Students at the University of California were asked by a professor at the department of Medical History for their reaction to the following:
'The father has syphilis, the mother tuberculosis. They have had four children - the first blind, the second died, the third was deaf and dumb, the fourth had tuberculosis. The mther is pregnant with her fifth child. The parents are willing to have an abortion. You have to make the decision.'
Most of the students voited in favour of abortion. Mr Agnew's comment was: 'Congratulations. You have just murdered Beethoven.'