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Eugenics & Depopulation Are The Means; Scientific Dictatorship Is The Goal!

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The great bulk of the world’s work is accomplished by strong and hardy individuals. It is true that great contributions have been made to civilization by physical weaklings, but this is rather the excep-tion: Physical weakness, if hereditary, is cacogenic, for a race of weaklings cannot long endure. Physical weakness is not the menace that feeble-mindedness is, but it is, nevertheless, great. A logical classi-fication of physical weaklings has not yet been made. This class includes individuals who are sane, are not feeble-minded, are not de-formed and are not paupers, nor do they belong to any other of the socially inadequate groups, but still they lack constitutional vigor and stamina. Some of the older physicians refer to “tone” as a state of general weakness that appears to complicate all diatheses.  It might be possible to classify asthenic individuals in reference to the organs and tissues that are weak, such as individuals with weak bones or muscles, or with weak vital organs, such as lungs, arteries, stomach, or kidneys. Although not especially predisposed to any specific disease, yet they fall prey to almost any stressful circumstance, and the innate weakness appears to interfere with the full exercise of the normal function of mind and body in either physical or intellectual pursuits. “A sound mind in a sound body” is as much the motto of eugenics as it appeared to be the motto of the ancient Greeks. Hereditary physical inadequacy is cacogenic.


In regard to the diathesis or predisposition to a specific ailment or undesirable condition, the problem does not turn upon whether diathesis exists at all, but only to what degree and in what cases diathesis is a fact and to what degree it is injurious to the welfare of the race.
Hereditary traits do not date from birth, for birth is only a change of environment. The hereditary potentialities of an individual are determined past recall when the two parental gametes meet in fertilization to form the zygote.

By direct heredity is meant the transmission of a trait or a quality that will, in spite of controlled environment, appear at some time in the course of development of the individual. Thus the extra digit in polydactylism appears early during the second month of gestation. In children destined to be brown-eyed, the brown iris pigment appears during the first few days after birth. Normally, a child begins to shed his milk teeth at the age of about six years. With males, the beard appears in early manhood. Usually Huntington’s chorea appears in tainted individuals at the age of approximately 50 years. All of these are traits of direct heredity. In these, heredity is the primary factor, environment has but little to do with them.

There is a second type of heredity, which might well be called “indirect heredity” or “heredity-diathesis,” “susceptibility” or “pre-disposition.” In this sort of heredity environment plays a much greater part in determining the human trait or condition than it plays in direct heredity, but even in such cases the exogenous forces are not all-important. Heredity is as it were the foundation upon which environment builds the trait. In such cases heredity, although a less powerful factor, is just as definite as with direct inheritance, and the end product is a composite of hereditary and extrinsic factors.

Thus, people do not, biologically speaking, directly inherit tuberculosis and yet they inherit directly a constitutional make-up possibly both functional and chemical, as well as structural; that causes them to fall an easy prey to this disease. People do not inherit poisoning of the poison ivy (Rhus toxicodendron) type, still some persons are immune to the effects of this poison, while others readily become affected by it. Thus, in reference to their susceptibility and immunity, there appears to be a chemical difference in persons which is directly hereditary, but it requires the presence of an exogenous agent, in addition to the innate lack of resistance, to cause the affection.

Thirdly, there are many diseases and conditions in which the hereditary difference of people plays a very minor role or is entirely negligible as a causative factor, while environment plays the all-important part. Thus, everybody appears to be more or less susceptible to “colds,” and possibly to the more infectious virulent infectious diseases such as rabies.

There are thus all degrees of the influence of heredity in deter-mining a human condition. Let the following scale, beginning with absolutely no influence and ending with all influence, represent this fluctuation.

10.   Polydactylism.

There is, thus, no sharp line between diathesis and direct heredity, on the one hand, and between diathesis and purely extrinsic influences, on the other. They appear to grade into one another.

Even within the same group of disorders,e. g.,insanity, there is a wide range in the relative roles of heredity and of extrinsic factors in the etiology of the disease.

The Twenty-third Annual Report of the New York State Commission in Lunacy (February 14, 1912) gives the following table, showing heredity in cases of admissions to the fourteen state hospitals for the insane for the year ending September 30, 1911:

Excepting at the Kings Park and the St. Lawrence State Hospitals, none of the fourteen New York State hospitals for the insane maintains field workers for the express purpose of studying, in the home territories, the family histories of persons committed to their respective institutions.

The very cursory examinations into family histories, which are doubtless the best that can be provided with the present facilities—or rather lack of facilities—for such study, render it impossible to secure conclusive data from such records. “Heredity” without extended data for each specific case means but little. However, the result of the examinations recorded in this table are at least indicative of the true conditions, and are so evaluated.
If it can be established that some families and some individuals of the human race are by nature susceptible to specific diseases, while others are not, then there is a difference in the eugenic value of such families and such individuals.

A.Species Difference

There is no one who can doubt that the species differ in their susceptibility and immunity to specific diseases. Every hog breeder knows that hog cholera may destroy his whole herd, while the other animals of the same farm (including the owner himself), although doubtless infected, do not contract the disease. Other diseases, such as tuberculosis, affect men, cattle, and chickens, but apparently do not affect horses. The development of varieties of wheat and corn resist-ant to certain fungous diseases are among the greatest joint triumphs of modern breeding and agronomy. The immunity of the zebra and the susceptibility of the horse to the disease following the bite of the tsetse fly is a known fact.

Differential immunity in reference to species has ample and obvious data to support it. The determination of the degree of variation in immunity among races of the same species—in this case the human species—and among strains or families within these races and in turn among individuals of the same family is the problem that concerns this study.

