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Naturally, and quite understandably, people avoid discussing the dark periods of human history, specifically the inconceivable acts of dehumanization imposed on their fellow man.

Individuals struggle to understand, sometimes simply because they cannot fathom, how a person—and in some cases, an institution—can manipulate and devalue another human being or groups of people. Often, the standards by which those with the “authority” to determine the lack of worth of the individual or population are arbitrary and subjective.

All of this is relevant in a conversation over the eugenics movement of the United States, occurring in the early to mid-twentieth century.

When considering the eugenics movement’s prominence in the political and social culture of the United States for many decades, one important question may arise: are the underlying thought- processes of the eugenics movement fundamental to the United States and its values as a nation? To answer this question, an analysis of the three founding documents of the country must be undertaken: The Declaration of Independence, The Constitution of the United States, and The Gettysburg Address.



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