlands thinks that killing babies because they are born with terminal or seriously disabling conditions is not a scandal, but daring to point out accurately that German doctors did the same during World War II, is.

As he gets deeper into his column, Smith notes that making Nazi comparisons can shut down dialog and allow even those engaged in egregious behavior to deflect criticism.  However, he then goes on to point out the many disturbing parallels between the Nazi program and the Dutch program.  Indeed, it seems as if the only distinct difference between the two is motive:  the Dutch kill from compassionate motives, the Nazis killed to cleanse their society.  But killing is still killing.

The article piqued my interest at two levels.  First, I knew little about the Nazi euthanasia program except for this:  my great uncle on the goyish side of my family, who was bipolar, was one of the first adult victims of this euthanasia.  Second, it occurred to me that perhaps part of the problem with Europe's ability to integrate its Muslim population may be that this isolated new population looks at a Europe that doesn't value itself and, rightly concludes, that Europe is not worthy of being valued.  And since it's not worthy of being valued, it's obviously okay (a) to kill Europeans (they're killing themselves, after all) and (b) to supplant their own, Islamic culture.