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"Human Sterilization," Human Betterment Foundation (4)

"Human Sterilization," Human Betterment Foundation (4)
"Human Sterilization," Human Betterment Foundation (4)
1757. [left side] The particular form of statute needed in any state must depend upon the organic laws and institutions of that state, and upon the degree of advancement of public opinion. Here are two steps, however, that each state must take in the near future, if it is to keep abreast of the progress of science in the protection of its own citizenship. 1. Provide for the sterilization, compulsory if necessary, (though this provision will rarely be required), of those patients legally committed to state institutions as insane or feebleminded who, if not sterilized before release, would probably have defective children. The procedure should be outlined in detail in the statute and the patient's rights to a hearing in court specifically safeguarded. This law should also apply to inmates of such institutions as poor farms, prisons, and reformatories, who are found to be insane, feebleminded, or to have other serious hereditary defects. In the administration of such a law there will always be found borderline and doubtful cases. In such cases sterilization should never be performed except with consent. 2. Where the citizens of a state are sufficiently familiar with the subject to support a further measure, a separate law should be adopted authorizing city, county, and state hospitals supported at public expense to accept voluntary patients in legitimate cases for eugenic sterilization, just as they now do when the sterilization is required merely to save the patient's life, as it often is in women whose heart, lungs, or kidneys make further maternity dangerous. Such a measure would permit those who need sterilization, but who cannot afford to pay for the operation, to get it at public expense without endangering any public or private interest. The Human Betterment Foundation will gladly aid those interested in legislation, to get full information on this subject. It has published all the facts available, both historical and experimental, on eugenic sterilization, regardless of whether favorable or unfavorable to any individual's claims or expectations. It is concerned with education, not with propaganda. It is not advocating any particular law for any particular state, but urging citizens everywhere to inform themselves, and make up their own minds, as to the issues involved; to adopt sound and workable laws and to amend those that are out of date or badly drawn. 8 [right side] Sterilization for Human Betterment The foregoing are some of the principal facts and conclusions reached in a study of the workings of sterilization laws, particularly in California, and set forth in the technical papers referred to. These findings have been digested and published in more accessible form in a book of 202 pages entitled STERILIZATION FOR HUMAN BETTERMENT by E. S. Gosney and Paul Popenoe. This book can be obtained for $2.00 from The Human Betterment Foundation of Pasadena, from any book store, or direct from the publishers, The Macmillan Company, New York City. (German and Japanese translations have also been published in Berlin and Tokyo respectively.) In the first part, the results of sterilization in California and elsewhere are set forth in detail with full citations to the original sources, and in the second part such conclusions are drawn from these facts as seem warranted. H. G. Wells and Julian S. Huxley in their recent work [italics]The Science of Life[end italics], after describing sterilization in California say: "It would be difficult to find fault with the results". . . "The reader will find an up-to-date account in Gosney and Popenoe's [italics]Sterilization for Human Betterment."[end italics] [extract]"A very fair and uncolored account of the situation . . .well worth reading." - American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology. "An excellent summary of the whole problem . . .conservative but important." - New England Journal of Medicine. "It describes the results of a thoroughgoing social experiment in a clear and concise manner and applies keen logic to the discussion." - Psychiatric Quarterly. "An excellent work, valuable alike to the physician, the jurist, and the legislator." - La Epoca (Buenos Aires.) 9 [end]
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