by Ana McKenzie
There were glimmers of hope earlier this year for victims of North Carolina's forced sterilization programs of the early to mid-20th century. The General Assembly had finally decided to give money - $50,000 - to each of the 1,300 to 1,800 victims who were still alive.
But on Wednesday, the assembly regressed to uglier times when it didn't provide the funding for compensation in its budget. The House had approved the compensation, however it failed after Republican Senators questioned whether it was the right time, considering the state's weak budget. House Speak Thom Tillis, a Republican, told reporters he considered it a personal failure.
According to the Los Angeles Times:
In a 1950 pamphlet, the Human Betterment League of North Carolina said the board was protecting "the children of future generations and the community at large," adding that "you wouldn't expect a moron to run a train or a feeble-minded woman to teach school.''
Nearly 85% of those sterilized were women or girls, some as young as 10.
I say we sterilize the wives and children of the senators who fought against compensation. I bet they'll change their minds.