Quote of the Day: Defending Margaret Sanger on Eugenics

 

“Framing access to reproductive health care and bodily autonomy as eugenics exposes a fundamental misunderstanding of the racialized gender oppression on which antiabortionists stand. The truth is, the anti-abortion movement was born out of racist and xenophobic concerns about the falling white birth rate—echoes of which you will hear in today’s white supremacist rhetoric.”
— Alexis McGill Johnson, President & CEO, Planned Parenthood Federation of America

This quotation came from the op-ed page of the Wall Street Journal a few weeks ago. Someone had written a piece criticizing Planned Parenthood. Not surprisingly, the president of the organization decided to respond by attacking the pro-life community with an outrageous accusation. Not only are her comments about the pro-life movement untrue, but she completely mischaracterizes the common understanding of eugenics.

To help clarify the record, here are some descriptions of Margaret Sanger’s eugenics work:

Sanger shaped the eugenics movement in America and beyond in the 1930s and 1940s. Her views and those of her peers in the movement contributed to compulsory sterilization laws in 30 U.S. states that resulted in more than 60,000 sterilizations of vulnerable people, including people she considered ‘feeble-minded,’ ‘idiots’ and ‘morons.’

Or, from her writings:

The main objects of the Population Congress would be to apply a stern and rigid policy of sterilization and segregation to that grade of population whose progeny is tainted, or whose inheritance is such that objectionable traits may be transmitted to offspring[;] to give certain dysgenic groups in our population their choice of segregation or sterilization.

Clearly, Ms. Johnson is “misinformed” about the pro-life movement.

There are 35 comments.

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  1. PHenry Member
    PHenry
    @PHenry

    Susan Quinn: Clearly Ms. Johnson is misinformed about the pro-life movement.

    Not misinformed. Just a liar. The left is very practiced at hiding the foul truth of their philosophy and ideology.

    And once again, the left accuses their opposition of doing what they themselves are actually doing.

    • #1
  2. DonG Coolidge
    DonG
    @DonG

    Leftists are totally deranged. 

    • #2
  3. 9thDistrictNeighbor Member
    9thDistrictNeighbor
    @9thDistrictNeighbor

    Susan Quinn:

    The main objects of the Population Congress would be to apply a stern and rigid policy of sterilization and segregation to that grade of population whose progeny is tainted, or whose inheritance is such that objectionable traits may be transmitted to offspring[;] to give certain dysgenic groups in our population their choice of segregation or sterilization.

    Well then, PP has certainly achieved this given their facilities are so often in or near black neighborhoods. Segregation and sterilization!

    • #3
  4. Rodin Member
    Rodin
    @Rodin

    One has to place eugenics in the broader Progressive agenda: You cannot extract the most cost/benefit from any given population in the “society” that you command if you do not cull disfavored traits. Eugenics is essential to the Progressive Project. Although Progressives would reject Milton Friedman’s formulation that “you can have open borders or a welfare state but not both”, they do understand that you cannot sustain a welfare state without eugenics and worse.

    • #4
  5. MichaelKennedy Inactive
    MichaelKennedy
    @MichaelKennedy

    Anyone who has not seen the movie, “Unplanned” should do so. It lays out the PP agenda very well.

    • #5
  6. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Susan Quinn: Clearly Ms. Johnson is misinformed about the pro-life movement.

    Or accusing the other side of what their founder did. As @douglaspratt just said on another thread, if you want to know what they’re really up to, watch what they accuse the other side of doing.

     

    • #6
  7. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn: Clearly Ms. Johnson is misinformed about the pro-life movement.

    Or accusing the other side of what their founder did. As @douglaspratt just said on another thread, if you want to know what they’re really up to, watch what they accuse the other side of doing.

     

    I meant to be sarcastic; clearly a couple of you have pointed out that didn’t come across. Maybe I should put quotation marks around “misinformed”?

    • #7
  8. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    You just seem like such a nice person, you would never be sarcastic. 😜

    • #8
  9. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    The idea that the President of Planned Parenthood felt compelled to make such an outrageous statement tells me that she was extremely defensive, and as many of you have pointed out, chose to place the blame elsewhere. The Progressive agenda is all about creating a perfect society; if they have people who aren’t “perfect” according to their agenda, well, we must “remove” or “prevent” them in the most efficient way possible. Abhorrent.

    • #9
  10. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Arahant (View Comment):

    You just seem like such a nice person, you would never be sarcastic. 😜

    You, of all people, know me much better than that!! ;-)

     

    • #10
  11. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):
    The Progressive agenda is all about creating a perfect society; if they have people who aren’t “perfect” according to their agenda, well, we must “remove” or “prevent” them in the most efficient way possible. Abhorrent.

    Just like The Guide.

    • #11
  12. Rodin Member
    Rodin
    @Rodin

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):
    The idea that the President of Planned Parenthood felt compelled to make such an outrageous statement tells me that she was extremely defensive….

