Writing at National Review Online, Wesley Smith has a list of the top ten bioethical stories of the past decade and it isn’t all bad news. Euthanasia was legalized in Washington state, but generally Americans are more pro-life. There is the growth of biological colonialism (foreign organ tissue market for transplants) but also adult stem cell therapy breakthroughs. Smith’s top bioethical story of the decade was the murder of Terri Schiavo, which was about much more than the particulars of a case of an ex-husband insisting that his ex-wife be dehydrated to death, as awful as that is. Smith says because a “society is judged by the way it treats its most vulnerable citizens,” the “Schiavo case was far more than a personal and family tragedy: It was a modern-day passion play from which we are still reeling.” Still, I think the top bioethical story of the decade is the one Wesley Smith opens with: “The ascendance of an anti-human environmentalism.” He explains:
Deep ecology, the most radical expression of environmentalism, maintains that human beings are the world’s enemy — the AIDS of the Earth, as one advocate put it — and that saving the planet will require depopulating the Earth to under 1 billion. It is easy to dismiss such misanthropy as the radical fringe. Alas, during the last decade, vocal and unapologetic support for draconian depopulation has become a part of the environmental mainstream, and is now almost universal within the global-warming movement. China’s one-child policy is not considered anathema by many global-warming alarmists, and is even extolled by influential leaders. The head of the U.K. Green party, Jonathon Porritt, who chairs the U.K. government’s Sustainable Development Commission, said that curbing population growth through contraception and abortion must be at the heart of policies to fight global warming. Radical environmentalism appears to have morphed into anti-humanism, the result of which could be a new impetus for eugenics and radical population control.
Next week, we’ll put our January editorial on the anti-human life agenda that is at the heart of environmentalism online.