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crimes against humanity: then and now

By Fr. Paul Mankowski, S.J. (articles ) | Apr 03, 2003

From a speech by the late Malcolm Muggeridge, given at the University of San Francisco in 1978:

If people are only considered to be economic entities whose value is measured by the quality and/or quantity of their productivity, then what conceivable justification is there for maintaining, at great expense and difficulty, mentally and physically handicapped people and elderly? I know, that as sure as I can possibly persuade you to believe: governments will find it impossible to resist the temptation ... to deliver themselves from this burden of looking after the sick and the handicapped by the simple expedient of killing them off. Now this, in fact, is what the Nazis did ... not always through slaughter camps, but by a perfectly coherent decree with perfectly clear conditions. In fact, delay in creating public pressure for euthanasia has been due to the fact that it was one of the war crimes cited at Nuremberg. So for the Guinness Book of Records you can submit this: That it takes just about 30 years in our humane society to transform a war crime into an act of compassion. That is exactly what happened.

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