Eugenics Moves to the Twenty-First
Century From the elimination of undesirables from the human
race; mass culling in the name of saving the earth; to altering the genetic
code of humanity with advanced technology; eugenics has moved into a new
Comment: This report is not meant to be a comprehensive history of
eugenics. The initial article that I was going to write was less than
half of what you will read here, but as I investigated this area I discovered
how ignorant I was as to how expansive this topic is. Initially researching
John D. Rockefeller, a Pandora's box of information opened up, inevitably
leading to the topic of this article. I hope that this information will
help you come to a greater understanding of this subject, and to warn
others of its grave dangers.
From the elimination of undesirables from the human
race; mass culling in the name of saving the earth; to altering the genetic
code of humanity with advanced technology: Eugenics has moved into a new
What is eugenics?
The word eugenics comes from the Greek words eus
(good or well) and genēs (born) meaning "well born".
The American Heritage dictionary of the English language describes eugenics
as, "The study of hereditary improvement of the human race by controlled
selective breeding." Sir Francis Galton was the man who coined the
term, and developed the first eugenic policies. Galton expressed distress
at the lack of emphasis on the betterment of the human race during his
time, comparing men and women of his day to "pariah dogs". In
wrote in an article titled "Hereditary Character and Talent,"
published in two parts in MacMillan's
"If a twentieth part of the cost and pains
were spent in measures for the improvement of the human race that is
spent on the improvement of the breed of horses and cattle, what a galaxy
of genius might we not create! We might introduce prophets and high
priests of civilization into the world, as surely as we can propagate
idiots by mating cretins. Men and women of the present day are,
to those we might hope to bring into existence, what the pariah dogs
of the streets of an Eastern town are to our own highly-bred varieties."
(Article continues below)
The history of eugenics in America is filled with
controversy and harrowing stories of forced sterilization throughout many
U.S. states. In 2002 Mark R. Warner, the
governor of Virginia issued an apology for the thousands of individuals
that the state had sterilized from 1924
to 1979. USA Today reported on the governors
"With the governor's statement Thursday, Virginia becomes the only
of the 30 states that conducted eugenics sterilizations to apologize.
There are believed to be more than 60,000 eugenics victims nationwide.
'Today, I offer the commonwealth's sincere apology
for Virginia's participation in eugenics,' Warner said.
'As I have previously noted, the eugenics movement
was a shameful effort in which state government never should have been
involved," he said. 'We must remember the commonwealth's past mistakes
in order to prevent them from recurring.'"
The aristocratic, wealthy elite of America played
a central role in the development of eugenics in America and abroad.
Two such elite families are the Rockefellers and
In 1902, Andrew Carnegie founded the Carnegie Institute
which among other things, funded the Eugenics Record Office in America.
The ERO (1910-1944) operated from Cold Spring Harbor in New York. Eugenics
policies, which led to the sterilization of thousands of Americans, were
developed in this office.
The Rockefellers, perhaps more so, were also heavily
involved with eugenics. Rockefeller influence in American eugenics can
be traced to the beginnings of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratories. John D.
Rockefeller, along with Averell Harriman gave $11 million to create the
facility in the early 1900's. Rockefeller influence also spread overseas
to Germany, where the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Psychiatry, and the
Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Eugenics, Anthropology and Human Heredity
resided. Much of the money used to run these facilities
came from Rockefeller. These weren't
just average scientific institutes; the Kaiser Wilhelm Institutes would
center for Nazi eugenics programs.
As documented by Gary Allen in "The Rockefeller
File" the Rockefellers continue to give money to eugenics and
population control related organizations,
"In 1970, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund
gave $500,000 to the Population Council. The Rockefeller Foundation
gave ecology grants of $10,000 to the New School for Social Research,
and $10,000 to the Population Reference Bureau."
In 1973, the Rockefeller Foundation again gave
$500,000 to to the Population Council and $25,000 to the Population Crisis
Committee, while the Rockefeller Brothers Fund gave $250,000 to the Population
Council, and $250,000 to the Population Institute.
The Population Council was founded by John D. Rockefeller
the 3rd in 1952. The first president of the Council, Frederick Osborn,
was appointed by Rockefeller. Osborn was the leader of the American Eugenics
Society, and member of the Galton Society, founded in 1918.