B.Racial Difference

The following study in “Biostatistics of the Jewish Race Pertaining Especially to Immunity and Susceptibility,” by Lester Levyn,
M. D., of Buffalo, N. Y., is reprinted with his permission from the New York Medical Journal of May 10, 1913.

It establishes the racial differentiation in immunity:

The relative immunity to many contagious and infectious diseases and susceptibility to certain other infections (principally of a neurotic origin) possessed by the Jewish race present a field of study of a most interesting nature.The immunity can be traced as far back as the Talmudic periods, and well proved facts and statistics give evidence of its survival today.

Why should the Jew, physically inferior to his Christian brethren, ward off with more potent factors the onslaught of disease and emerge from the conflict with a lesser mortality? 

Let us for a moment make a brief anthropological study of the Jew. His average height is 162.1 cm., span of arms 169.1 cm., girth around chest about 81 cm., making him the narrowest and the shortest of races. The skulls are chiefly brachycephalic, probably attributable to cerebral development.There is no race that appears less strong, and none that can so well resist misfortune. The reason for this is that in soul as well as in body, morally as well as physically, the Jew is the product of a selection that has lasted two thousand years, and has been the most severe and most painful which living beings have ever had to endure. In appearance, notably in the large Jewries of the East, he is small, puny, sickly, pale and shrunken, yet under this frail exterior is hidden an intense vitality.“The Jew may be likened to those lean actresses, the Rachels and Sarahs, who spit blood, and seem to have but a spark of life left, yet who when they have stepped upon the stage put forth indomitable strength and courage.” Taking into consideration then the mode of life to which the race was so long subjected it is not strange that it should present peculiarities to the physiologist and statisician.

The first thing to attract our attention is the fact that the longevity of the Jew is greater than that of any other race. This is so well established that in certain countries, America for instance, the Jews are regarded by life insurance companies as especially desirable clients. Almost anywhere, particularly in those countries where the laws are not such as to render existence intolerable to them, the average duration of life among the Jews is considerably higher than that of adherents of other religions and faiths. This does not apply solely to countries where the Jews are largely of the well-to-do classes, but as well to the poor Jews of Germany, Hungary, England and Roumania. The United States Census Report states his “expectation of life” to be fifty-seven years, while that of his Christian brother is but forty-one years.The difference is visibly one of distinction.

We should not be justified, however, in regarding this superiority as a racial phenomenon of a purely physiological nature.  It is doubtless due in large part to the difference in customs, to the family spirit of the Jews, to their devotion as parents, to the care of the mother for her children; and also to the chastity in the marriage relations; to the prescriptions of the law, and to the consideration and respect shown by the husband for the health of his wife. Much of the racial relative immunity to various diseases may be directly attributed to a strict adherence to the laws governing the Jewish faith, which embody rigid aphorisms on bodily and dietary cleanliness. Many of the fundamental laws of Judaism have for a nucleus hygienic principles.

The early rabbinical teachings forbade eating the flesh of an animal that had taken poison, or the eating of meat and fish together, or drinking water left uncovered over night. The danger of drinking water at the beginning of the seasons was taught the people. In times of plague the rabbis advised the necessity of remaining at home and avoiding the society of men. It was forbidden to touch during a meal parts of the body, where perspiration was profuse, to eat from unclean vessels or with dirty hands, or to eat hearty meals before retiring. It is thereby seen that the Torah wished to make of Israel a people that should be healthy and holy, sanus et sanctus.

The laws concerning the preparation and selection of all flesh for food, scorned and ridiculed for many generations, are now regarded as important
factors in the eradication of disease. In the slaughter houses the methods employed by the shochetsin the selection of animals for consumption are worthy of mention. No animals are considered fit for food which show but the slightest evidences of illness or whose bodies in any way are wounded or injured. Such animals are branded unclean, and therefore unfit for food. True the sacrifice of such animals creates a monetary loss, but any sacrifice conducive to an increased resistance to disease and prolongation of life is one which the public will gladly suffer.

In enumerating the various diseases to which the race is comparatively and relatively immune, that which stands pre-eminently foremost on the list is tuberculosis. Unfortunately, advancing civilization, with its congestion of population and subsequent increase in ghetto life, is tending to diminish the extent of this immunity. Dr. Behrend says: “The comparative immunity from the tuberculous diathesis has been recognized by all physicians whose special experience entitles them to express an opinion.” Despite the horrible ghetto environment statistics evidence a lesser extent of the disease than among other races, while in the better classes of Jews, not restricted by ghetto life, they are but rarely victims of the disease.

Many factors peculiar to the race are instrumental to the production of this immunity. Lombroso considers the immunity to be in large part attributable to the fact that the vocations of the Jews require little or no exposure.  Another important cause is the cleanliness of the housewives. Instead of resorting to extensive use of the dusting brush they utilize damp cloths in wiping all surfaces, by this means raising less dust and diminishing the risk of inhaling tubercle bacilli. Lastly, but of vast significance, is the fact that the body vitality is not diminished by excessive alcoholic indulgences.

The liability of the race to pneumonic infection is less than that of other races. Reasons for this are that their occupational pursuits are largely of a confining nature, and do not necessitate exposure to the vicissitudes of the weather. Of greater moment is the fact of the race being non-alcoholic.  Smallpox has a less marked affiliation for the race. This malady attacks the Jew far less frequently than the non-Jew. During the epidemic of smallpox of 1900-1903 it is remarkable to note that the race was virtually free from its ravages. The urgency and necessity for vaccination have always held sway among the Jews, they being strong supporters of the efficacy of vaccination, and the promptness with which they accede to it has established this freedom.  The existence of typhoid fever is somewhat less among the Jews than among other races, and the death rate from that disease is lower among them. For a period of six years in the city of New York the typhoid mortality rate was as follows:Germans, 28.01; Italians, 26.16; Irish, 25.56; English, 19.77; French, 18.29; Bohemians, 18.04; Armenians (white), 17.40; Hungarians (mostly Jews), 12.36; Russians and Poles (mostly Jews), 9.19.

