Boris Johnson has been urged to sack a new Downing Street adviser who once suggested enforcing the uptake of contraception to stop unplanned pregnancies “creating a permanent underclass”.
Andrew Sabisky was drafted in to Number 10 after the PM’s chief adviser Dominic Cummings called for “misfits and weirdos” to apply to advise the Government.
He reportedly once suggested that the benefits of a purported cognitive enhancer, which can prove fatal, are “probably worth a dead kid once a year”.
Writing on Mr Cummings’ website he said: “One way to get around the problems of unplanned pregnancies creating a permanent underclass would be to legally enforce universal uptake of long-term contraception at the onset of puberty.
“Vaccination laws give it a precedent, I would argue.”
Eugenics finds itself back on the agenda
It is quite remarkable, really, that in 2020 eugenics finds itself back on the political agenda in a supposedly forward-thinking, modern nation.
Ideas that led to the involuntary sterilisation of tens of thousands of people in the US in the late 19th and early 20th century are actually gaining credence among some political thinkers in the UK today.
These people are giving a “nod and a wink to the politics and ideology that led to the Holocaust,” Unite Against Fascism’s joint secretary Weyman Bennett told the Morning Star.
Labour MP David Lammy echoed his sentiment, saying on social media: “So when Dominic Cummings put out an advert for ‘weirdos’ to work in Number 10, it turns out he meant supporters of eugenics. Deeply sinister.”
But not only are they deeply sinister, they are also seriously flawed in their thinking.
Dr Adam Rutherford, author of How to Argue With a Racist, said the arguments are bereft of scientific literacy to the point of becoming “morally repugnant”.
Posting on Twitter, he said: “Sabisky and Cummings look bewitched by science without doing the legwork.
“Instead this resembles the marshalling of misunderstood or specious science into a political ideology.
“The history here is important, because this process is exactly what happened at the birth of scientific racism and the birth of eugenics.
“If Cummings wants some real scientific advice, he should ask scientists.”
But what of the people who are advising the Prime Minister?
The moral fibre of Cummings has become a constant theme since he rose to prominence and now he seems to be surrounding himself with people who hold similarly questionable views.
This wouldn’t be so much of a problem if unelected officials only played a minor role in government, but as SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford warned today, they are actually the real “power behind the throne”.
The recent cabinet reshuffle demonstrated the power of those within Johnson’s inner circle, and it is clear that the main prerogative is now protecting that power by surrounding the PM with yes men and women who are happy to do his bidding.
The fact that Number 10 stood rock solid by Sabisky this morning despite his comments on eugenics is a painful sign of what’s to come.