Osborn stated in the 1956 edition of "The
Eugenics Review" that,
"...the reasons advanced must be generally
acceptable reasons. Let's stop telling anyone that they have a genetically
inferior genetic quality, for they will never agree. Let's base our
proposals on the desirability of having children born in homes where
they will get affectionate and responsible care, and perhaps our proposals
will be accepted. It seems to me that if it is to progress as it should,
eugenics must follow new policies and state its case anew, and that
from this rebirth we may, even in our own lifetime, see it moving at
last towards the high goals which Galton set for it."
Killing to save the earth
Since the early days of eugenics, a new "brand"
of this science has emerged in modern times. The environmental branch
of eugenics believes that, due to overpopulation, measures must be taken
to either impede population growth through various eugenic policies, or
take drastic measures to eliminate living human beings from the earth.
Unlike those who advocate eugenics to to strictly rid humanity of "undesirables,"
some advocate the culling of humanity in general in order to save planet
Many globalist initiatives surround environmental
issues, one of which has been population control and reduction.
"Eugenics views itself as the fourth leg
of the chair of civilization, the other three being a) a thrifty expenditure
of natural resources, b) mitigation of environmental pollution, and
c) maintenance of a human population not exceeding the planet’s
carrying capacity. Eugenics, which can be thought of as human ecology,
is thus part and parcel of the environmental movement."
order to stabilize world population, we must eliminate 350,000
people per day. It is a horrible thing to say, but it's just as
bad not to say it." - Jacques Cousteau
"The world has a cancer, and that
cancer is man." - Merton Lambert, former spokesman for the
"...The first task is population control
at home. How do we go about it? Many of my colleagues feel that
some sort of compulsory birth regulation would be necessary to
achieve such control. One plan often mentioned involves the addition
of temporary sterilants to water supplies or staple food. Doses
of the antidote would be carefully rationed by the government
to produce the desired population size." - Paul Ehrlich,
The Population Bomb, p.130-131
"If I were reincarnated I would wish
to be returned to earth as a killer virus to lower human population
levels." - Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh, leader
of the World Wildlife Fund - quoted in "Are You Ready For
Our New Age Future?," Insiders Report, American Policy
Center, December '95
"A total population of 250-300 million
people, a 95% decline from present levels, would be ideal."
- Ted Turner - CNN founder and UN supporter - quoted in the McAlvany
Intelligence Advisor, June '96
though it is quite true that any radical eugenic policy will be
for many years politically and psychologically impossible, it
will be important for UNESCO to see that the eugenic problem is
examined with the greatest care, and that the public mind is informed
of the issues at stake so that much that now is unthinkable may
at least become thinkable." - Sir Julian Huxley, first director
general of UNESCO (1946-1948)
In 2004 the publication World Watch published an
article titled, "Global
Population Reduction: Confronting the Inevitable,"
by Ken Smail, a professor in the Anthropology department of Kenyon College
in Ohio. In this article, Smail proposes that the earth's carrying capacity
will reach, or has reached already, its limit. In what Smail calls a modern
day "Malthusian dilemma", he cites measures to merely slow population
growth as being inefficient, stating that,
"Looking past the near-term concerns that
have plagued population policy at the political level, it is increasingly
apparent that the long-term sustainability of civilization will require
not just a leveling-off of human numbers as projected over the coming
half-century, but a colossal reduction in both population and
consumption." [emphasis added]
Smail says that a large scale global population
reduction is inevitable, but that there are two possible ways for this
"That there will be a large-scale reduction
in global human numbers over the next two or three centuries
appears to be inevitable. The primary issue seems to be whether this
process will be under conscious human control and (hopefully) relatively
benign, or whether it will turn out to be unpredictably chaotic and
The new eugenics
"Eugenic goals are most likely to be attained
under another name than eugenics." - Frederick Osborn
Since the founding of eugenics, the movement has
changed, but it has retained its core goals over the years. Thomas H.
Campbell of the University of California believes that the eugenics model
of Galton is outdated and impractical, as do many other scientists. Instead
of relying on breeding "better humans," without the intervention
of technology, many scientists believe that technological means should
be employed to further our "evolution." With the rise of advanced
scientific technologies, the ability to alter the genetic code of living
organisms, and the augmentation of human bodies has become a reality.
