Aborting Hitler

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Someone once asked me whether I would abort Adolf Hitler if I knew in advance he would try to launch a Holocaust against millions of Jews. I said I would not. That is because aborting Hitler would not have prevented the Holocaust. It would have justified it. The killing of millions of innocents does not begin with the killing of one innocent. It begins with the idea that in the larger scheme of things it is permissible to kill one innocent person.

The movie Judgment in Nuremburg (1961) shows that, even in Hollywood, Americans once appreciated this important principle. The movie is three hours long. But one only needs to watch the last ten minutes of the movie in order to see how far we have fallen in just a half-century.

For those who do not remember the end of the movie, Spencer Tracy plays an American judge who sentences former Nazis for their involvement in the Holocaust. One Nazi judge who sentenced innocents to death was himself sentenced to life in prison. As the sentence is read, he stares off in disbelief. He initially believes he is innocent because he was simply following the law. He later realizes his life sentence was just.

Only a couple of days after he is sentenced, the former Nazi judge requests that the American judge visit him in his jail cell. As he faces the man who sentenced him, he makes an odd request: he asks him to keep his personal memoirs – adding that they must be placed in the hands of a man who can be trusted. It is then that he declares the sentence passed upon him was just.

After pausing for a moment, the condemned Nazi judge says of the millions of dead Jews, “Those millions of people. I never knew it would come to that.” Spencer Tracy, playing the American judge, responds with one of the most profound lines of his storied acting career saying, “It came to that the first time you sentenced a man to death you knew to be innocent.”

That has been the story of the American Holocaust as well. It began in 1966 in my native state of Mississippi. Just two years after I was born, a law was passed that made it legal to abort in the case of rape or incest. But then, the very next year, Colorado passed legislation allowing abortion in cases of rape, incest, or threat to the health of the mother.

Then the floodgates were opened. By the end of the year, several states were pushing legislation modeled after the Colorado statute. Within just six years, abortion for mere convenience was not just permitted by several states. It was enshrined as a fundamental constitutional right.

Some have declared that they will not rest until Roe v. Wade is overturned. Others say that is too lofty a goal. I disagree. I believe it is too shortsighted. We must reach further back if we want to reverse our moral free fall. Pre-1973 thinking is not enough. We must go back to the time when no state authorized the killing of innocents – a time when only the rapist, not the product of rape, was eligible for a sentence of death.

Ideas have consequences. And so do exceptions. One of the consequences of embracing an evil exception is that it hardens our hearts and clouds our thinking in advance of our consideration of other exceptions. Eventually we come to a point where we cannot imagine life without that initial exception.

It is fitting that it all began in Mississippi. We have a legacy of executing innocents by denying their personhood. It happened with slavery. It happened again with abortion. Now we have learned to justify our own Holocaust. We didn’t need Hitler after all.

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Mike S. Adams was born in Columbus, Mississippi on October 30, 1964. While a student at Clear Lake High School in Houston, TX, his team won the state 5A soccer championship. Mike Adams graduated from C.L.H.S. in 1983 with a 1.8 GPA. Mike Adams was ranked 734 among a class of 740, largely as a result of flunking English all four years of high school. After obtaining an Associate's degree in psychology from San Jacinto College, Mike Adams moved on to Mississippi State University where he joined the Sigma Chi Fraternity. While living in the fraternity house, his GPA rose to 3.4, allowing him to finish his B.A., and then to pursue a Master's in Psychology. In 1990, Mike Adams turned down a chance to pursue a PhD in psychology from the University of Georgia, opting instead to remain at Mississippi State to study Sociology/Criminology. This decision was made entirely on the basis of his reluctance to quit his night job as member of a musical duo. Playing music in bars and at fraternity parties and weddings financed his education. Mike Adams also played for free beer. . Upon getting his doctorate in 1993, Adams, then an atheist and a Democrat, was hired by UNC-Wilmington to teach in the criminal justice program. A few years later, Adams abandoned his atheism and also became a Republican. He also nearly abandoned teaching when he took a one-year leave of absence to study law at UNC-Chapel Hill in 1998. After returning to teach at UNC-Wilmington, Adams won the Faculty Member of the Year award (issued by the Office of the Dean of Students) for the second time in 2000. . After his involvement in a well publicized free speech controversy in the wake of the 911 terror attacks, Adams became a vocal critic of the diversity movement in academia. After making appearances on shows like Hannity and Colmes, the O'Reilly Factor, and Scarborough Country, Adams was asked to write a column for Townhall.com. . Today Mike Adams enjoys the privilege of expressing himself both as a teacher and a writer. Mike Adams is also an avid hunter and reader of classic literature. Mike Adams published his first book, Welcome to the Ivory Tower of Babel, in 2004. His second book, Feminists Say the Darndest Things: A Politically Incorrect Professor Confronts "Womyn" On Campus, was published in 2008.