The racial resistance to intestinal disorders is far greater than that of other peoples. In the city of New York, in the most densely populated Jewish settle-ment, where 80 per cent. of the inhabitants are of that faith, an analysis of the statistics of the Department of Health shows that for a period of ten years diphtheria and croup killed 5 per 100,000 less than among the Christian race.  Bearing in mind the low morality of urban Jews, remembering the admirable conditions for the spread of infection prevalent in the East Side, knowing the congestion, the poverty, the miserably ventilated sweatshops, the never-ceasing toiling, can we place belief other than in their wonderful powers of resistance!  The low mortality is not confined to the adults of the race, but applies to infants as well. The enjoyment of a lower infant mortality is traceable to the deeper devotion bestowed in the children by parents, and the fact that weakened vitality due to alcohol and lues is not inherited. The precocity of the Jewish mind and the rapidity of mental growth are also largely due to this abstemiousness.  The number of stillborn children is much smaller among the Israelites than others, and there are notably fewer illegitimate births.

The prevalence of venereal disease is not nearly as widespread as is seen in others. The ancient and ever present custom of circumcision is the main
contributing factor to this absence, enhanced by generations of culture, suffering and tribulations, which have placed the senses under the rule of reason. The race stands today as the least carnal of all.

While the race enjoys this relative immunity to many diseases, it is not to be envied in every respect, for there remain afflictions which seem particularly prone to attack the Hebrew. Especially noteworthy of mention are maladies of the nerve centres, cerebral and spinal diseases and diabetes mellitus. The latter occurs from two to six times more frequently among Jews than among non-Jews. Strangely, while the disease exhibits such a marked predilection for the race, it is better endured than among other races. Von Noorden states that patients with glycosuria lasting for years, without much discomfort, die from what is supposed to be heart failure. Death through coma is more commonly seen in the Jew (Stern).

With our present knowledge of the etiology of diabetes mellitus the only reasons offered for the predisposition of the race to the disease are the nervous theories, together with such contributing factors as sedentary habits, lack of exercise, high living and overfeeding.

Of the nervous disorders, hysteria and neurasthenia affect the race most frequently. The causes commonly assigned are:

(1) The fact that they are largely town dwellers, these functional nervous diseases being common to the population of a great city;

(2) neurasthenia is seen mostly among the commercial classes, bankers and speculators, of whom the Jews comprise a great proportion.  However, those of the poorer classes, laborers and artisans, are not exempt;

(3) consanguineous marriage was at one time a reason offered, but the more modern views that such marriages when contracted between healthy individuals are not at all detrimental to the health of the offspring contradict this theory;

(4) the repeated persecutions and abuses to which the race has been subjected;

(5) such massacres as occurred in Kishineff, in 1903, were of frequent occurrence in the Middle Ages, and their effect on the nervous system of the race could not be other than a rigorous one, transmitted hereditarily;

(6) the excessive mental and intellectual tax demanded to overcome and outspread environment.  While these conditions rarely, if ever, cause death, yet they exert a most harmful tendency. Kraft-Ebing states: “Neurasthenia and other nervous dis-eases affect the Jews with exceptional severity.”

Amaurotic idiocy and the Mongolian type of idiocy are frequently observed among Hebrews. The causes again advanced are referable to neurotic taints.  Marriages of those of near kin have been considered a prominent cause for the prevalence of idiocy in the race, but statistics do not bear out this contention.  “It appears that the proportion of idiotic children who are the offspring of cousins is not in excess of the ratio of consanguineous marriages to marriages generally, and the sole evil result of such marriages is the intensification in the offspring of some morbid proclivity common to both parents.” In summarizing, it may be said that the race suffers chiefly from the functional nervous diseases, and that the organic nervous degenerations such as locomotor ataxia and pro-gressive paralysis of the insane are uncommonly seen. Minor states that serious organic diseases of the brain and spinal cord are less frequently met with among Jews than among others.

Apoplexy is another affliction which attacks the Jew with a great degree of frequency.  Lombroso attributes the connection to the racial temperament of emotion, struggling with adverse conditions and the persecution of centuries.  Diseases of the heart and circulatory system are more common in Jews, in the United States being double that of the general population. Articular rheumatism so frequently seen in the race is an important etiological factor in the production of organic heart disease. Arteriosclerosis also prevails largely among members of the race, owing to excessive activity, worry and care. Intermittent claudication attacks the race more often than others, which condition is possibly due to the prevalence of arteriosclerosis.

The proportion of blindness is greater among modern Jews than among nonJews. In America, however, this does not hold true, owing to the stringency of the immigration laws, which prevent the entrance of defective classes, including the blind. Considering the etiology of blindness it might be expected that the 35 affliction should attack the race less than others. The most important cause of blindness in the new-born from 30 to 50 per cent. of cases is gonorrhea infection from the mothers.

