Honestly, I’m not even sure where to start with this one, so I’ll start this way…Adolf Hitler would be proud. “Pffft,” you might say, “quit being so overly dramatic!” I wish I were. The fact is though, that the objective morality that gives intrinsic value to humanity is being rapidly and systematically suppressed. Understand that, on my view of morality, you can never get rid of it because it is, in fact, objective. Moral Law is as built into the universe by the hand of God every bit as much as other abstract laws such as math and physics are. I get ahead of myself though. To understand where I’m going with this, let’s begin with a brief history lesson.
Sometime around 1939 Adolf Hitler began the “Action T4” program. The T4 program called for the euthenasia of people deemed in German “lebensunwertes Leben”. In English, “life unworthy of life”. According to Hitler’s brand of morality, it was better for society to be rid of any human being that was sub-standard. Who would decide the standard? Well, the Third Reich of course. It started with physically and mentally handicapped people and eventually led to the mass extermination of the Jews. Along the way it included torture of some individuals in the name of science. The Nazi’s wanted to know things such as how long a person could survive in sub-freezing temperatures before they would die, or how long a baby could go without eating before it would die. It was Hitler’s practice of social Darwinism that allowed the Nazis to value some human beings as refuse, and not people.
What does that have to do with us today? In 1973 with Roe Vs Wade the Supreme Court ruled that the existing state bans on abortion were unconstitutional, because we aren’t in a position to decide when life begins. This, I believe, is intellectually dishonest. Everybody knows that “life”, all the way down to the most basic organism, is life. In fact, evolutionary biologists would say that all of “life” began as a single-celled organism. Going by that definition of “life”, there’s no doubt that even the earliest embryo is life. What the court has really allowed is the freedom for us to make our own determination of what is a human being and what is not. They effectively said that we the people have the right to decide which life is a person, and so it is of value, and which is not. We get to decide which is “life unworthy of life”.
Now, this part is critical. This logic allows us, unquestionably fallible human beings, to decide which other life is considered a person, and which is not. On what will we base this decision? I say what defines a person, literally, is the information contained in their DNA. It not only says what a person is, it says who a person is. It says I am not only a human being, but that I am a different human being from you. This new DNA that is the program for a new unique human person, is created at conception. Perhaps you disagree. Perhaps you say, DNA is not enough. You think there ought to be a heart beat. But wait, somebody else thinks that until that mass of “life” reaches some other arbitrary stage of development prior to birth, it isn’t a person yet. Maybe you even think that it isn’t a person until such time as it draws its first breath, so as long as you extinguish it prior to that time, you’ve not killed a person. I can’t understand why we can’t all see this logical slippery slope.
This is essentially the same logical moral quagmire that led to the mass extermination of handicapped people and Jews in Nazi Germany. It’s seems shocking, but I’ve decided it’s shock makes it no less true. What keeps me from saying that I don’t think a mentally handicapped human being is a real person? What about a physically handicapped person? Moreover, for what reasons am I allowed to choose to end it’s life, whether it be a person or not. It seems we do it mostly for our own convenience. That’s why Hitler did it. He wanted a stronger society. Why shouldn’t he? What if a human being is born that I simply find inconvenient. Why can’t I kill it if I get to decide which person has value, or which person is even a person at all. In our self-proclaimed infinite wisdom, which we’ve stolen from God, where do we draw the line?
You think this is overly dramatic? You may have heard that last Friday an Oregon couple was awarded a $2.9 million dollar “wrongful birth” lawsuit against the hospital where their daughter was born. The crime? The hospital had done genetic testing and ensured the couple the baby was healthy. Unfortunately though, the hospital made a mistake, and the baby was born with Down syndrome. The couple’s complaint was that they would have aborted the baby had they known its condition. We’ve previously decided we’re qualified to make the decision to end life at various stages when it is inconvenient to us in general. We’ve now decided that one of those good reasons is that a mentally handicapped human being is the one encoded in the womb. Further, we’ve decided that if we don’t like the hand we’ve been dealt, it is valid to forcibly hold somebody else financially responsible. I just hope this child is mentally handicapped enough that she will never understand how, from her conception, she isn’t able to meet her expectations of what a human person ought to be according to her parents.
Where does it end? I guarantee you this isn’t going anywhere good. How long before we decide we don’t want to pay for the Down syndrome baby when there is a mistake in the testing? Why should our healthcare costs be driven up by these litigious people? Shouldn’t we make it legal for parents to terminate that life without prejudice as soon as they find out a child is mentally or physically handicapped after birth since it isn’t a real person anyway? Perhaps we’ll lobby for a law that the state demand it so society doesn’t have to bear the cost? This is the relativistic morality of scientific naturalism at its finest. We’ve decided to pitch God from the equation and use science and politics to replace Him because we fancy ourselves so much better off as pure nature.
Please wake up. I know I’ve already said this, but in the absence of a foundation for objective morality, there is no right and there is no wrong. They don’t exist. We create them as we please. Hitler was just nature doing what nature does, which is fend for itself. Survival of the fittest. Just like Nietzsche said, the strong should dominate the weak. That’s just the way nature works. We have no grounds to claim anything anybody does is wrong. I think we all know this is false inside of us, but we’ve decided to quit listening to our pesky conscience. Suppressing morality does not make it go away. However, the more we do wrong, the easier it becomes, and the easier it is to do things even more wrong. Still though, objective evil is reamains no matter how self-deluded we become! We must all start looking for it soon. If we don’t, will it be long before we proceed with the unjustified killing of any person that we consider sub-standard, or any child that simply cramps our style, regardless of age? The current line of naturalistic logic won’t disallow it. In fact, it’s already taken the next step.
Think I’m wrong? I haven’t even come to the most horrifying part yet. (Part 2)