From these beginnings, a program of mercy-killing developed which was initiated, directed and supported by doctors and psychiatrists, some of them of considerable eminence - all this when the Nazi movement was still at an embryonic stage, and Hitler had barely been heard of. Initially, the holocaust was aimed, not against Jews or Slavs, but against handicapped Aryan Germans, and was justified, not by racial theories, but by Hegelian utilitarianism, whereby what is useful is per se good, without any consideration being given to Judeo-Christian values, or, indeed to any concept whatsoever of Good and Evil. Subsequently, of course, the number of the killed rose to astronomical figures, and the medical basis for their slaughter grew ever flimsier; but is should never be forgotten that it was the euthanasia program first organized under the Weimar Republic by the medical profession, which led to and merged into the genocide program of 1941-45.Invoking the example of Nazi Germany is usually frowned upon in polite society and sophisticates cite "Godwin's Law" or the "fallacy of reductio ad Hitlerum."
Perhaps then instead of making comparison's between modern eugenics and Hitler's Germany, we should make the comparison between current medical assaults on human life and those whose advocacy of euthanasia made sure that when the Nazis rose to power, they had a ready-made instrument for their policies of racial hygiene.
Muggeridge draws attention to a prayer devised by an Anglican Bishop for use on the occasion of an abortion which runs: "Into Thy hands we commit in trust the developing life we have cut short,”. Mugg suggests that a hymn would be appropriate for the occasion: "The life thou gavest, Lord, we've ended".