It is a well-known fact that gonorrhea is comparatively rare in Jewish women.  Conceding this it would be reasonable to think that Jews would have at least 25 per cent. less blindness than non-Jews. In spite of this the condition is common to the race. Consanguinity, careful investigators con-tend, is not a factor in the production of blindness, apart from heredity. Trachoma, glaucoma and diseases of the cornea and uveal tract are largely seen in the race, all of which conditions may lead to blindness.  It is most interesting to note that suicide in the race appears to be less common than among others. Among ancient Hebrews but few cases are recorded, only four cases being specifically mentioned in the Old Testament, those of Samson, Saul and his arrow bearer, and Ahitophel. Later it appears to have occurred with greater frequency. Josephus records the suicide of several thou-sand Jewish soldiers who were besieged by the Romans in the stronghold of Masaden in the year 72 or 73 A. D. During medieval periods of persecution the Jews often chose self-destruction as a means of relief. In modern times the Jews are less liable to suicide.  It is generally known that suicide is on the increase in most of the European countries as well as in America.Marselli explains this increase as due to the effects of “that universal and complex influence to which we give the name ‘civilization’.” Yet, notwithstanding this pres-sure, the Jew at present rarely resorts to self-destruction. Among non-Jews about one-third of all suicides are directly or indirectly attributable to abuse of alcoholic beverages, and the paucity of such cases in Jews is again explained by their abstemiousness.


1.  John S. Billings: Vital Statistics of Jews in the United States.
2.  M.Beadles: The Insane Jew, Journal of Mental Science, xxvi.
3.  M. Fishberg: Health and Sanitation of Immigrant Jewish Population of New York City.
4.  Idem: Comparative Pathology of Jews, New York Medical Journal, lxxiii, 13-14. 
5.  Idem: Relative Infrequency of Tuberculosis Among Jews, American Medicine, Nov. 2, 1902.
6.  Hugo Hoppe: Krankheiten und Sterblichkeit bei Juden und Nichtjuden, 1903.
7.  Hugh: Longevity and Other Biostatic Peculiarities of the Jewish Race, Medical Record, 1873.
8.  Jacobs: Racial Characteristics of Modern Jews.
9.  Lombroso: The Man of Genius.
10. Pollatschek: Zur Aetologie des Diabetes Mellitus, Zeitschrift fuer klinische Medizin.
11. Ripley: The Races of Europe.
12. Heinrich Singer: Allgemeine und specielle Krankheitslehre der Juden, 1904.
13. Von Noorden: Uber Diabetes Mellitus, Berliner klinische Wochenschrift, pp. 1117, 1900.
15. Funk & Wagnalls: Cyclopedia of Temperance and Prohibition.
14. Singer Et Alii: Jewish Encyclopedia.

C. Family and Individual Differences

Besides the species and racial differences, there is also a family or strain difference and lastly within the fraternity an individual differ-ence in natural susceptibility to a specific disease. The following case and family histories were selected by Dr. A. J. Rosanoff from his histories to illustrate these facts.
The first history is that of a family characterized bymanic-depressive insanity, in which family many of the individuals appeared to break down almost independently of exogenous causes. In the second family there is a nervous tendency, but, compared to the first family, they are quite stable. In an affected individual of this second family it required agreat array of formidable exogenous causes to bring about this disease.

