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October 8, 1898


JAMA. 1898;XXXI(15):864. doi:10.1001/jama.1898.02450150050005

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It comes, from time to time, within the editorial scope of the Journal to notice propositions from medical sources to advance the public welfare by legislative or other limitations of the liberty or capacity of the individual to reproduce his species. Sometimes it is in the form of a proposal to castrate criminals, sometimes in that of proposed or attempted legislation against the marriage of epileptics or other defectives, and it is not very long since, if we remember correctly, that a bill was before a certain State legislature to have appointed a sort of board of health to pass on the physical and mental—and we trust also the moral-condition of all candidates for marriage. A similar proposition was, it is believed, also offered in France, but went no further than the medical, and probably some of the secular, journals; the conditions there at the present time exciting more anxiety

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