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The Land of Windmills and Murder
by Thomas A. Droleskey
February 6, 2001

The Netherlands has replaced Germany as the world’s leading laboratory for social engineering. The recent decision of the Dutch to “legalize” the killing of the elderly and the infirm and the chronically ill is simply the logical result of a set of forces that the Netherlands became home to following the defeat of Adolf Hitler’s Third Reich in May 1945.

The unification of the Germanic states into a single country as a result of Prussia’s victory in the Franco-Prussian War in 1871 ushered in the triumph of social engineering in northern Europe’s industrial and economic giant. Masterminded by Otto von Bismarck, the “Iron Chancellor,” the social engineering that began in Germany during the Kulturkampf sought to create a brave new world where people would become more and more dependent upon the beneficence of the state. Bismarck knew that one of the ways to solidify political power was to create a sense of dependence on the part of the citizenry, who would become convinced that it was impossible for them to live their lives without the direction and largesse of government bureaucrats.

Bismarck’s Kulturkampf, which started off as a direct assault upon the Catholic Church (viewed by Bismarck as an obstacle to the social and economic advancement of human society), occurred at a time when two complementary schools of thought were coming to the fore: Darwinian evolutionism and the historical-critical method of Scriptural exegesis. The latter was designed by Protestant Scripture scholars in Germany as a means of “demythologizing” Scripture, a goal that dovetailed neatly with the agendas both of the Darwinians and of Hegelian philosophers who were intent on creating the illusion of change in the very nature of God Himself. The old way of religion had to yield to the new ways of progress and social advancement. And that social advancement would entail, among other things, the discarding of those who were economically unproductive and thus relatively useless for the life of society.

Bismarck was not as aggressive as his successors in Germany would be during the period of the Weimar Republic (1919-1933). However, he laid the groundwork for the sterilization and euthanasia policies that would be the hallmarks of both Weimar and the Third Reich. One of Bismarck’s principal legacies was the establishment of the modern welfare state, paving the way not only for the Weimar democrats and Hitler but also for V.I. Lenin and Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Social Security was the crown jewel of Bismarck’s welfare state. For Bismarck desired to create a world where grown children believed that they were relieved of the natural-law responsibility to care for their elderly parents when they became incapable of caring for themselves. He wanted to rally the elderly to his side by making it appear as though he was their friend — and he wanted to do the same with the young, convincing them that he had made it possible for them to live a more comfortable life materially by relieving them of the “burden” of providing for their parents (never mind the nasty little fact that confiscatory taxes were used to pay for Social Security). Thus, Bismarck sought to pit generations against each other in preparation for the day when those who were retired could be deemed useless to society and thus worthy of liquidation. Bismarck relied upon the German traits of obedience to authority as the means by which he could convince the public that he, their chancellor, knew best.

Social scientists and natural scientists had a field day in Germany during the Weimar Republic. Yes, democratic Germany was home to scores of biological and eugenic experimentations. Science is a tool given us by God to use as a means of assisting the legitimate development of human progress in the natural world. Absent the direction provided it by the true Church, however, science can become a terrible weapon of destruction and of maniacal social and biological engineering. Thus, the fuller development in the Third Reich of the monstrous policies pursued during the Weimar Republic was quite logical. In 1939, the German populace quite docilely accepted Hitler’s implementation of the wholesale extermination of the retarded and infirm. Germans had become used to the principle that the state knew best. Only Clemens von Galen, the Bishop of Munster, had the courage to speak out publicly against Hitler’s eugenics policies.

(Obviously, Lenin and Stalin were playing their own monstrous games in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. Psychiatry there became a tool of political reprogramming and raw terror. Social engineering is the very foundation of Marxism’s own brave new world. And the fact that the Bolsheviks had plenty of defenders in the West helps explain the triumph of the spirit of Bolshevism in almost every country in Western Europe, as well as in Canada and the United States.)

In the West, social engineering fell into a bit of disrepute in the wake of the Nuremberg Trials that followed World War II. However, in the Netherlands the groundwork was quietly being laid for a recrudescence of the utilitarianism that was the essence of the Weimar Republic and the Third Reich. The social engineers and eugenicists had taken over the Dutch universities and hospitals and laboratories. The positivists held sway in the courts and in the Staaten, the Dutch national legislature. And Modernists populated much of the Dutch Catholic hierarchy. Indeed, Modernist Dutch theologians even produced a best-selling catechism that was essentially a defense of the very trends developing in the Netherlands in the 1960s.

