Saturday, October 14, 2006

North Korea Kills Disabled Infants

I knew it! According to the Sunday Times (London), North Korea kills disabled infants and has a virulent eugenics policy. "The latest description of Kim Jong-il's policy of state eugenics came from a North Korean doctor," A story in the Times states, "Ri Kwang-chol, who escaped last year and told a forum in Seoul that babies with deformities were killed soon after birth. 'There are no people with physical defects in North Korea,' Ri said. Such babies were put to death by medical staff and buried quickly, he claimed. He denied ever committing the act himself."

Gruesome details in the story depict the most vicious murders of helpless babies. It is an awful read.

The world once promised, "Never again!" But, it didn't really mean it. It would rather be comfortable than do the right thing. For shame!

22 Comments:

At October 14, 2006 , Blogger GrannyGrump said...

You know the most appalling part? Most westerners -- especially those on the Left who supposedly champion the rights of the underdog -- won't care. "A few less slant-eyed cripples in the world," is how they're going to see it.

Only the prolifers and a few disability rights activists will care. And nobody listens to us anyway.

 
At October 14, 2006 , Blogger Wesley J. Smith said...

Well, I don't see liberals as being that crass. They are more likely not to believe it because they seem to have difficulty truly looking into the face of evil.

I think more people care than you may think. At least I hope it is true. The fact that the London Times ran the story is encouraging. Let's hope some American media pick it up.

Thanks for tuning and and for contributing to Secondhand Smoke.

 
At October 14, 2006 , Blogger GrannyGrump said...

They'd never say it out loud, but it's the left that embraces abortion, infanticide, and euthanasia. Why would they be disturbed that North Korea practices something they consider compassionate and enlightened when whitebread parents choose to do it?

And remember, these kids aren't white and prosperous, so they're just part of the "population problem."

So reducing overpopulation, plus "relieving" the disabled kids of their "burdensome lives" in one fell swoop -- that's gonna be admirable if they're gonna pass any judgment on it at all.

 
At October 15, 2006 , Blogger acne treatment said...

They may never know that they may have killed a genius with a disability...is there a God for the underdog? With all these terrible news, quit smoking may be harder than it seems.

 
At October 15, 2006 , Blogger Gert said...

Thanks for pointing out this story, which desperately needs to be corroborated, even though the preliminary evidence is compelling.

You said: "Well, I don't see liberals as being that crass. They are more likely not to believe it because they seem to have difficulty truly looking into the face of evil."

That is simply crackpot nonsense. Because you are on the right you can see evil more easily, is that right? No, it isn't. To see evil clearly, clear and unequivocal evidence of it has to be found. Or do you not feel due diligence in legal matters is required because you have no difficulty "truly looking into the face of evil"? What are you, some kind of oracle?

 
At October 15, 2006 , Blogger Susan said...

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

 
At October 15, 2006 , Blogger Susan said...

I think we do need to put the qualifier "if it is true" in front of this story. We don't know if it truly is.

However, bioethics issues are NOT "left-right" issues, and I am sick and tired of people who try to paint liberals as "evil" or "unable to see" evil.

That's simply not true. There are plenty of "conservatives," particularly those of a libertarian bent, who think "right to die" is a civil rights issue, just as there are many, many of us who are liberals who are appalled by the bioethicists for their crass disregard for the rights of the disabled.

Let's quit this "left-right" labeling because it's false when it comes to bioethics.

 
At October 15, 2006 , Blogger Raskolnikov said...

You focused on the disabled babies to the exclusion of the babies suspected of Chinese parentage. Is that because of the parameters you have outlined for yourself of the kind of subject matter you will specifically focus on in this blog?

 
At October 15, 2006 , Blogger Wesley J. Smith said...

Gert. Sorry, but my experience tells me that most contemporary self-described liberals tend to be myopic on these issues, being too steeped in nonjudgmentalism to take a firm stand. It didn't used to be this way, but that is how I see it. This isn't universal, of course. My friend Nat Hentoff is absolutely righteous on these issues, as just one example.

 
At October 15, 2006 , Blogger Wesley J. Smith said...

R: I focused on the disability angle because of its clear connection to eugenics. But I should have mentioned the racist angle, as well. Thanks for pointing that out.

 
At October 15, 2006 , Blogger marc said...

This is not the place to go into the Right/Left issue but... so I won't. The first thing that came to my mind when I read that Times article the other night was, 'well, there is no proof here that will get this into the MSM in the U.S.'.

 
At October 16, 2006 , Blogger Royale said...

Interesting discussion here.

However, I wonder if it is all for naught. If we can't control North Koreas nuclear or missibe testing, how are we going to control their euthanasia program? Yes, it's bad and terrible, but so?

 
At October 16, 2006 , Blogger Wesley J. Smith said...

