Duhaime's Law Dictionary


Eugenic Definition:

A measure taken to avoid or prevent the birth of a defective child.

In Speck v Finegold, Justice Circone of the Superior Court of Pennsylvania wrote this, at footnote #4:

"Where the purpose of limiting the size of family is to prevent the birth of a defective child, the preventive measures are referred to as eugenic. Where the reason is to prevent possible harm to the mother's health or life from her pregnancy, the term used is therapeutic."

In Hummel v Reiss, Justice King of the Superior Court of New Jersey (Appellate Division) distinguished a eugenic abortion from a therapeutic abortion as follows:

"[A] eugenic abortion (is) one directed solely to eliminate a potentially defective fetus."

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