In that decade, the Netherlands became a playground for hallucinogenic drug use and promiscuity. It was one of the first nations in Europe to embrace every single bit of the sodomite agenda. And it is so radically pro-abortion that it is now the de facto policy in the Netherlands to permit parents to euthanize their newborn child up to a year after his birth, thus giving them from the moment of fertilization to one year after birth to take a crack at the fruit of their conjugal love. And it has been the de facto policy of the Dutch for some time to permit physicians to dispatch patients who are deemed to have outlived their usefulness in society (too old, too sick, too costly to maintain). What was once de facto is now de jure. Although no doctors in the Netherlands have been prosecuted for doing what was once technically illegal, they can now kill their patients with legal impunity.

As I have noted on a number of occasions, arguing against euthanasia on purely natural terms is no defense against the power of sentimentality to trump rational thought. A culture of well-being seeks to anesthetize pain and all other unpleasant realities. Why should a person suffer when the truth of redemptive suffering is rejected as either fantastic or as just simply unrealistic in our modern world? Those who believe that it is possible to combat the “mercy killers” with naturalistic arguments are as delusional as those who believe that a person who supports one abortion as a matter of principle is a defender of the sanctity of innocent human life.

Human suffering is one of the many consequences of Original Sin. Indeed, physical suffering and death are two of the very tangible consequences of Original Sin, as well as of our own actual sins. It is only the Catholic Faith that teaches the full truth concerning human suffering. And it is a rejection of the Catholic teaching on human suffering that has permitted sentimentality to triumph so mightily in the world, even among many Catholics who attend Mass every Sunday.

The Church teaches us that no suffering is beyond our capacity to bear by means of the graces won for us by the shedding of our Lord’s Most Precious Blood on Calvary. Further, the Church teaches us that no human suffering — no matter how intense — is the equal of the pain that just one of our venial sins imposed upon our Lord in His Sacred Humanity on the wood of the Holy Cross. And she teaches us that our patient endurance of the sufferings we experience in our lifetimes can be the means by which we help the Poor Souls in Purgatory make satisfaction for the debt we owe as a result of our forgiven sins (and our general attachment to sin), and the means by which we can give exemplary witness to the world of the fact that we unite our sufferings with those of our Blessed Lord. Indeed, our patient endurance of suffering is one of the ways we prove our love for our Lord. Knowing that our Lord never permits us to endure any suffering beyond our capacity to endure equips us with the knowledge that the more suffering we are sent, the more we receive a sign of His love for us, that He expects us to do great things for Him and His Church by becoming co-redeemers of the world with Him.

A rejection of those simple truths results in the tyranny of the social engineers and the bioethicists (who don’t practice true biology and are not very ethical). Why not kill “unwanted” babies? Why not kill those who suffer? Why not clone yourself? Why not conceive a child in order to kill it and use its body parts to aid someone with Parkinson’s Disease? Why can’t a woman who is sterile conceive a child by means of in vitro fertilization? Why can’t two people of the same gender who “love” one another get “married”? What’s wrong with surrogate motherhood? Why can’t we use genetics to pick the sort of child we want? The very people who reject the authority of the Church in those matters look to secular “experts” to provide them with guidance, ironically conferring on those pseudo-experts a spirit of infallibility that is rejected as belonging to the Successor of Saint Peter and the bishops who are in full communion with him.

The Netherlands goes first where other nations follow. That has been true both ecclesiastically and civilly. Look for Canada to follow the Dutch lead before too long. And the state of Oregon is already the de jure euthanasia pioneer in the United States. The actual de facto practice in most hospitals in most places in this country is pretty much the same as it has been in the Netherlands. Doctors are liberally dispatching people as a matter of routine, making decisions that certain people have simply outlived their usefulness. That is over and above the instances where poorly formed people (or their families) actually ask to be killed. No, there are all types of “mysterious” deaths in hospitals these days as doctors and Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs) play God and make cost-benefit analyses as to a person’s “worth.”

It is no accident that the Netherlands is one of the leaders in utilitarian social engineering. At one time under the control of Catholic Spain, the Netherlands, like some other nations of Europe, eventually fell under the sway of Lutheranism and Calvinism. The Netherlands has long been home to relativists. After all, an essential tenet of Protestantism is that a person is saved if he makes a confession of faith in our Lord with his lips and in his heart. Nothing else matters after that profession of faith is made. There is no room for a theology of redemptive suffering in such a belief system. Protestantism rejects Purgatory as un-Scriptural. It contends that we do not prove our faith by good works. And it rejects the simple truth that we gain merit for our good works, merit that can be applied to the Poor Souls in Purgatory and help make expiation for the debt we owe our own forgiven sins. Why not annihilate yourself when pain becomes too severe? A “loving” God would understand that, wouldn’t He?

There is only one weapon that can stop the advance of the brave new world that has been evolving since the time of the Renaissance and the Protestant Revolt: the Cross of the Divine Redeemer. When are we going to learn that we cannot fight the culture of death without the weapon that brought us the possibility of eternal life?

Our Lady, Mother of Mercy, pray for us.

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Copyright © 2001. All rights reserved.

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