Family history: II-7. 2678-6624. Admitted Dec. 20, 1905—53 years. First attack 20 years ago, 1885 (at 33 years). Was in Bloomingdale for two months, has had several attacks since. Present attack, commitment paper says: “Wishes to use the telephone to speak to Mr. Ryan and others with whom he has important financial engagements. Said that he went into business in Wall Street three months ago without a cent and now is worth $2,000.000; that his present incarceration is due to a conspiarcy of his wife and certain financial people, who are afraid of his power, fear he will ruin them.” On admission: “Said he was glad to be sent here, that he was of a happy disposition and could get along any place.” Exceed-ingly irritable when questioned ; shows distractibility and flight. May 7, 1906: “Quiet and composed.”  June 11, 1906: “Discharged as recovered.”  Readmitted April 29, 1910: “Elated, said he was perfectly contented with life.” “Could draw a cheque for any amount, which would be immediately honored at any of the banking houses in New York City. His influence is so great that, should he enter any broker’s office, he could immediately cause a rise or precipitate a fall of stock on the market by purchasing it for a rise or a fall.” “Restless, does not sleep at night.”  June, 1910: “Noisy, destructive and mischievous; tears clothing, breaks plaster, etc.” “Urinated and defecated on the floor of his room and threw faeces out on the hall.”July, 1910: “Today climbed water leader in court-yard and escaped to roof of cross hall; was gotten down by charge nurse.” Oct.  2, 1910: Died of dysentery. Patient had graduated from C. C. N. Y. Said he was not a good student, because he was always mischievous, never inclined to study. II-6. 2676. Admitted Nov. 6, 1905. First attack 20 years; was at Black-well’s Island in 1862. “Many previous attacks.” On admission : “Great depres-sion and agitation, cried, stated he was justly punished for all the sins of his past life.” “I will be lost and damned; I am more than an outcast; my friends do not recognize me or care for me; there is no worse sinner on earth; if I was ground up into smoke I would not think that I had been punished enough.” Jan., 1906: “Failing physically, now confined to bed, as he is too feeble to be up and around.” “Questions had to be frequently repeated, and after long pauses he answered in a barely audible tone of voice.” Oct., 1906: “Constantly picks at his ears and hands.” Nov. 3, 1906: “Died.”  II-2. 2882-4427-30067. Admission May 8, 1906—29 years. First attack in 1894 (age 29 years) was at Amityville. Second, third, fourth and fifth attacks between 1895 and 1904 at New Jersey State Hospital, Morris Plains, N. J. Sixth attack: Admitted to K. P. May 8, 1906: “Laughs and talks incessantly for hours at a time. Sleepless for the past five nights; spends sleepless nights singing and talking wildly for hours at a time.” May 25, 1906: “Assaulted night nurse; kicked her in the stomach and pulled her hair.Nov. 21, 1906: “Cheerful, agree-able, industrious.” Aug. 25, 1907: “Discharged as recovered.Seventh attack:
Admitted to K. P. Nov. 20, 1907: “Would lie in bed all day without excuse; has been delirious and wild.” On admission: “Elated, very loquacious, showing dis-tractibility and flight of ideas, restless, very erotic, making obscene suggestions and remarks. Jan., 1908: “Improved, works in embroidery class.” March, 1908: “Disturbed, noisy, threatening.” June, 1908: “Quiet, neat, industrious.” March, 1909: “Paroled.”  Nov. 22, 1909: “Returned from parole by two attendants, resisted and caused much trouble en route.  April, 1910: “Disturbed, receiving paraldehyde.” Oct. 25, 1910: “Paroled.” April 24, 1911: “Parole extended.June 15, 1911: “Returned from parole; somewhat confused; careless, untidy, indolent.” Aug., 1911: “Disturbed, restless, untidy.” Nov., 1911: “Much improved, very industrious, doing fancy work, cheerful.”  Dec. 21, 1911: Paroled.
II-10. 6295-44746. Admitted Jan. 5, 1910-62years. “Has had epileptic con-vulsions since she was in her ‘teens.’ ” Commitment paper: “Patient sad; at times she has thought she saw her parents and others in their heavenly home.  “At times she is very irritable and abusive.” Jan. 31, 1910: “Three convulsions since admission.” “Thinks her aunt, who died some time ago, will meet her when she is called home by Jesus Christ, her Blessed Savior.” March, 1910:
“Screams if assisted at dressing, going to and from meals, etc. Says everyone is trying to kill her.” Aug., 1910: “Neat, tidy, clean, industrious, assisting with the mending.” Sept., 1910: “At times thinks she hears God’s voice. Reads her Bible a great deal.” March, 1911: “Irritable, childish, easily excited. At times very noisy and yells. Convulsions at irregular intervals.” III-3.2125-2769-4215-16424. Admission Oct. 27, 1904—19 years. First attack 1898 (age 19): “Despondent, wept, conversed but little, slept poorly, appetite was not good, heard strange voices; was three months in sanitarium; recovered.” Second attack 1900: “Again despondent; three months in sanitarium; recovered.”
Third attack 1901: “Again despondent; five months in sanitarium; recovered.” Fourth attack: “Same; in sanitarium six months; recovered.” Fifth attack began Oct. 15, 1904: “Downhearted, laughed to herself, wept, talked to herself, slept and ate poorly, imagined people were in her room, heard strange voices; remained in one place for hours taking no notice of anything; then became disturbed, destruc-tive, and violent and was committed to K. P.” On admission: “Depression, re-tardation in movements and speech, difficulty in thinking; thinks she is dead.” June 14, 1905: “Discharged as recovered.” Sixth attack admitted to K. P. March 15, 1906: “Patient said she quarreled with her mother; does not sleep well nights; she hears noises and voices; at times she is so depressive that she has thought of killing herself; was restless.” July, 1906: “Filthy in habits, requires to be dressed and undressed, destroys her clothing, exposes her person.” Feb., 1907:
“Discharged as recovered.” Seventh attack, admission Aug. 10, 1907: “Boisterous, says her mother is a damned fool; says all the time she wants to get married; at times extremely erotic and obscene; often says, ‘Oh, I am going out of my mind, I know I am, I can’t control myself.’ ” Nov., 1907: “Says she is so restless that she cannot keep still.” Feb., 1908: “Very stupid and untidy; has to be dressed and undressed; when addressed will not converse; retarded in move-ments, but shows no depression.” March, 1909: “Destructive, noisy and violent.” Nov. 9, 1911: “Has shown steady improvement; is less irritable; industrious and interested in ward activities.” Paroled Nov. 12. March 30, 1912: “Returned from parole; patient was restless both day and night; interested in every man that passed the house.”
Sept., 1909: ‘‘Parole extended.”
June 18, 1912: “Parole extended.”

Family History. Paternal grandmother (I, 2) died at 78 years of age of dropsy; she was bright, but cranky; would often scold her son for no cause; was emotional, had strong unreasonable likes and dislikes; was more fond of her other children than of her son (II, 1) (patient’s father), who kept her when she was old until she died. Father (II, 1) is excitable, emotional, rather effusive, becomes lacrimose when speaking of his father, who died many years ago.  Mother (II, 2) is normal, but is said to be somewhat inclined to worry over trifles. One brother (III, 4) has “a bad temper,” abused his younger sisters; eloped and married at the age of 19 years, and has kept away from the family ever since. One sister (III, 6) is loquacious and egotistical. Another is more or less “nervous” and “excitable.”

Personal History. Psychosis allied to manic-depressive insanity. Age 28.  Admitted May 27, 1911, ——.The conditions which brought about the psy-chosis were truly formidable.The patient, a young woman, of excitable, emo-tional and rather unstable stock, described as cranky, hot-tempered and stubborn in disposition, becomes involved in a love affair followed by an engagement at the age of 23 years. During the engagement period she reluctantly permits her fiance to have sexual relations with her, and during the same period she dis-covers in him disagreeable and repulsive traits, but at the end of a year marries him in spite of her repulsion, feeling that it is “too late to back out.”Her married life is unhappy. The husband turns out to be a selfish, inconsiderate and jealous man; he supplies her with money very stintingly, though he goes out, plays cards, stays out evenings; he prevents her from having any diversions and objects even to her visiting her own relations. She desires children, but the husband does not, and she is deprived of sexual gratification owing to the pre-cautions taken to avoid impregnation. About a year after marriage, after a quarrel on account of her going out to visit her folks, her husband leaves her.  At the end of a week “her pride is broken” and she goes to his place of business to beg him to return. Friction between them continues, and two years later he deserts her again.
She becomes depressed, discouraged, develops self-accusations; suffers much from insomnia and loss of appetite and becomes much run down physically; then she grows very irritable, has occasional agitated tantrums; later begins to think people are watching her and taking snapshots of her to obtain evidence to be used by her Though she begs him to return he refuses.   She  becomes depressed, discouraged, develops self-accusations;  suffers  much  from  insomnia and loss of appetite and becomes much run down physically; then she grows very irritable, has  occasional agitated tantrums; later begins to think people are watching her and taking snapshots of her to obtain evidence to be used by her husband in a suit for divorce; finally she makes several suicidal attempts and is committed.

