We didn’t predict this:
Whether erasing Sanger was an olive branch to Black staffers or part of a deeper self-investigation, there’s no question that the main winners here are abortion opponents. For decades, they’ve claimed that Sanger was a racist bent on Black genocide and that Planned Parenthood is carrying out that mission today. In 2016, Planned Parenthood released a historically accurate, fair, and complex statement refuting that absurd claim, but why would anyone pay attention to that now?…Katha Pollitt, “Canceling Margaret Sanger Only Helps Abortion Opponents” at The Nation (September 7/14 2020)
Actually, the 2016 statement was the same sort of claim as those made on behalf of Darwin. Both Sanger and Darwin were racists in the old-fashioned sense. That doesn’t mean that they opposed what they saw as the good of their inferiors, maybe forced on them. But no one says it does. It’s still old-fashioned racism.
Now it gets real. We are treated to a sympathetic look at eugenics:
Although she did not single out Black people, Sanger was, yes, a eugenicist. She thought people, especially poor people, often had too many kids to care for properly and that too many of those kids were born physically disabled (or in the language of the day, “feeble-minded”). She did not oppose forced sterilization.
In these views, she had a lot of company. Many intellectuals in the early 20th century—left, right, and center—went even further. That is, they traced social ills like crime and poverty to there being too many of the wrong sort of people, a calamity that modern society, through science and social control, could prevent. Because of the Nazis, we think of eugenics as based on racism and pseudoscientific notions of breeding a racial genetic elite, but it was more about ableism, based on the belief that poverty, crime, prostitution, and promiscuity were the result of inferior genes.Katha Pollitt, “Canceling Margaret Sanger Only Helps Abortion Opponents” at The Nation (September 7/14 2020)
Right. Thank you. The Witness for the Prosecution may step down. Unless Counsel for the Defense has any questions.
At least we are getting to understand progressives as many of them understand themselves.
See also: Planned Parenthood Disavowed Margaret Sanger — Finally (Barry Arrington)
Is Planned Parenthood showing signs of weakness? Carolyn Moynihan: Post-Margaret Sanger, “PPFA also has leadership issues, and staff in some clinics are fed up with bullying bosses and low wages. Indeed, one abortion activist blames Planned Parenthood for the fact that “the pro-life movement has us on our heels.”