We all know about segregation in our recent history. We know how state governments across the nation passed laws, rules and regulations treating people differently, these laws not only included blacks, but Asians, Latinos and other ethnic groups as well, not only in the community, but before the court systems. Note even our United States Supreme Court ratified the use of segregation in the 1896 case of Plessy v. Ferguson, 163 U.S. 537 where the Supreme Court sustained the constitutionality of “Separate but equal”. It took us fifty years to overturn the Jim Crow laws, much to our shame.
Likewise, we fell into the same type of segregation right after the attack on Pearl Harbor when people of Japanese descent were rounded up and placed in internment camps. Again these actions were upheld by the United States Supreme Court Korematsu v. United States. Over 40 years later again much to our shame, the courts found that the government had intentionally withheld reports and other critical evidence as well as having lied about facts, at trials all the way up to the Supreme Court, which proved that there was no military necessity for the exclusion and internment of Japanese Americans. In the words of the Department of Justice officials writing during the war, the justifications were based on “willful historical inaccuracies and intentional falsehoods.”
Then after the war came to an end we started the McCarthy Era where people had laws passed against them if they were members of disfavored political groups. Supposedly our Constitution will not abide this type of treatment of American citizens, but it has, and it’s been going on since the beginning of the 20th century. Americans have had their problems with segregation and discrimination against disliked groups and in every case it has led to national shame. After all, our country was based on individual freedoms in that all people must be on equal footing, and no person or group should be discriminated against, although we say because of race, religion etc., It boils down to no individual or group should be discriminated against or have their constitutional liberties infringed upon for any reason. To put it simply, the loss of any Constitutional freedom that is granted to others is a punishment.
Americans believe they would never allow what happened in Nazi Germany in the 1930s and 1940s to happen here in the United States to people where the German government justified, persecuting and denying rights to groups of people such as the homosexual and bisexual individuals, the Romani (more commonly known in English by the exonym “Gypsies”), Sinti, Soviet prisoners of war, Polish and Soviet civilians, people with disabilities, Jehovah’s Witnesses and other political and religious opponents, as well as the Jews. This occurred regardless of whether they were of German or non-German ethnic origins and Germany then created institutions where these people had experimental drugs and surgeries used on them and many were sterilized even before the concentration camps.
Eugenic laws and practices implemented in the first decades of the twentieth century influenced the much larger National Socialist compulsory sterilization program, which between 1934 and 1945 led to approximately 350,000 compulsory sterilizations and was a stepping stone to the Holocaust. Germany was also using euthanasia to kill many people that they considered unfit to live in society.
Where did the ideas that one group was inferior to other groups in society and that they should be banished or purged from that society come from? Interestingly in Hitler’s book Mein Kampf he talks about how Americans, through the use of eugenics, were using laws against disfavored people. This was where his idea of ethnic cleansing had come from. In America there was a movement that was referred to as the “war on the weak” (1) ( http://youtu.be/IaH0Ws8RtSc) where disfavored groups were rounded up, many of them children, taken to institutions and suffered through lobotomies, electroshock therapy and sterilization as well as experimental surgeries and the use of experimental drugs. There was even a movement within America’s legislative bodies to have some of these groups of people euthanized as well. All though euthanization supposedly never happened in this country, you have to wonder if many of these individuals who supposedly died from the sterilization procedures weren’t actually murdered.
As early as 1914 there were 44 major institutions across this country, colleges and universities, whose policies were supported by the United States government set about to create a “war against the weak” (1). The government did this through codification, ostracism and annihilation of those who were considered unfit, and they did this through forced sterilization. In just over 30 years, the United States sterilized well over 100,000 individuals. They chose individuals based on race, IQ, cultural heritage, based on skull shape and/or “proclivity towards criminality activity” . This process many times involved policemen going into people’s homes, kidnapping children, and forcibly sterilizing them – many died during these sterilizations.
The Western State Hospital in Virginia was notable in its “accomplishments” in lowering population numbers, though other facilities in Virginia and across the country took action to sterilize as well. County welfare director Karen Bolton wrote with pride, “The children were legally committed by the court for being feeble-minded, and there was a waiting list from here to Lynchburg.” She added, “If you’ve seen as much suffering and depravity as I have, you can only hope and pray no one else goes through something like that. We had to stop it at the root.”
