Tuesday, 27 October 2009

The crime against Down Syndrome babies in England

Sitting here watching the news, in the most cold and calculated way, I have just been subjected to a report on how 93% of babies with down syndrome are aborted in this country (you can read the article here). Amazingly the BBC chose to interview a mother and some really positive things came out of that interview. Of course, this was not the subject of the report, this was just an "interesting" side issue. The topic was how women are waiting later to have children and the fact that this results in children with down syndrome was simply an interesting point for study. It made me feel ashamed of this society of ours which talks about the eradication of almost 100, 000 people as "a decision".

What arrogance exists in this society of ours? A society that preaches inclusion and equality. This is a genocide based on the fact that we consider the people who have this condition to be unworthy of life. UNWORTHY OF LIFE! What right do we have for such an awe inducing "decision"? Here are people killed before they are born because they do not meet our apparently high standards for existence.

It is a true tragedy that we lose people who have every bit as much to contribute to this society as you and me - PROBABLY MORE!

What disgraceful arrogance in human beings allows us to "decide" that somebody does not deserve to live?

For anybody who feels that the decision to give a child with down syndrome a death sentence is just and right - stand back and think of the implications- not just for the child but for all. To destroy someone with love to give, with words to say, who without intervention would have a place in this world. In my head and my heart I go back to my own experience of friends in my life with down syndrome. How much these people had to give -how much they have given me- SO MUCH!

I go back to Jean Vanier a man who has learned more from people with down syndrome, and various other conditions, than from any others he has come into contact with- which include famous politicians and academics. This was a man who taught philosophy at university and yet NO college student and NO volume of Aristotle ever taught him more than living in community with those with "disabilities". There are hundreds of L'Arche communities all over the world filled with assistants who make the same claims as Vanier himself.

When you don't give somebody a chance at life how can you make claims about their value?

I have lived with someone with a supposed "disability" in my own life and to be perfectly honest he was a lot less disabled than the rest of us and so utterly alive. These days doctors would encourage mothers to abort babies with the same condition Garvan had. What a terrible hole in the world; not to have lost him in our family but NEVER to have had him. Below you can see him dressed as a spaceman at a party and also, with me when I was born.

There can be no worse crime than for a society to deny other human beings their right to life simply because, deep down, the rest of us think we are worth more.

The fact it is done silently and legally does not make it better - if anything it makes it worse.


Sarah - Kala said...

My friend, you are so correct. It does make things worse. I say all the time when I see a kid with Downs, "Thank God someone loves that kid!" You see few Down's these days and I remember many when I was growing up.

SQUELLY said...

Me too- it is a terrible thing!

Dymphna said...

You are absolutely right--and that's all it boils down too as well--we (as a society) think we are more worthy than children with Downs Syndrome.

(BTW, thanks so much for joining my blog--I really appreciate it!)

SQUELLY said...

Thank you! You are so welcome!

Esther G. said...

Squelly, recently a friend shared the French news report of a convent accepting a young lady with Down Syndrome to become a nun. I hope it is reported in England.

Laura said...

This breaks my heart.

SQUELLY said...

Esther - I didn't hear about this but I am so happy to! Thank you! What a wonderful thing - an example of a life being well lived - fantastic! All that potential!

Laura - me too!


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