Peter Singer: Eliminate People Via Abortion, Euthanasia to Alleviate Suffering

Bioethics   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jun 9, 2010   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Peter Singer: Eliminate People Via Abortion, Euthanasia to Alleviate Suffering

by Steven Ertelt Editor
June 9
, 2010

Washington, DC ( — Peter Singer is at it again. He is the Princeton "bioethicist" who suggested euthanizing disabled newborns before and now he has given a sympathetic review to a book that suggests human extinction as a way of preventing human suffering.

Singer doesn’t agree with the supposition, but his take is one that can appreciate killing people to supposedly save the human race.

"In my judgment, for most people, life is worth living. Even if that is not yet the case, I am enough of an optimist to believe that, should humans survive for another century or two, we will learn from our past mistakes and bring about a world in which there is far less suffering than there is now," he writes.

"But justifying that choice forces us to reconsider the deep issues with which I began. Is life worth living? Are the interests of a future child a reason for bringing that child into existence?" he asks.

"And is the continuance of our species justifiable in the face of our knowledge that it will certainly bring suffering to innocent future human beings?" he continues.

Wesley J. Smith, a pro-life bioethicist has a response for Singer, who continues to put forward an ethic that supports abortion and euthanasia.

"Good grief. Under the influence of anti-human advocates like Peter Singer, we have gone in the West from seeking to ‘secure the blessings of liberty for ourselves and our posterity,’ to seriously questioning whether there should be any posterity at all," he writes.

"This is not healthy. But it is the natural consequence of rejecting human exceptionalism," Smith continues, saying the book "illuminates the profound danger of Singer’s utilitarian philosophy and the growing nihilism among the intellectual set. "

Smith explains: "People don’t sit back and coolly make utilitarian decisions. We are more vibrant than that, for good and ill, more messy. Moreover, people who don’t want children that will experience difficulties often make that decision because of the problems it will create in their own lives, a value system promoted by the popular culture–hence the ubiquitous practice of eugenic abortion, and in the Netherlands, infanticide–both of which practices are supported enthusiastically by Singer."

"Reducing childbearing to crass utilitarian measurements and projections of suffering, thus, leads to justifying killing as an answer thereto, illustrating the oppression unleashed by the avoid suffering at all costs attitudes so prevalent today," the attorney and author writes.

Dave Andrusko, a skilled writer at the National Right to Life Committee, also opines on Singer’s remarks.

"Think of Singer this way. If you think of his worldview as if it was a film, left on the cutting floor is every frame of human compassion, every sense that there are any "givens" that we forfeit at our mortal peril," he says.

He says Singer "celebrate[s] nihilism–although with a couple of meaningless qualifiers–and lecture[s] us to that everyone is better off if we attack the most vulnerable, starting with the victims."


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