    Recall they just frogmarched out the last President who was not in full attack mode in response to any anti-PP event.

    • #12
  13. PHenry Member
    PHenry
    @PHenry

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    I meant to be sarcastic; clearly a couple of you have pointed out that didn’t come across. Maybe I should put quotation marks around “misinformed”?

     

    I took it as you being kind to her, so I went ahead and called her a liar for you…

    • #13
  14. Vance Richards Member
    Vance Richards
    @VanceRichards

    Susan Quinn: The truth is, the anti-abortion movement was born out of racist and xenophobic concerns about the falling white birth rate—echoes of which you will hear in today’s white supremacist rhetoric.

    But don’t African-American babies get aborted at much higher rates than white ones? If they are suggesting that pro-lifers are cool with dead black babies and only oppose killing white babies, then the racial disparity in abortions would be celebrated by these white supremacists, no?

     

    • #14
  15. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    PHenry (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    I meant to be sarcastic; clearly a couple of you have pointed out that didn’t come across. Maybe I should put quotation marks around “misinformed”?

     

    I took it as you being kind to her, so I went ahead and called her a liar for you…

    You folks are so good to me! Thanks, @phenry. ;-)

    • #15
  16. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Vance Richards (View Comment):
    But don’t African-American babies get aborted at much higher rates than white ones? If they are suggesting that pro-lifers are cool with dead black babies and only oppose killing white babies, then the racial disparity in abortions would be celebrated by these white supremacists, no?

    I dare you to ask one of them, @vancerichards. Seriously, it is too awful and bizarre to even contemplate.

    • #16
  17. Vectorman Member
    Vectorman
    @Vectorman

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):
    The Progressive agenda is all about creating a perfect society; if they have people who aren’t “perfect” according to their agenda, well, we must “remove” or “prevent” them in the most efficient way possible. Abhorrent.

    Reminds me of the famous 1961 Twilight Zone with Burgess Meredith entitled The Obsolete Man. Back when screen writers had a good moral basis for society:

    The chancellor, the late chancellor, was only partly correct. He *was* obsolete. But so is the State, the entity he worshiped. Any state, any entity, any ideology that fails to recognize the worth, the dignity, the rights of Man, that state is obsolete. A case to be filed under “M” for Mankind – in The Twilight Zone.


    The Quote of the Day series is the easiest way to start a fun conversation on Ricochet. There is only 1 open day left on the October Signup Sheet. We even include tips for finding great quotes, so choose your favorite quote and sign up today!

    • #17
  18. Bishop Wash Member
    Bishop Wash
    @BishopWash

    Rodin (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):
    The idea that the President of Planned Parenthood felt compelled to make such an outrageous statement tells me that she was extremely defensive….

    Recall they just frogmarched out the last President who was not in full attack mode in response to any anti-PP event.

    At the eight-month point of her term too. How apropos that she didn’t get to make it to nine months.

    • #18
  19. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    The idea that the President of Planned Parenthood felt compelled to make such an outrageous statement tells me that she was extremely defensive, and as many of you have pointed out, chose to place the blame elsewhere. The Progressive agenda is all about creating a perfect society; if they have people who aren’t “perfect” according to their agenda, well, we must “remove” or “prevent” them in the most efficient way possible. Abhorrent.

    It’s not Ms. Johnson’s fault. She’s probably a victim product of the public school system.

    • #19
  20. Aaron Miller Member
    Aaron Miller
    @AaronMiller

    It’s remarkable how consistently voices of the Left skip defensive explanations and leap straight into counter-accusations.

    This was not a spontaneous retort. The head of a large organization usually consults with PR advisors to draft such a response. It’s the Democrat strategy to divert attention and misrepresent the opposition.

    • #20
  21. Unsk Member
    Unsk
    @Unsk

    Aaron: “It’s remarkable how consistently voices of the Left skip defensive explanations and leap straight into counter-accusations.”

    The best defense is a good offense.

    Don:” Leftists are totally deranged”

    What’s so very odd is how so many otherwise seemingly normal people can defend such absurd positions without the slightest hint of embarrassment.

    Rather than being deranged, I believe most on the Left are severely brainwashed with some very powerful emotional and social triggers that likely threaten social ostracization that force them to toe the line of the official narrative or else.

    I long for great reckoning of truthfulness and honesty in our societal debate. The foundation of the Left’s “derangement” is our School and University systems that thoroughly indoctrinate our young with these exceedingly demented Leftist ideas. If we were to demand, like at the newly configured Supreme Court that may have 5 solid conservative judges soon, a strict application of the equal protection clause to publicly funded schools and Universities, where all reasonable points of view were given the equal right to be heard, the Leftist stranglehold on the “official” fashionably dominant narrative might be broken.

