The first time I heard the term ‘triage’ was during the 1974 famine in Ethiopia when overfed professors at Harvard proposed it as a solution to the famine. They publicly & unabashedly claimed the most merciful solution to the famine was to let hundreds of thousands starve to death since their prospects for life were grim if they survived. I gave a forum on the theory as applied to the famine & recall attempting to shred the psychopathy of it, so closely aligned with eugenics & the Nazi holocausts in its racism, supremacism, elitism, & genocide.
Triage is originally a French battlefield concept from World War l where they divided wounded soldiers into three groups: those who would survive without care; those who would die despite care; & those who might survive with care. The short-staffed medics would treat the third group first. It was an emergency measure & had nothing in common with eugenics. The Nazi holocausts of Jews, Roma, Slavs, the disabled, homosexuals, Jehovah’s Witnesses, & others were rooted in eugenics. The Harvard professors, in their stinking elitism & racism, combined eugenics & fascism with triage to address famine in Africa. Now in the coronavirus epidemic we see triage being used by politicians & medical systems to justify ‘culling the herd’ of the elderly. They should not persuade us, whether we are young or old, to accept a eugenical mind set when it comes to addressing this or any health crisis. Eugenicists should not persuade us that some lives are more worthy than others. Modern capitalism has more than sufficient resources to address the medical needs of all if it prioritizes healthcare instead of privatizing it under neoliberal economic policy & making it a privilege only available to the rich.
As medical care stands today in the barbaric phase of capitalism, healthcare is not prioritized & medical policies will be based in eugenics. If most elderly were in a line waiting for treatment for coronavirus, it is likely many would allow younger people to be treated first. We just don’t want out lives to be considered dispensable as a policy. Many of us will go to our graves fighting tooth & nail against the concepts of eugenics. For that alone, our lives are worth living.