How can we as Americans have allowed this to happen? We were fed false and misleading information by the pseudo-scientists of the day, and it was accepted by the legislative bodies. In fact, compulsory sterilization laws adopted by over 30 states were in place allowing for the institutionalizing and sterilization of people they considered to be unfit as members of society. Some of the things that would get you sterilized in America included epilepsy, low intelligence, manic-depression, low IQ, alcoholism and criminality.
The natural progression of things when Constitutional values are thrown out the window is that in legislative action, each new group of legislators attempts to add new laws and new regulations to those existing laws without ever considering if, in fact, the laws themselves are based on fact. Legislators do this to prove that they are representing the people even as they strip away our Constitutional protections. This was true with the eugenics movement; even when a case was taken to the Courts, our U.S. Supreme Court upheld this practice in Buck v Bell, with Chief Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, proclaiming that the need for these eugenics in order to save society: “It is better for all the world, if instead of wanting to execute degenerate offspring for crime or let them starve for their imbecility, society can prevent those who are manifestly unfit from continuing their kind. The principle that sustains compulsory vaccination is broad enough to cover cutting the Fallopian tubes. Three generations of imbeciles is enough.”
And now we come to the latest disfavored group who has had laws, rules and regulations passed against the people in it in violation of our Constitutional standards and supported in many cases by a legal justice system that is more interested in politics than defending our Constitutional rights. These laws have been passed without any regard to whether or not they are backed by any supporting evidence other than fear and mythology, or with any consideration to the damage they are inflicting our Constitutionally protected individual rights. The elite of Nazi Germany would be proud of the politicians of this day; right now there are politicians out there that are suggesting sterilization for people in this group. Laws have been passed denying people in this group places to live, to work, to recreate, to be educated, to have families and to participate in the education of their children. Does this sound like the Nuremberg laws of prewar Germany? Yes, it does. You say this can’t happen in the United States in the 21st century. Our Constitution won’t allow it; it’s there to protect every individual equally.
The policymaker’s rules and regulations against this group of people go far beyond just affecting that specific disfavored group. They also have a severe negative impacts physically, emotionally and financially of friends and family members of this disfavored group including children. Literally hundreds of thousands of children have suffered severe harm because of these laws rules and regulations and again, our Supreme Court in Smith versus Doe 538 U.S. 84 has upheld the justification for the Registry and community notification. Again, this Court decision was based on false and in accurate information, and on pseudo-science presented by the government officials.
In research done on eugenics by the pseudo-scientists we now know that the data collection methods were poorly conceived, and many times information that did not correlate with the hypotheses of the researchers was just simply left out. Not to mention that politicians as well as some researchers creatively used statistics to falsely exaggerate their claims. This is the same problem psychiatrists, psychologists and other pseudo-scientists today have in doing research on people with sex offenses. They allow their personal beliefs to color the data that is collected about the possibility of people with prior crimes reoffending. They go into the research mode with pre-determined concepts of what a person involved in a sex crime is like, and their possibility to reoffend. There are also two other issues. First, they have a fiduciary interest in that they see the possibility of making large amounts of money by forcing people into treatment programs that they will control. Second, they have a need to justify treatment programs, already being used, with their makeup similar to Clockwork Orange.
If the truth were to come out about the low re-offense rates and the fact that most people do not need treatment, then the way that therapist had been treating people in institutions for decades with ammonium nitrate aversion therapy, electroshock therapy, aggressive confrontational therapy, and even lobotomies, things that were continued to be used even after the court system had said that they were unconstitutional (2)(3)) would be called into question, and they would become liable for all the atrocities that providers had been using in the past. So they used the same methods that the pseudo-sciences of the eugenics movement used, which was to make their studies using specific groups of people, most who had been in long-term treatment, and they ask leading questions in such a way that they stack the deck to give the results they are looking for. That way they could show the politicians higher numbers of reoffending than were realistic and of course, the politicians took those numbers and blew them further out of proportion so that they could pass laws that they knew or should have known were unconstitutional.