Patient was born in New York on Nov. 20, 1883. In childhood had measles, but otherwise had been physically well. She went to school at the age of 8 years and left at 17, having reached the fifth grammar grade; she did not get along well in her studies, was left back several times, but her failures were attributed to disinclination to study and not to dullness; her attendance was regular. After leaving school she stayed at home and did housework.

Patient describes her own disposition as sociable, but cranky and easily irritated and “soft,” that is to say, easily moved to tears when her feelings were hurt. Was rather fond of going out. Occasionally read a newspaper, but very seldom any novels. Physically she was evidently somewhat run down; weighed 115 pounds—her usual weight being 130 pounds. She had frequent crying spells; she never thought she would land in a place like this. During the first two or three months following her admission her condition improved slightly, as her listlessness and bewilderment disappeared. She cooperated better in medical examinations and was found to be well oriented, showed a normal grasp of her surroundings and a good memory of recent and remote occurrences. She continued, however, to have crying spells and even tantrums of agitation; said she wanted to die, etc.  From time to time she would express delusional ideas, which were, however, rather in the shape of suspicions and conjectures, and not well-established delusions. Thus she thought that her husband had been the cause of insanity, not in her case alone, but also in the case of some other patients here. She thought also that he had people here spying on her in order that they might obtain evidence for a suit of divorce. She believed that many people here knew of her disgrace and humiliation, and that they talked about her. At one time she expressed the idea that her sister and parents wanted to be rid of her, as she had caused them so much trouble.

She improved, however, gradually. In the latter part of September, 1911, she weighed 135 pounds. She was more composed mentally and more rational.  She now (October, 1911) employs herself in making baskets.  In November, 1911, though not yet recovered completely, she was discharged into the custody of her relatives at their request.  Some weeks following her discharge she wrote a letter to the hospital stating that she was again living with her husband and that she was feeling entirely well.  These two family histories justify the statement that there is a difference in families in reference to their innate resistance to manic-depressive insanity. In the first family the disease might almost be said to be inherited, so surely was the trait to appear; in the second family it is quite clear that there is not a direct inheritance of this disease, but there is, nevertheless, a specific predisposition or diathesis to it.

To summarize—the factors of heredity and environment are constantly interacting to bring about end results in human as well as in plant and animal characteristics. No useful purpose is served either by eugenists or by humanitarians in striving to claim for the one or the other of these forces the all-important role in human affairs. One might as well contend that the sodium plays a more important part than chlorine in the organization and characteristics of common salt.  Truth, not victory for an object of especial solicitude, should be sought.

We should be content to determine the relative influence of nature and nurture in selected cases or groups of related cases. In those wherein heredity is demonstrated to be the prime factor, the control of heredity should be the means used by society in controlling the qualities so determined. It is the business of eugenics to seek out such instances and to develop a practical method of control. It is the business of education, medicine, humanitarianism and other environmental or euthenical agencies to find out to what extent and how the hereditary qualities of individual human beings can be directed along desired channels and to exert every possible effort in so directing them. The one concerns educability; the other education.


The extent of hereditary ailments in the human race is extremely great. The more complex the organism or machine, the greater the likelihood that it will develop a serious defect. The human organism is the most complex of all and, for each functional trait, there is doubtless a complex structure susceptible of defects and variations tending to follow certain set lines, upsetting the essential functioning and more or less handicapping the entire organism. Organic progress seems to have been effected by the “rouging out” of individuals possessing in their make-up unfit traits. Nature has been fully as ruthless in her processes of eliminating physical deformity as in striking down the possessor of mental feebleness. The more grossly deformed individuals such as acephalus(“freaks” or “monsters” as they are sometimes called) are not in themselves cacogenic, for they are either cut down early in ontogenesis, or, if permitted to live, they are incapacitated for parent-hood. If such individuals could reproduce, many of their traits would doubtless be hereditary, but as such defects are serious enough to cause death before the reproductive age or to prevent reproduction, such deterioration has so overdone itself that the excess acts eugenically.  The following table excludes these so-called monsters because not they, but the stock that produces them, is cacogenic. At this juncture, it is again opportune to call attention to the fact that it is the border-line defect that is most cacogenic, for it is a hereditary defect that can, with the aid of a kindly civilization, be bolstered up into a semblance of social fitness and then encouraged, and often enabled thereby to propagate its kind.

A deformity is a variation from the ordinary or normal structure that interferes with the normal functioning of the organ, and, consequently, handicaps or incapacitates the individual possessing it. So close is the relation between structure and function that deformity in its more general sense can be made to include at least the basis of all human ailments. The following table outlines this view:

Eugenics is concerned with physical fitness no less than with mental and moral adequacy, for a race cannot long endure and rise in culture unless its members be strong and dexterous physically.  Mate selection has always been and doubtless always will be greatly influenced by patent personal physical fitness and comeliness; it is a determining factor of high value. Following the growth and dif-fusion of knowledge concerning the hereditary nature of physical defects, hereditary physical potentialities will also become assets in selection. Thus eugenical education influencing mate selection on a nation-wide scale must be depended upon to stamp out physical de-formity when it is not associated with mental or with moral unfitness; when it is so linked segregation, supported, if need be, by sterilization, appears to be the proper eugenical remedy.


