Laws calls for cash to sterilise

The Dom Post reports:

Wanganui Mayor says giving the “underclass” money to be sterilised will address our problem.

Critics last night labelled the suggestion “totalitarian”, “draconian” and “reprehensible”, and questioned his appropriateness as a city leader.

Mr Laws said the children of beneficiaries, drug addicts and criminals had little chance in life. He offered his observations after he was approached for comment on the death of two-year-old Wanganui boy Karl Perigo-Check, the son of a convicted murderer and gang member.

“If we gave $10,000 to certain people and said ‘we’ll voluntarily sterilise you’ then all of society would be better off. There’d be less dead children and less social problems.

It is a fact there are some people who are not fit to be parents. And when they do have more children, the kids get removed from them at birth. I’m not sure how many are in this category, but there are a few.

I doubt anyone sensible advocates compulsory . No state should ever have that power. Even the thought makes me shudder.

But if a parent has a history of child abuse (for example), should there be an incentive for him or her to get sterilised – such as a cash payment as Laws suggests?

Personally I don’t think it is a good idea. For one thing people can end up as parents, even if sterilised. They partner up with someone who had kids for example.

But also it is still pretty creepy to have our own version of China’s toasters for sterilisation policy. Now sure China was aimed at everyone – to keep overall population down. But I don’t think bribing our own citizens to get sterilised if a great innovation.

Also many sterilisations can be reversed anyway.

But Laws is right that something needs to be done. He hasn’t got the solution, but the status quo is not acceptable.

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