Well, let's just give up Royale. There is nothing we can ever do.

 
At October 16, 2006 , Blogger Royale said...

Well, with North Korea and China, what can we do? By our standards, they are cesspool of human rights abuses.

We can complain, but at some level, it's all academic until their governments become more moderate and responsive to the international community. That's the lynchpin of all this, including your pieces on forced organ donation of executed religious minorities.

 
At October 16, 2006 , Blogger Bernhardt Varenius said...

"With all these terrible news, quit smoking may be harder than it seems."

Why yes, Acne Treatment, there's great insight in your Engrish comment spam! I *do* find it harder to quit smoking when there's lots of bad news! :-)

 
At October 16, 2006 , Blogger Bernhardt Varenius said...

Gert: "That is simply crackpot nonsense. Because you are on the right you can see evil more easily, is that right? No, it isn't."

I assume Wesley has in mind the tendency of the far Left to overlook wrongdoing on the part of its favorite groups and regimes (e.g. the "radical chic" effect, the reluctance to tally the wrongdoing of Communist states in the same manner as fascist ones, etc.) which *is* a justifiable criticism. You are basically right, however, in that this isn't a fair claim to make against ordinary, mainstream liberals.

 
At October 16, 2006 , Blogger Bernhardt Varenius said...

Susan: "There are plenty of "conservatives," particularly those of a libertarian bent, who think "right to die" is a civil rights issue, just as there are many, many of us who are liberals who are appalled by the bioethicists for their crass disregard for the rights of the disabled."

Excellent point, Susan. The problem, however, is that the politicians and groups who are most visibly going to bat for euthanasia are liberal ones. It's no surprise that the common perception is that it's a "liberal issue". I don't see how that's going to change anytime soon, either. In the meantime, just keep making yourself known wherever you can!

 
At October 16, 2006 , Blogger Wesley J. Smith said...

Legalizing research cloning is almost a Democrat Party litmus test, and is wildly supported by most "liberals." So too, with the exception of the disability right movement, is euthanasia supported by most liberals. Ditto, the Schiavo dehydration. So, I don't think I overstated the case.

 
At October 16, 2006 , Blogger Royale said...

But wasn't the Schiavo case about the withdraw of unwanted medical treatment, thus placing it within the realm of passive euthanasia?

Granted, we could argue about what Schiavo "would have wanted", but that would be beside the point as that would have been the business of the court.

Again, I don't see the conceptual difference between passive and active euthanasia so long as "life is sacred." Allowing people to refuse medical treatment was the first step down the slippery slope to the Brave New World.

 
At October 16, 2006 , Blogger Wesley J. Smith said...

That was certainly the pretext in Schiavo. But I think we all know what was really going on.

Just look at the issues I argue about here. Generally, not in every case, "liberals" tend to support the agendas I oppose.

Now what is ironic, is that I think I have the legitimately liberal position. I have a Ralph Nader background, for goodness sake! I consider myself a Martin Luther King liberal. Universal human equality: That's the ticket! But much of what passes for liberal thought today has embraced eugenics, assisted suicide, cloning, futile care theory, etc. I would love to be wrong. It would mean these issues would have little energy in the public square.

 
At October 16, 2006 , Blogger Royale said...

"That was certainly the pretext in Schiavo. But I think we all know what was really going on."

What I saw was an overly active Congress who wanted to overturn Marbury v. Madison and decide cases isntead of court, make private medical decisions instead of doctors, all without allocating a single cent to pay for ongoing medical care.

But I digress, I don't think this is a left-right, liberal-conservative issue. I think all would agree that human life is important. But from that starting point, people diverge greatly on what that means and who should decide at the margins. Should individuals or government?

Personally, I wouldn't stop with "human life is important," but ALL life is important, including animal life. Philosophically, I derive it from the capacity to feel pain, but also general environmental ethic. It's not humanizing the rest of nature, but rather quite compassionate, which is the most human trait of all.


One thing that is never discussed here, but plays an undeniable role, is economics. Take Schiavo - who should pay if she stayed on life support? It's one thing to make the "proper" decision or say something akin to "human life is more valuable than money." Fine. Open your wallet and pay for it.

If the government makes decisions, then the government should pay for it. If government does not want to pay for the medical treatment, then don't take the decision from the doctors and families.

 
At October 16, 2006 , Blogger Wesley J. Smith said...

Schiavo won $700,000 plus from a jury to care for her and provide rehab--denied by her guardian husband who had to have a court order to have her teeth cleaned. Most of the money was spent on lawyers to make her dead.

Humans have an obligation to animals, but we are not equal. The ability to feel pain does not make a cow and a human equal. But our empathy, and as you rightly noted, our compassion, certainly gives us an obligtion not to cause gratuitous pain and suffering.

Thanks for your always interesting comments, Royale.

 

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