    Several of the comments have noted that the driving force behind the leftward polarization of official government dogma has been the demand that University study grants toe the Marxist /Progressive line. Again an application of the equal protection clause would cure that problem. That the Supreme Court has allowed this overwhelming Leftist bias to so thoroughly dominate Academia and the Bureaucracy is a national travesty. It is simply a total inversion of what the Founders would have wanted, and has created a new intellectual “aristocracy” that has held sway over much of public policy that the Founders were so against.

    • #21
  22. Manny Member
    Manny
    @Manny

    For the life of me, I have not understood how the left rationalize Margaret Sanger’s eugenics. It’s as clear as night and day. She was clearly a racist. I agree with PHenry’s comment that they lie, but surely the rank and file Liberals have seen the claims. There is no way to defend it but with bald faced lies. But do most Liberals just believe the lies or choose to ignore the truth. I’ve just never understood.

    By the way, I’m acronym handicapped. What does “QOTD” in the title stand for?

    • #22
  23. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Unsk (View Comment):
    If we were to demand, like at the newly configured Supreme Court that may have 5 solid conservative judges soon, a strict application of the equal protection clause to publicly funded schools and Universities, where all reasonable points of view were given the equal right to be heard, the Leftist stranglehold on the “official” fashionably dominant narrative might be broken.

    Great comments, @unsk! I’m trying to remember whether Trump demanded that if schools wanted to continue to receive federal funds, they had to allow for equal opportunity for speech on campuses. It’s not the same as the Supreme Court, but it’s a start–if it was implemented.

    • #23
  24. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Manny (View Comment):

    But do most Liberals just believe the lies or choose to ignore the truth. I’ve just never understood.

    By the way, I’m acronym handicapped. What does “QOTD” in the title stand for?

    Hi, @manny! First, I suspect they do both–believe the lies and ignore the truth–sometimes both at the same time, I suspect.

    QOTD is short for Quote of the Day, for those of us who choose to pick a quote and write a post on it.

    • #24
  25. Manny Member
    Manny
    @Manny

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Manny (View Comment):

    But do most Liberals just believe the lies or choose to ignore the truth. I’ve just never understood.

    By the way, I’m acronym handicapped. What does “QOTD” in the title stand for?

    Hi, @manny! First, I suspect they do both–believe the lies and ignore the truth–sometimes both at the same time, I suspect.

    QOTD is short for Quote of the Day, for those of us who choose to pick a quote and write a post on it.

    Thanks Susan.

    • #25
  26. tigerlily Member
    tigerlily
    @tigerlily

    I was also struck by this portion of her letter to the editor (see below). Can anyone explain to me what “racialized gender oppression” is?

     

    “Framing access to reproductive health care and bodily autonomy as eugenics exposes a fundamental misunderstanding of the racialized gender oppression on which antiabortionists stand

    • #26
  27. Columbo Member
    Columbo
    @Columbo

    Okay, Sanger wasn’t so inept as to really say that explicitly (Dan Rather might say “fake, but accurate”).

    However, she did say this ….

    “It seems to me from my experience … that while the colored Negroes have great respect for white doctors they can get closer to their own members and more or less lay their cards on the table which means their ignorance, superstitions and doubts.

    We should hire three or four colored ministers, preferably with social-service backgrounds, and with engaging personalities. The most successful educational approach to the Negro is through a religious appeal.

    We do not want word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population, and the minister is the man who can straighten out that idea if it ever occurs to any of their more rebellious members”.

     

    • #27
  28. Vance Richards Member
    Vance Richards
    @VanceRichards

    tigerlily (View Comment):
    I was also struck by this portion of her letter to the editor (see below). Can anyone explain to me what “racialized gender oppression” is?

    No, but it’s bad. Real bad, and the only way we are going to defeat it is by . . . um . . . killing babies? Yeah, that’s it, so stop defending the oppressors of gender racialization, or whatever term we are pretending is important.

    • #28
  29. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Columbo (View Comment):

    Okay, Sanger wasn’t so inept as to really say that explicitly (Dan Rather might say “fake, but accurate”).

    However, she did say this ….

    “It seems to me from my experience … that while the colored Negroes have great respect for white doctors they can get closer to their own members and more or less lay their cards on the table which means their ignorance, superstitions and doubts.

    We should hire three or four colored ministers, preferably with social-service backgrounds, and with engaging personalities. The most successful educational approach to the Negro is through a religious appeal.

    We do not want word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population, and the minister is the man who can straighten out that idea if it ever occurs to any of their more rebellious members”.

     

    And Alexis Johnson still claims it’s the anti-abortion movement that’s racist? Sheesh . . .

    • #29
  30. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Columbo (View Comment):

    However, she did say this ….

     

    We should hire three or four colored ministers, preferably with social-service backgrounds, and with engaging personalities. The most successful educational approach to the Negro is through a religious appeal.

    The Reverends Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Louis Farrakhan, Jeremiah Wright . . .

    If only blacks would listen to the words of Reverend Martin Luther King Jr.

    • #30

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