Social adequacy depends so much upon the proper functioning of the organs of special sense that individuals suffering from their absence or their deformity are properly considered as one of the primary groups of the socially inadequate. The organs of special sense are very intricately constructed and hence subject to a corre-spondingly numerous and serious group of disorders.
The following classification of hereditary defects of the sense organs is based upon anatomical defects, which in turn destroy or pervert normal function:

I.   Eye.
    1.   Microphthalmus (including anophthalmus).
    2.   Megalophthalmus.
    3.   Atrophia Nervi Optici.
    4.   Retinitis Pigmentosa (including hemeralopia).
    5.   Color Blindness.
    6.   Glaucoma.
    7.   Cataract.
    8.   Ectopia Lentis.
    9.   Degeneration of the cornea.
  10.   Nystagmus.
  11.   Ophthalmoplegia (including ptosis and squint, which latter is also called strabismus or cross-eye).
  12.   Aniridia (including colobomba).

II.   Ear.

1.   Rudimentary development of tympanic cavity.
2.   Absence of tympanic membrane.
3.   Absence of ossicles.
4.   Absence of lanima spiralis.
5.   Displacement or Reissner’s membrane.
6.   Mucus vegetation of connective tissues.
7.   Absence of organ of corti.
8.   Too few ganglionic cells in spiral canal.
9.   Too few nerve fibres in modiolus.
10.   Atrophy or failure of auditory nerve.
11.   Ankylosis of ossicles.
12.   Obliteration of tympanic cavity by bony exostosis, mucus or connective tissue.
13.   Formation of bone in tympanic cavity.
14.   Vestibular windows filled with bone or connective tissue.
15.   Formation of bone or connective tissue in aqueductus
16.   Atresia by bone or connective tissue of external canal.  cochlea.

III.  Defects in the organs of taste, smell and touch are less clearly defined than those of sight and hearing, because doubtless of their less specialized constitution.

Each of these more generalized senses, however, appears to be affected with a diminution of sensitivity and in others with a hyper-sensitive functioning. In still others there appears to be a perversion of a lack of trueness in their functioning, however, and in what manner such variations are hereditary has not yet been made clear by pedigree studies.

Many individuals belonging personally to the socially unfit classes are not cacogenic because their conditions have been caused primarily by extrinsic agencies rather than by innate heredity. Thus, with the blind, a large percentage—from 20 per cent. to 40 per cent.—are known to have lost their sight by the easily preventableophthalmia neonatorum.Many individual persons legally counted insane are so, not because of heredity, but because of some extraordinary harshness of circumstance.

It is known beyond dispute that many cases of mental defects and physical deformities are caused almost entirely by disease or injury to persons of sound constitution. Such cases should be charged largely to the fault of environment and not to that of heredity. There is much personal and social salvage in them, and a solicitous social order can well afford to lend them personal aid and to help them rear their families. Such individuals, although both personally and socially inadequate, are, because of the persist-ency of ancestral germ-plasm and the falsity of the doctrine of the transmission of acquired traits, not cacogenic, and for the purposes of this study are not, therefore, to be considered as proper subjects for eugenical segregation, much less for sterilization.

Eugenics concerns only innate qualities. It is therefore the task, riot of eugenics, but of education, preventive medicine, mental hygiene, sex hygiene, movements for the conservation of vision, for the prevention of in-dustrial accidents, and for similar agencies to protect the members of society from socially inadequating forces, and for the medical and philanthropic sciences to treat individuals who, in spite of these preventative agencies, do fall the victim of crippling forces.



In a study of this sort it is proper carefully to consider each of the several different remedies which have been proposed or suggested or which appear as possibly efficacious for purging from the blood of the race the innately defective strains described in the previous chapter.  The following list is a catalog of such agencies.

1.   Life segregation (or segregation during the reproductive
2.   Sterilization.
3.   Restrictive marriage laws and customs.
4.   Eugenical education of the public and of prospective marriage period).  mates.
5.   Systems of matings purporting to remove defective traits.
6.   General environmental betterment.
7.   Polygamy.
8.   Euthanasia.
9.   Neo-Malthusianism.
10.   Laissez-faire.

Which of these remedies shall be applied? Shall one, two, or several or all be made to operate? What are the limitations and possibilities of each remedy? Shall one class of the socially unfit be treated with one remedy and another with a different one? Shall the specifically selected remedy be applied to the class or to the individual? What are the principles and limits of compromise between conservation and elimination in cases of individuals bearing a germ-plasm with a mixture of the determiners for both defective and sterling traits? What are the criteria for the identification of individuals bearing defective germ-plasm? What can be hoped from the application of some definite elimination program? What practical difficulties stand in the way?  How can they be overcome? These and other questions arise. It is therefore, the purpose of this investigation to study in the light of first-hand knowledge these problems, and to present the results of its work to the public in order to aid in some degree society’s efforts to work out a practicable program for effecting the desired ends.

The following studies of this committee appear to justify the following attitudes respectively toward each of the several proposed or suggested remedies:

(1.)Life segregation(or segregation during the reproductive period).

This remedy must, in the opinion of the committee, be the principal agent used by society in cutting off its supply of defectives.  Defectives must be, and with continually finer discrimination are being, segregated from the general mass of society; and it will require but little modification from the present custodial systems in effecting the eugenical end as well as protecting the immediate present-day society from the socially inadequate individual, and administering to the latter’s most pressing needs.

(2)  Sterilization.

Among  the  students  of  the  eugenical  status and movement  of mankind  there  is  a  wide  range  of  opinion  as  to  the extremity  to  which  society  itself  should  go  in  applying  sterilization, and  concerning  the  part  this  remedy  should  play  in  relation  to  other remedial agencies.  It would be  possible  theoretically  to  sterilize  wholesale those individuals thought to carry defective hereditary traits, and thus at one fell stroke cut off practically all of the cacogenic varieties of the race. On the other hand, belief in the efficiency of natural selection under existing social conditions is held by some. Between these two extremes what effective and practicable working basis can be found?

