Would You Take a Vaccine Based on Mengele’s Nazi Experiments? Should the Government Force You?
During World War II, Dr. Josef Mengele conducted hideous experiments on living human beings. Much of what he engaged in was pseudoscience, tainted by Nazi mysticism and crackpot racial theories. I won’t go into their lurid, gruesome cruelty, though you can read about that here. However, some of the heartless experiments yielded potentially valuable data. (If you’re willing to torture human beings to death, you might well learn things you can’t from experiments on lab rats.)
Should scientists with no Nazi ties, who deplored Mengele’s ethics, examine that research to find potential cures or vaccines?
If Nazi Research Might Save Some Lives, Should We Use It?
That question arose after the Nuremburg trials. (Mengele had escaped to South America, to carry on his calling as an abortionist.) And it was answered almost universally: No. Revulsion at the fate of Mengele’s victims, and the corruption of the scientific and medical establishments in Germany, made that decision easy.
So what about experiments and medicines based on the use of aborted babies? Pseudo-science once dehumanized Jews, Slavs and Gypsies. Now it dehumanizes every child in the womb. Medical schools long ago rewrote the ancient Hippocratic Oath, to remove the promise not to cause abortions or euthanize patients.
The Vice President of the United States, Kamala Harris, helped shore up her fundraising by trying to imprison pro-life journalists. Their crime? Exposing the lucrative business Harris campaign donor Planned Parenthood does in fetal body parts.
Every COVID Vaccine on the Market Comes from Dead Babies
Keep all this in mind as you consider the facts. Every currently available COVID vaccine was produced with some help from experiments on cell lines from aborted human beings. Some vaccines are worse than others (Johnson & Johnson’s is the most shameless). But all of them trace back to an aborted baby. They are in this sense like products made using Nazi research from the Holocaust.
And now we’re facing calls by governments worldwide to make the COVID vaccine mandatory. To create “vaccine passports” as the condition for working, traveling, or perhaps even keeping custody of one’s children. Shockingly for Catholics, some Catholic groups, including the pope, seem to wave off objections to these tainted, experimental vaccines. But we’ve learned in the past few years not to take the pope’s casual words as final — not when he contradicts his predecessors, historic Church teaching, or the words of Scripture itself.
The US Catholic bishops are caught in a bind. On the one hand, there’s strong Church teaching that protects conscience, and warns against the casual use of such vaccines. on the other, there’s the enormous pressure of government and media. There’s also the real concern that indiscriminate “anti-vaxxers” are harming people. Key theological authorities in Rome are telling the bishops to roll over. So most of them have, a fact I satirized in this piece at Church Militant: “US Bishops Discourage Catholics from Eating Human Flesh.”
Should we roll over too?
The Cannibalism Exception
There’s a case to be made that to directly save your own life, you might accept (under protest) a Nazi-research-tainted medicine. If you were in direct danger of death, and it offered the only hope. Just so after a plane crash, some of the survivors might be forced to eat the remains of those who died. But should you or I accept a cure for a deadly disease, if it traced back to Mengele’s lab notes? I can’t say dogmatically that it would be a sin. But I think it would be better, more human, and more Christian to say “No,” and die rather than benefit from the murder of your fellow human beings.
Let’s say you are in a group at a high, high risk of death should you catch COVID. Then taking any of these vaccines (including even Johnson & Johnson’s) could be barely acceptable. Something you prayed and maybe wept about beforehand, and did some pro-life work to atone for.
Damned Through the Eye of a Loophole
Can we turn this tiny loophole in the moral law into an open floodgate? Is it sane to let governments force every single citizen in their countries to accept the COVID vaccine? (The pretext being that it might save somebody else’s life at some point.) Will we just let COVID serve as the excuse for bulldozing every individual liberty, every claim of personal conscience?
Some pro-life scholars and activists are saying “No.” I just signed an open letter raising all these questions. It warns against
what appears to be a growing consensus among Catholic ethicists that vaccines derived from aborted fetal tissue are not only morally permissible (licit), but also (nearly) morally obligatory for the sake of the common good.
Examples include, among others, this statement organized by EPPC, the steady position of the Catholic Health Association (CHA), and a December statement of the USCCB which says that receiving the (abortion-tainted) COVID-19 vaccine “should be considered…part of our moral responsibility for the common good.”
These statements are troubling to us, and seem to run afoul of our rights of conscience to refuse such vaccines, clearly defended by the [Catholic] Church, in Dignitas Personae (CDF 2008) and Note on the morality of using some Covid-19 vaccines (CDF 2020). We now fear the circling of the wagons around abortion-tainted vaccines, advanced by powerful voices which seem ready to silence our moral intuitions.
Please go read the whole statement and pray for discernment on this issue.
The Tyranny Thing
Whatever you think of your own situation, and how great a threat COVID personally poses to you, any lover of liberty ought to get outraged at the idea that the State — and the globalist entities strong-arming states — will use its bayonets and prisons to force a needle into your arm or your kids’ arms against your conscience.
Then the abortionists of this world, the Mengeles, really would have won.
John Zmirak is a senior editor at The Stream, and author or co-author of ten books, including The Politically Incorrect Guide to Immigration and The Politically Incorrect Guide to Catholicism. He is co-author with Jason Jones of “God, Guns, & the Government.”