Some individuals who are involved with the modern eugenics movement see
the rise of these capabilities as an opportunity to create or alter human
beings to acquire the most "desirable traits" and rid humanity
of traits deemed "undesirable".
Is there a link between eugenics and the Human
Genome Project? If so, what does this mean for future generations?
During the 34 years (1910-1944) the Eugenics Records
Office was active, it collected information on specific human traits
in what was called The Trait Book. Also collected was information
on "Pedigree" families and their specific traits. Today, the
Human Genome project is in effect carrying on what the Eugenics Records
Office could only dream of.
James Watson, who began the initial
research for the Human Genome Project, directed the operation from 1988-1992.
Watson then served as director at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory and
would eventually become president of the Laboratory in 1994. Watson's
beliefs about the betterment of mankind mirror those of past eugenics
Watson is quoted as saying at a 1998 UCLA conference
"I mean, sure, we have great respect for
the human species .... But evolution can be just damn cruel, and to
say that we've got a perfect genome and there's some sanctity to it,
I'd just like to know where that idea comes from. It's utter silliness.
And the other thing, because no one really has the guts to say it, I
mean, if we could make better human beings by knowing how to add genes,
why shouldn't we do it?"
Craig Venter caused many to question his ethics
when he moved to found Celera Genomics in 1998, carrying the study of
the human genome into the private sector, using the "shotgun strategy"
to sequence the human genome at a faster clip than the public project.
In a press release dated March 1, 2001,
Celera Genomics announced that it signed a "multi-year agreement"
with AMDeC LLC to "allow member institutions to access Celera's database
information [Human Genome data] through its Celera Discovery System."
Some of those member institutions included Rockefeller University, and
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. Interestingly, Rockefeller University was
founded by John D. Rockefeller in 1901 with a dedication to biomedical
research. Today, David Rockefeller, grandson to John D. Rockefeller Jr.,
is the Chairman of the Rockefeller University Council.
Venter further maddened fellow scientists when he moved to patent human genes.
Serious ethical discussions took place after the first attempts to patent
human genes, but ultimately the decision stood to allow patenting. The
United States Patent and Trademark Office issued guidelines on patenting.
The American Medical Association
describes the guidelines,
"The rules are intended to help end a bitter
debate on gene patenting. These regulations have put to rest any question
about whether genes can be patented at all -- making it clear that companies
may indeed patent both whole genes as well as pieces of genes..."
The guidelines allow patenting when the those applying
for a patent on a gene show a "utility" for the gene. The AMA
goes on to state that arguments were heard opposing the decision based
on the fact that these genes were not created by anyone, and thus could
not be patented. The AMA describes how the Patent office rejected these
"The PTO firmly rejected this notion based
upon the fact that a gene may be removed from a person, then a clone
of that gene may be made in a machine, which is then not a part of nature,
but a product of the lab."
The apex of a futuristic eugenics program comes
with the advent of designer babies, embryos that are genetically enhanced
through various methods. The knowledge gathered through the study of the
human genome will, according to some, lead to the ability to create such
In 2000, the BBC aired a documentary called "Who's
Afraid of Designer Babies?" Featured in this clip
is Lee M. Silver, professor at Princeton University and former investigator
for Cold Spring Harbor (1980-1984).
The future is now: Genetically altered babies
There is still doubt among scholars and scientists
that the Human Genome Project will lead to a new eugenics program, such
as designer babies. They cite limitations on current technology and the
need for further research as reasons for this position. However, unknown
to many, genetically altered babies have already been born. The implications
of this development are immense, but it has received little attention.
Because these babies were "created" in the private sector and
the lab did not receive government funding, there were no governmental
restrictions on what could be done. As
Wired magazine reported in 2001,
"Researchers have genetically-altered humans
for the first time, but experts question the moral implications of tinkering
with the unborn.
The scientists weren't looking to
create genetically-enhanced Michael Jordans or Anna Kournikovas.
Rather, they repaired the defective eggs of prospective
mothers by injecting them with DNA from the eggs of healthy
But regardless of the scientists'
intentions, they've created the first human offspring with
changes to their "germline," or the genes they'll
pass on to future generations. In this case, the babies'
genes contain DNA from two women instead of just one.