In the program proposed by the committee sterilization is advocated only as supporting the more important feature of segregation when the latter agency fails to function eugenically. The relation between these two agencies is automatic, for it is proposed to sterilize only those individuals who, by due process of law, have been declared socially inadequate and have been committed to State custody, and are known to possess cacogenic potentialities. The committee has assumed that society must, at all hazards, protect its breeding stock, and it advocates sterilization only as supplementary to the segregation feature of the program, which is equally effective eugenically, and more effective socially.

(3) Restrictive marriage laws and customs will have but little effect upon the socially inadequate classes. This is amply demonstrated by Davenport in Bulletin Number Nine of the Eugenics Record Office: “State Laws Limiting Marriage Selection Examined in the Light of Eugenics.” For persons of sound mind and morals, but suffering from severe hereditary handicap, these remedies will be efficacious; but individuals are given the designation “socially inadequate’’ because, among other reasons, they are not amenable to law and custom. 

(4)The eugenic education of the public and of prospective marriage mates must become an active force in American social life, else no eugenics program looking ultimately toward cutting off the supply of defectives or favoring fortunate marriages and high fecundity among the favored classes can be carried out. Individuals possessed of a fine mentality and high moral sense are amenable to law and custom and, in a large measure, govern their conduct in consonance with the ad-vance of scientific knowledge. The basis of progress is the growth and diffusion of knowledge. Faith in the development of the eugenics program is based upon faith in this principle.  For certain classes of individuals with hereditary defects, who withal are educable and are susceptible to social influences, eugenical education rather than compulsory segregation or sterilization appears to be the proper method for society to employ in cutting off their lines of descent. As an illustration of this the following is quoted from an
address delivered by Dr. Alexander Graham Bell to the deaf-mute members of the Literary Society of Kendall Green, Washington, D. C., March 6, 1891:

    I think, however, that it is the duty of every good man and every good woman to remember that children follow marriage, and I am sure that there is no one among the deaf who desires to have his affliction handed down to his children. You all know that I have devoted considerable study and thought to the subject of the inheritance of deafness, and if you will put away prejudice out of your minds, and take up my researches relating to the deaf, you will find something that may be of value to you all.
    We all know that some of the deaf have deaf children—not all, not even the majority—but some, a comparatively small number. In the vast majority of cases there are no deaf offspring, but in the remaining cases the proportion of offspring born deaf is very large, so large as to cause alarm to thoughtful minds.  Will it not be of interest and importance to you to find out why these few have deaf offspring? It may not be of much importance to you to inquire whether by and by, in a hundred years or so, we may have a deaf variety of the human race. That is a matter of great interest to scientific men, but not of special value to you. What you want to know and what you are interested in is this: are you yourself liable to have deaf offspring? Now, one value in my researches that you will find is this: that you can gain information which will assure you that you may increase your liability to have deaf offspring or diminish it, accord-ing to the way in which you marry.

He then quoted statistics which he had gathered at great expenditure of time and effort concerning the outcome of marriages among congenitally deaf persons, and continued:

    Persons who are reported deaf from birth, as a class, exhibit a tendency to transmit the defect; and yet when we come to individual cases we cannot decide with absolute certainty that any one was born deaf. Some who are reported deaf from birth probably lost hearing in infancy; others reported deaf in infancy were probably born deaf.For educational purposes the distinction may be immaterial, but, in the study of inheritance, it makes all the difference in the world whether the deafness occurred before or after birth.Now, in my researches, I think I have found a surer and more safe guide for those cases that are liable to transmit the defect.

    The new guide that I would give you is this: Look at the family rather than at the individual.You will find in certain families that one child is deaf and the rest hearing, the ancestors and other relatives also being free from deafness. This is what is known as a “sporadic” case of deafness—deafness which affects one only in a family. * * * The statistics collated by me (Memoir, p. 25) indicate that 816 marriages of deaf-mutes produce 82 deaf children.  In other words, every 100 marriages are productive of 10 deaf children. That is a result independent of the cause of deafness—an average of all cases considered. * * * Now, the point that I would impress upon you all is the significance of family deafness. I would have you remember that all the members of a family in which there are a number of deaf-mutes have a liability to produce deaf off-spring, the hearing members of the family as well as the deaf members.  This, I think, is the explanation of the curious fact that the congenitally deaf pupils of the Hartford Institution who married hearing persons had a larger percentage of deaf children than those who married deaf-mutes. It is probable that many of the hearing persons they married had brothers or sisters who were born deaf.

Of course, if you yourself were born deaf, or have deaf relatives, it is perfectly possible that in any event some of your children may be deaf.

Not only those concerned with the education and welfare of the deaf, but also the advisors and teachers of the blind are discouraging cacogenic marriages. Such at least is the testimony of Dr. Campbell, of the Ohio State School for the Blind. That persons of even less than average intelligence are liable to bring unfortunately endowed children into the world is evidenced by the testimony given the committee by several men, five or six out of a total of thirty, who were cross-examined and who were sterilized in the Jeffersonville (Indiana) Reformatory.

They expressed their satisfaction with their sterile condition, and said in substance that they were glad that they would not curse the world with “criminal children.”  The following extracts from letters written by intelligent persons demonstrates the fact that such persons are susceptible to eugenic education:
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"For the first years of [Ludwig von] Mises’s life in the United States...he was almost totally dependent on annual research grants from the Rockefeller Foundation.” -- Richard M. Ebeling
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