Pro-life leader warns that the burden of pensions and healthcare costs will mean more people must die.
In his book Don’t Trust Anyone Over 30: A History of the Baby Boom, Howard Smead called the boomers “the most egocentric generation in the history of mankind.” From hippies to yuppies, from war protesters to corporate lobbyists, the sheer number of baby boomers – generally defined as those born between 1947 and 1966 – left a kaleidoscope of indelible marks on society. Looking back, it sometimes seems that they had virtually no regard for anything beyond the moment they were living in.
One decision made by the baby boom generation over 30 years ago set in motion a chain of events that now threatens the health and well-being of millions of people. The infamous 1973 Roe v. Wade decision took place at a time when the bulk of the boomers had reached voting age. How many of them at the time thought of the fallout they would be facing three decades later?
“Since 1973, we have killed off roughly 25 per cent of our population through abortion,” Mark Crutcher, president of Life Dynamics, told The Interim. “What’s that going to do to the nation’s social security system?”
Crutcher explained that the U.S. social security system was set up like a giant, legalized pyramid scheme – similar in structure to the Canada Pension Plan. Through taxes, working people pay into the system and the money is given to recipients as needed. In 1936, when the social security system was created, more than 30 workers paid into the system for every one person receiving benefits. Currently, that ratio sits at just over two to one.
“We’ve killed off (through abortion) the people that were supposed to pay for social security,” Crutcher said. “When the social security system was created, it was created on the premise that there would always be a growing population base. The retirement age was set at 62, because that was the average age that people lived to. Social security was designed to take care of people who lived longer than the average person. Now, the average age is about 77. If a person lives to 77 after retiring at 62, you’re looking at the average person being on social security for 15 years. For every year that you add to the lifespan of the American people without upping the age at which they get social security, you take an additional $3 billion out of social security every year.”
Adjusting for the population base, the outlook for the Canada Pension Plan looks similarly dire.
Crutcher explained that when the pyramid begins to collapse, the decisions made by boomers on the abortion issue may come back to haunt them.
“We can kill you if you’re unhealthy,” is what Crutcher says we’ve told a generation of unborn. “We can kill you if you’re too expensive. We can kill you if you’re inconvenient. I’ve listened to these arguments for 30 years. The survivors of the generation that we killed off will be making decisions about us. How long is it before that generation says to the baby boomers what the baby boomers said to them?”
Alex Schadenberg, executive director of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition, told The Interim that although Crutcher’s analysis may be cold, it is “a very logical way to look at it.”
“Because we legalized abortion we have a birth dearth,” he explained. “We’ve got too many elderly people and too few young people. It comes back to haunt us, because they’re saying it costs too much to provide healthcare for the elderly. We’ve killed off the babies enough so that we don’t have a sufficient tax base.”
Schadenberg said that, like abortion, the ideas of euthanasia and assisted suicide will be sold to the public under the euphemism of “choice.”
“It’s all based on our simple emotional philosophy,” he explained. “I call it an ’emotional philosophy’ because it really doesn’t make sense. It’s the whole concept of ‘my body, my choice.'”
But, Schadenberg warned, “choice” may have little to do with the “decision” to die.
“There’s a pressure from society to end their lives,” he said of people receiving chronic medical care.
“People get to a point where they start to feel like they have no other choice. The options are to live in a mode where people are not going to provide you the proper care, or receive an earlier death. In nursing homes in the Netherlands, it’s exactly what’s going on. People are being euthanized, and they feel they have no other choice.”
As social services are strained under the weight of an aging population, even the pretext of choice may be removed. Depleting resources may force decisions to be built into the system.
“Let’s say someone comes in at 60 years old and they’ve had a stroke or heart attack,” Crutcher postulated. “The system decides that the patient has a low chance of surviving for a year, so the system says we’re going to withhold care. If you withhold care, the patient certainly doesn’t live a year, and the system is seen as right. The system takes care of itself.”
These scenarios have been discussed for decades, yet there seems to be no political will to change the path. No politician wants to risk his career by being the one who raises taxes to crushing levels or cuts services to the bone. While immigration policies have been created in part to shore up the tax base, Schadenberg said that increasing the number of new citizens through immigration is not enough to avert a crisis.
“Statistics in Canada show that even if we were to bring in 250,000 immigrants a year from now on, that’s not enough to replace the birth dearth that we’ve created,” he explained. “Of those 250,000 immigrants, not all of them are children, obviously. People come to Canada, then they sponsor their brothers, their sisters, their parents. You’re not actually dealing with your population disparity problem. The problem cannot be solved that way. It has to be solved the natural way: by increasing the birth rate.”