Sun, 27 Mar 1994 17:26:35 -0600

I am currently working on a research project concerning Human Genetics
which I hope to integrate into courses I teach in Physical Anth.

Specifically I am looking at the modest, yet undeniable resurgence of
involuntary sterilization within US society as part of a new wave of
Eugenics. The project evolved in response to repeated student questions
concerning eugenics legislation here in Colorado in my Physical Anth
classes over the years.

When I finally began looking into the matter recently, I discovered,
to my surprise that:

1. there is legislation in tact (passed in 1975 and revised in 1985)
permitting for sterilization of persons in the state's (Colorado) mental
institutions on the approval of a district judge.

2. The legislation has been upheld by the State's Supreme Court.

3. There are on-going efforts now to extend the scope of involuntary
sterilization. In the past two sessions of the legislature eugenic
legislation has twice appears: last year, a bill was proposed that
would reward welfare mothers with a $100 payment in exchange for
accepting a tubal ligation. It failed. In this session (1994) a bill
is currently being considered which would reward prisoners with
up to ten days early release, in exchange for vasectomies, tubal
ligation. After rejecting an amendment which would have legitimized
mandatory castration of rapists, the House Committee involved, approved
the bill by an 8-2 vote.

In regards this discussion group I am looking for certain specific
information from folks out there in Internet-land:

A. Has comparable legislation been introduced recently elsewhere
in the USA, or is the Colorado legislature's interest in the subject
simply an anomaly? If you are aware of similar legislation in your
state (or any other) I would be grateful if you might information,
copies of bills, laws enacted any time in the past five years?

B. Is it legal in your state, country at present? What are the bill's
parameters. Have the laws been invoked where it is legal? If so
would it be possible to send me the laws involved.

C. If you have good source material that deals with the recent
phenomenon of involuntary sterilization (ie. since 1975) in the USA,
I would appreciate it. For those of you who might be interested, I
recommend Philip Reilly's The Surgical Solution: A History of
Involuntary Sterilization in the United States. (Johns Hopkins U.
Press, 1991).

D. Specifically concerning North Carolina: I have information
documenting an extensive eugenics program in the state between
1954-1975 (some 3500 involuntary sterilizations performed in that
period), but have lost track since. Does it continue? Under what
auspice? Is there any one in North Carolina that might be able
to update me on this?

E. Anything particularly good out there on the policies in China,
India concerning forced sterilization that any of you folks could

Rob Prince
Metro State College
Campus Box 28
P.O. Box 173362
Denver, CO 80217-3362