Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vermont, is certainly on a roll. He recently packed in thousands in a campaign event in Denver. As former Vice President Joe Biden continues to falter, Sanders is being seen by many as the rival to Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass as the potential new front runner. However, the candidate has a fly in the ointment that may harm his standing with minority voters who constitute one of the main constituencies for the Democratic Party.
Mollie Hemingway, a senior editor for the Federalist, was on Bret Baier’s news program on Fox News recently. She did not mince words about Bernie’s recent proposal to provide birth control and abortion services for developing world countries. Sanders has justified the idea as a way to fight climate change.
“And he further said that he thought that U.S. taxpayers should fund abortions in third world countries. This was actually a really interesting and horrible thing to hear someone say that part of the global warming fighting agenda is to go after black and brown kids in third world countries, particularly from someone like Bernie Sanders who has three houses. But there is something to be appreciated about the candor with which he displayed his eugenics and his support for eugenics.”
What Hemmingway is suggesting is that the spectacle of an old, rich white guy proposing that the minority populations should be reduced does not have good optics. Hemmingway’s use of the word “eugenics” is also interesting. Margaret Sanger, an early advocate of birth control and a founder of Planned Parenthood, was a warm supporter of eugenics.
The idea is that birth control and legal abortion would be used to decrease the population of ethnic groups that Sanger and others thought to be inferior, not just African Americans and Hispanic Americans, but people of Italian and Irish extraction. The notion was largely discredited when Nazi Germany took the idea much farther and attempted to exterminate people it found to be inferior, particularly Jews. The irony is that a Jewish American is now attempting to revive the idea.
The National Review noted that Bernie’s idea to reduce the population of black and brown people has roots in the 1970s anti-population growth hysteria.
“The view that human beings are an unsustainable drain on limited resources goes back to the 18th-century thinker Thomas Malthus and, more recently, the Stanford University biologist Paul Ehrlich. In his 1968 book The Population Bomb, Ehrlich thunderously pronounced, ‘The battle to feed all of humanity is over.’
“In the event, we figured out how to make agriculture more efficient and have been feeding people just fine (when not prevented from doing so by wars and other man-made calamities). Nonetheless, Ehrlich hasn’t stopped predicting the explosion of his population bomb ever since, telling The Guardian recently that the collapse of civilization is ‘a near certainty.’”
The National Review also notes that if climate change is the reason, Bernie Sanders is way off the mark.
“In his original work, Ehrlich put an emphasis on overly fertile Third World countries, just as Bernie Sanders did the other night. But if consumption and carbon emissions are the concern, it’s rich people in developed countries who are the bigger problem and should be dealt with accordingly (a task for which Sanders is dismayingly well-suited).”
The National Review aims Sanders’ Malthusian policy by suggesting that children are not a burden, but a gift. The child one aborts could be the one who grows up and develops new sources of energy, solutions to climate change that do not involve limiting population or enacting dystopian policies such as the Green New Deal.
Besides the horrible look at a rich white guy telling developing world people that are having too many kids, some analysts suggest that he has missed the target insofar as addressing climate change. Just as Paul Ehrlich turned out to be wrong because of the unanticipated advances in agriculture, Bernie Sanders will turn out to be wrong because of anticipated advances in energy production. Technologies such as nuclear energy and carbon capture, both of which Bernie has rejected out of hand, without giving any reason for, are due to replace polluting energy production much more effectively than solar and wind.
Politically, Sanders’ proposal is horrible if he wants to be elected as the first “democratic socialist” president. Telling an important part of the Democratic Party that there are too many of them would not, according to most political observers such as Mollie Hemmingway, to be politically smart.