The researchers performed the fertilizations
in 1997 and 1998. In March, they published data on the results
of DNA fingerprint tests on two of the children, each one
year old, confirming that they contain a small quantity
of additional genes not inherited from either parent.
Most scientists consider altering
the germline unethical, since no one knows what the long-term
effects might be. The researchers, however, are confident
the technique is safe."
What will the future look like?
What will the future hold in a world in which eugenics,
utilizing advanced technology, has become a reality?
Lee Silver describes
in his book "Cloning and Beyond in a Brave New World",
a future scenario in which humanity splits into two distinct classes,
the "GenRich" and the "GenPoor."
"The GenRich--who account for 10 percent
of the American population--all carry synthetic genes. Genes that were
created in the laboratory....The GenRich are a modern-day hereditary
class of genetic aristocrats....All aspects of the economy, the media,
the entertainment industry, and the knowledge industry are controlled
by members of the GenRich class."
Those who are not as fortunate to have access to
genetic modification, called "Naturals" by Silver, will "...work
as low-paid service providers or as laborers."
Bertrand Russel says in "The Impact of
Science on Society" (1953) on pages 49-50 that,
"Gradually, by selective breeding, the congenital
differences between rulers and ruled will increase until they become
almost different species. A revolt of the plebs would become as unthinkable
as an organized insurrection of sheep against the practice of eating
Hollywood has apparently been keeping up to date
on genetic technologies, adding their own theatrical twist. The movie
"Gattaca", released in 1997, portrays a despotic future world
in which designer babies are born every day, and the perfection of genes
has become the center of society.
Watch the Gattaca trailer:
Thomas H. Campbell of the University
of California believes that humanity is destined to gain access to methods
of "autoevolution." Writing in his paper, "The
Moral Imperative of Our Future Evolution", Campbell
describes future technologies and their eugenic implications. Campbell
praises eugenics policies, and cites the Human Genome Project as a positive
development in the identification of "defective" genes.
"We have catalogued defective genes behind
a variety of dreadful neurological and metabolic disorders as parts
of programs to eliminate them eugenically. Our systematic mapping of
the human genome will identify many others. Everyone applauds the goal
of purging these defects in our heredity - notwithstanding quibbles
over the ethics of the techniques of amniocentesis, abortion and even
contraception. I emphatically embrace this eugenic program even though
its evolutionary impact is insignificant. Most defective genes are rare,
and their total elimination does little for evolution except squeeze
the range of variation of humans."
"We probably will begin our interventions
into brain and embryonic development with drugs and hormones and subsequently
engineer the desirable intrusions into the genome. Then, after a further
generation of accumulating biological information about individual gene
function, developmental pathways, and the neural substrate of brain
function, evolutionists probably will write novel genes for these traits
from scratch using a DNA synthesizer."
"Of course, the methods for evolving our
genetics extend beyond biotechnology. Ultra-sophisticated parallel processing
computers and software programs will predictively model how particular
gene configurations translate into phenotype, and how particular phenotypic
traits can be engineered into developmental pathways. As a start, new
computer technology is being developed today as an integral part of
the human genome project."
Campbell, like others, says that future genetic
technologies will be extremely expensive, leaving the average person out
of the loop. Campbell expresses his approval of this expense due to the
fact that only the "most successful generative lines" will have
access to these technologies.
"The costs will be enormous, far beyond
what most people could afford. This has kept our democratic society
from appreciating that these possibilities will be used and will be
important. However, their feasibility cannot be judged from what the
average person will be willing to pay to procreate. What matters are
the resources that the most successful generative lines will be able
to apply to their goals. A million dollars per conception seems a great
underestimate to me for the beings who hold evolution's frontier."
The legacy of Galton, John D., and Carnegie lives
on. Though terms have changed, the names of organizations altered, the
methods of propagandizing the public reformed; the ideology behind eugenics
is being carried into the twenty-first century, and a new eugenics is
creeping into our society. Will humanity as we know it today become a
fossil as some have proposed? Public awareness is the key. The information
contained in this report needs to be spread far and wide, for the future
of humanity as we know it depends on it.