And what of the Constitutionality of forcing people to be in treatment programs. Whether they are in prison or on parole and probation, in the past courts have addressed these issues and found that forcing people into treatment programs that they do not want to to participate in is unconstitutional (4)-(11)
One out of every four people in the United States has a criminal conviction and 8% of the population of the United States has a felony conviction. Doesn’t sound like much until you take into consideration that out of 321 million people in the United States in 2012, 80 million people have a criminal conviction. When you consider family members affected by the segregating consequences of these laws, rules and regulations, that means there are somewhere between 116 million and 250 million people who are affected by someone’s prior conviction. Ask anybody who has had a felony conviction or ask a family member of a person who has had a felony conviction – they can tell you that the label has made it hard for returning citizens to get restarted in society. Also that the rules and regulations affecting their lives, even after they are off of parole and probation, can severely restrict their lives to the point where they cannot get meaningful jobs and become reintegrated effectively into society. This naturally has the affect of creating many hardships for friends and families as well.
Most notably are the people that are involved in sex crimes – even though their reconviction in a new similar type crime is well less than 1%. These people are having their constitutional rights severely limited by illegal legislation. Right now, including friends and family, one out of every hundred people in this country are negatively affected by the sex offender rules and regulations. You only have to look at how the law’s rules and regulations for sex offenders have escalated over the last fifteen years to get an idea of what is going to happen to all other criminal classes. If you don’t stand up for the rights of this disfavored group, then in the near future you will find that your rights will disappear too. You might even find yourself moved to a relocation and re-education facility, where you will be separated from your family and friends, because it is for the greater good of the country. If you think that is a farfetched idea, just read some of the comments in online news articles about sex offenses.
In recent years, new studies have come out showing that there have never been high re-offense rates and that the laws that have been passed were based on false information. The same as the eugenics movement. One interesting fact is that our sex offender laws are now migrating to other countries – countries that do not have the same ethnic background or religious views as ours. Our laws will be used to justify a new wave of restrictions on people’s liberties across the world, possibly resulting in more genocide in other countries. That could easily escalate into another world war. Perhaps it is time for legislative bodies to stand up and acknowledge that the laws that they have created were based on false and inaccurate information provided to them, that they have no basis in fact, that they have stripped away Constitutional rights and thereby should be entirely done away with.
1. War Against the Weak. Eugenics and America’s Campaign to Create a Master Race. Edwin Black http://www.waragainsttheweak.com/index.php?page=50128
2. KNECHT V. GILLMAN 488 F2d 1136 any “” aversive stimali” constitutes cruel and unusual punishment “ “Behavior modification by aversive stimali is “highly questionable technique” and that only a 20%to 50% success is claimed That its use is really punishment worse than a controlled beatings.
3. GREEN V. BARON 662 F Supp 1378 When a mental patient is intentionally subjected to harsh conditions in order to deter him from maintaining a course of conduct the fact that it is done in the name of Psychiatric treatment dose not keep it from being intentional punishment.
4. CANTERINO V. WILSON 546 F Supp 174 Person convicted of crimes deserve to be punished but this dose not give the state license to make prisoners objects of unguided behavior control experiments
5. US Supreme court in Vitck vs Jones 100 S.Ct 125, ‘While a conviction and sentence extinguish an individual’s right to freedom from confinement for the term of the sentence, they do not authorize the state to classify him as mentally ill and subject him to involuntary psychiatric treatment without affording additional due process protections’.
6. Ohlinger vs Watson 652 F2d 775, it was brought out that people “have a constitutional right to such individual treatment as will give each of them a realistic opportunity to be cured or to improve his mental condition” and “rehabilitative rational is not only desirable, but it is constitutionally required” plus “adequate and effective treatment is constitutionally required”.
7. Stanley v. Georgia, 89 S. Ct. 1243, 1248 ” Our whole constitutional heritage rebels at the thought of giving government power to control men’s minds”
8. “Mere negative attitudes, or fear of a given group, will not suffice as legitimate governmental purpose for legislation” and ” A bare desire to harm a politically unpopular group are not legitimate State interests”. City of Cleburne Tx. v. Cleburne Living Center 105 S.Ct. 3249.
9. ”State v. Woolridge 790 p2d 1192 /2/3/ Conclusions Based on Conjecture as to whether person pose danger to others are insufficient to justify involuntary confinement. Issue of dangerousness must be determined at time of hearing.
10. State v. Nance 735 P2d 1271 Conclusions based on conjecture about dangerousness are insufficient.
11. Mater of Lucas 571 P2d571 Determination whether a person is danger2ous beyond a reasonable doubt must focus on his or her condition aj. time of the. . . hearing State v. Daulton 566 P2d 555 State v. Alexander 554 P2d 524 State v. G 552 P2d5 7 4