Watching such an abortion led to the conversion of a pro-choice nurse into a life advocate.
The blogosphere was abuzz about the professor who told his class that every baby with Down syndrome should be aborted -- a clear case of bigotry. (Imagine if the screening wasn't for an extra 21st chromosome, but for a "gay gene", or for dark skin pigment. What if it was for the propensity to go bald? You'd see how bigoted the professor was being.)
There are enough people who agree with him that 90% of babies diagnosed in-utero with Down syndrome are aborted -- and three kids with the standard set of genes die for every "defective" Down syndrome baby that's weeded out. Is this an acceptable level of collateral damage? To kill three civilian bystanders for every one of the "enemy"? Why aren't the people raising hell about civilian deaths in Iraq raising hell about the innocent bystanders being killed in the war against babies with Down syndrome?
The idea that life with Down syndrome wasn't worth living cost Linda Boom her life as well as her baby's life. Christin Gilbert, on the other hand, was most likely subjected to an abortion because she herself had Down syndrome. She, like Linda, ended up as dead as her baby.
Then there is the Italian woman who ended up with two dead babies because she was willing to gamble her "normal" child's life in order to eliminate the one with Down syndrome. She got rid of the "defective" baby. Was this achievement worth the price she paid?
I need to say it again: Three genetically ordinary babies are killed for every one with Down syndrome we weed out. Evidently these kids are such a horror that it's worth killing any number of "normal" kids, just to exterminate them.
Fight the bigotry against kids with Down syndrome by supporting Band of Angels. They make beautiful calendars and greeting cards featuring kids with DS. They also have "Cenebrate Packages" that you can sponsor to help parents make the adjustment to a DS diagnosis. You can also buy Common Threads, a breathtaking coffee-table book featuring essays and pictures illustrating life with Down syndrome.
If there is a doll collecter on your gift list, consider one of the beautiful dolls by Downi Creations.
There are also some beautiful products available at Cafe Press:
*Down syndrome isn't scary - it's just different
*We are all Different. We are all Beautiful.
*Do not be afraid...
*My child took me to Holland... (The reference is from this.)
*Want to come to Holland with me?
*It's okay to be different
and my personal favorite:
*Love does not count chromosomes.
There is help and encouragement here for families that have just gotten a diagnosis of Down syndrome for their child. They can get to know other families.
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