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Margaret Sanger, "Birth Control and Controlling the Unfit Notes," 1938.

Source: "Margaret Sanger Papers, Sophia Smith Collection Margaret Sanger Microfilm, Sophia Smith Collection S71:1050."

No final version of this text was found.

Bc has become the keynote of a New Social & racial responsibility. It is the consciousness of a New Individual responsibility not only for the children already born but for the welfare of children not yet conceived.

This attitude marks a new & superior sense in the history of mankind. It marks a new social era as being not only a health expedient but a Social principle which is intermingled & tied to the spiritual progress & advancement of the race & its future.

Its practice makes for a resistant race, maintaining initiatives & responsibility. Today 1/3 of the population are creating conditions for dependency killing initiatives & responsibility.

The only people who can afford larger families are those who can't support them.

Many good people are fearful of Communism & would depart from our shores all these with such political & social ideas but I say that the most revolutionary Communist is not as great an danger ↑enemy↓ to our nation as the fanatic who opposes all efforts to decrease the multiplication of the defectives criminal & unfit populations of this country.

Here is the real enemy. Insidious & powerful & dangerous &of Foreign extraction.

I wish they would take over & pay the cost of their ↑own↓ increasing hordes & maintain this large unfit population thus relieving the tax payers of increasingly heavy burdens.

Our politicians attack the communists & urge their deportation because they fear their ideas will destroy our form or system of government. But our system of gov’t can be maintained, changed, defended if we have a population of men & women able to with # an ↑the↓ intelligence to deal with it.

But with 85% of our population mentally under the age of a juvenile 14 years old, we can expect all the problems which a family expect parents face with their own adolescents.

But the real criminal to be feared is not the Communist or fascist or any other growth to interfere or change our cities or external life. It is the man or woman or group who encourage the increase of defectives & criminal breeding & prevents others from doing their civic duty to the state in attempting to curtail their increase.

Opponents of Bc are responsible for their dysgenic birth rate. 80% mental equipment of 14 year old juveniles. David Starr Jordan’s Princeton: 25,000,000 mediocre 15,000,000 intellectuals 90/130 under 14 130

Medical Professional’s duty should be extended beyond saving life of the individual today to preserving the health of the nation & future generations.

The most important task before our health & gov’t officials today is to find effectual means of controlling & limiting the propagation of the mentally unfit, including feebleminded, psychotic & unstable, mentally retarded individuals.

Infant mortality $800,000 to be requested

Over 2,000,000 born annually

75,000 stillborn

69,000 die first month

Studies 1,000,000 no nursing care after birth. 1/4 million have no Dr. Maternal & infant deaths 147,000 a year. Maternal death 12,500 from child birth. 1/2 to 3/4 could have been saved. D.C. Maternal deaths higher than England & Wales-5.7-3.7 (1937) lowest on record in England.


13,000,000 Children are families on relief 10,000,000 children are handicapped mentally or physically. 65% of births (1937) came from families on relief or income less than $1,000 a year.

Only those can afford large families who can't support them.

HG Wells prophecy mind of mass slavery grows. Prolific powers of increase-chaos.

(1938) Over 500,000 persons are in hospitals (1928) for mentally diseases about 50,000 beings are on parole while 150,000 patients are admitted or readmitted to these institutions every year. 75,000 are in institutes for the feebleminded & epileptic while another 900,000 mental defectives are outside institutional care. (Creating problems & having babies) $150,000,000 of public funds over 1/4 of all health & medical services by the gov’t are expended annually for their maintenance.

Over 2,000,000 births Each year. 75,000 infants still borne 69,000 “” die first month. 12,500 women die from causes due to birth or pregnancy & T.B. heart or kidney disease leaving 35,000 children left motherless for institutions or charitable causes. Very little decline in the last 20 years in the maternal death rate in USA.

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