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The etymology of the term eugenics refers to "Good birth" . It's about the discipline which seeks to apply the biological laws of the heritage for perfect the human species . Eugenics involves an intervention in hereditary traits to help the birth of healthier and more intelligent people.

Proponents of eugenics say that this practice relieves suffering (by preventing people with malformations or serious births diseases , for example) and allows the society Save resources Their detractors, on the other hand, consider that eugenics is contrary to ethics and they believe that the manipulation of these biological laws is immoral.

Artificial selection, prenatal diagnosis, genetic engineering and birth control are mechanisms of eugenics. Along the history This practice has been used as a justification to practice discrimination, force the sterilization of social groups and even exterminate the races or ethnicities considered inferior.

Eugenics and xenophobia

The eugenics knew how to enjoy social prestige and was supported by personalities such as Winston churchill and Alexander Graham Bell . However, from its link with the racial policies promoted by the Nazi regime in Germany , this discipline began to be condemned.

The Nazis included in their rhetoric the concept of “Unworthy life of being lived” to boost eugenics in the social groups they considered "Diverted" (physically and mentally disabled, homosexuals) and "Conflicting" (Jews, gypsies, communists). The argument led German scientists to perform genetic experiments With humans.

However, the Germans were not the only ones to support eugenics, in countries like Sweden and the United States, they were also carried out eugenics programs which were intended to propose a uniform people, with defined features and "thoroughbred". For this purpose sterilization programs were carried out to ensure the reproduction of those individuals who had the expected physical and intellectual endowment. Many victims suffered these measures, mostly they were alcoholics, epileptics, blind or deaf or women considered promiscuous or criminal. They labeled them as mentally weak and claimed that it was the best way to secure the future of societies. They also proposed that sterilization was the best solution to poverty.

In the United States there was a case that moved the entire town. In 1924 Carrie Buck, an orphan who lived in an adoption house, was raped by her adoptive parents' nephew; Soon she knew she was pregnant. I was 17 years old and was a girl like any other; her adoptive parents entered her in a hospital for epileptics and the mentally ill to prevent his situation from taunting the family name. Carrie was sentenced to sterilization; but it did not yield easily. He appealed to the Supreme Court of Justice in which he faced the then director of that hospital. It lost and in 1927 it was sterilized. One of the jury's arguments was "Three generations of morons are enough" (They tried to express that the Buck gene was deficient).

This is only one of the thousands of stories that exist around eugenics. It's known that The main reason that led governments to bet on such programs was racism, sexism and xenophobia; that is, the consideration of the superiority of one race over another. Simply turn to statistics to check.

In Scandinavia about 63,000 people were sterilized between 1934 and 1975; of which the 90% were women which were considered "inept" to reproduce. Similarly in the United States people forcibly sterilized between 1907 and 1960 were mostly African American, so it can be clearly read that the execution of these programs was linked to racist issues.

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