Mike Huckabee has claimed that allowing doctors to remove life-support from a brain-dead teenager in California will lead to the establishment of Nazi-style concentration camps and forced abortions like those seen in China.
13-year old Jahi McMath was declared brain-dead last month after what should have been a routine operation on her tonsils. Doctors have told her family that she technically died several weeks ago. She remains on life-support and has been released to the custody of her mother as of this morning.
Now Huckabee (an ordained pastor) has weighed in on the issue, despite admitting that he has no medical knowledge and does not fully understand McMath’s condition. However this has not stopped him making a hysterical claim about the consequences of allowing McMath’s life support to be removed.
Huckabee told his viewers:
[box type=”shadow”]”Every life has value and worth. There is no such person who is disposable. . . The road that starts that way in deciding that some lives have less value and are unworthy of protection, that leads to a culture that tolerates the undeserved killing of over 55 million unborn children in this country. It leads to China’s birth policy. . . It’s also that culture that allowed the Nazis to hideously justify the savage slaughter of millions of Jews.”[/box]
The Nazi program of extermination was based on pseudo-scientific claims, myths of race and blood purity and social-Darwinism. The invocation of the Holocaust has been used by the reactionary right to attack the Affordable Care Act, stem-cell research and abortion. Now it is being used to invade the privacy of a family going through an unimaginable scenario. These glib and ridiculous claims are an insult to the memories of the millions of people who perished in the gas chambers of Auschwitz and Treblinka, and should not be used to advocate avowedly religious goals. After all, Christianity has a very bad history and an even worse conscience when it comes to its relationship with Nazism and the Holocaust.
It is important to remember that no one at any point asked for the former governor to comment on this case. McMath is, fortunately, not suffering anymore. However, she is merely existing at this point; she is not living. As far as anyone knows, McMath’s family have not publicly contemplated removing her life-support. If they do, it should be an entirely private and family affair, with no outside interference. This is a medical issue, not a theological one.