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.
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