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Pregnant couples who plan to abort Down syndrome babies defend their choice

By now, most pro-lifers have heard the cruel and elitist comments made by Richard Dawkins about aborting Down syndrome babies. Dawkins claims that the “ethical” choice is to abort all babies with Down syndrome, even though these children often lead happy lives and enrich their families and society.

An NBC article by Kimbery Hayes Taylor describes the results of 3 studies conducted by Boston Children’s Hospital. In the first study, out of 2,044 parents or guardians surveyed, 79% reported their outlook on life was “more positive” because of their child with Down syndrome.

A second study found that among siblings of children with Down syndrome, 97% expressed feelings of pride for their brother or sister and 88% were convinced that they were better people because of their sibling. This study polled siblings over the age of 12.

A third study focused on the feelings and attitudes of people with Down syndrome themselves. Among adults with Down, 99% said they were happy with their lives and 97% said they liked who they were. 96% said they liked the way they looked. You would probably not find such high numbers among the general public. According to the study, Down syndrome children grow up to be happy adults.

And yet the abortion rate for Down syndrome babies is tragically high.  Some studies put the number at 90%. Our culture puts so much value on independence and individual achievement that human beings who do not “measure up” to certain standards can be rejected and aborted.  Children become commodities that can be tested and found wanting and then destroyed. Only if they pass a criteria established by their parents are they judged acceptable and allowed to be born.

Rayna Rapp, a former abortion clinic worker who aborted a baby with Down syndrome herself, conducted a survey of women and couples who sought amniocentesis to screen for Down syndrome and other problems with their babies. All of the interviewees intended to abort if the baby was found to have Down syndrome. Some of the things that these parents say about Down syndrome children are deeply troubling to anyone who values life. Here are some comments from men and women who said they would abort if the test came back positive for Down.

  • I would have a very hard time dealing with a retarded child. Retardation is relative, it could be so negligible that the child is normal, or so severe that the child has nothing… All of the sharing things you want to do, the things you want to share with a child – that, to me, is the essence of being a father. There would be a big void that I would feel. I would feel grief, not having what I consider a normal family.(133)

  • I have an image of how I want to interact with my child, and that’s not the kind of interaction I want, not the kind I could maintain. (133)

  • I’m sorry to say I couldn’t think about raising a child with Down’s. I’m something of a perfectionist. I want the best for my child. I’ve worked hard, I went to Cornell University, I’d want that for my child. I’d want to teach him things he couldn’t absorb. I’m sorry I can’t be more accepting, but I’m clear I wouldn’t want to continue the pregnancy.( 133 – 134)

  • The bottom line is when my neighbor said to me: “Having a “tard,” that’s a bummer for life.” (91)

  • I just couldn’t do it, couldn’t be that kind of mother who accepts everything, loves her kid no matter what. What about me? Maybe it’s selfish, I don’t know. But I just didn’t want all those problems in my life. (138)

  • If he can’t grow up to have a shot at becoming the president, we don’t want him.(92)

  • It’s devastating, it’s a waste, all the love that goes into kids like that. (134)

  • I think it’s kind of like triage, or like euthanasia. There aren’t enough resources in the world. We’d have to move, to focus our whole family on getting a handicapped kid a better deal… Why spend $50,000 to save one child?(146)

All of these mothers and fathers (for they are already mothers and fathers to their babies growing in the womb) had chosen to have abortions if the baby had Down. The book did not specify which pregnancies actually tested positive and how many went on to abort. But all of the quotes above were made by men and women who fully intended to kill their babies if they turned out to be mentally challenged.

Many of these people were affluent, successful men and women. They had an idea of what they wanted their child to be like, and if it turns out their baby does not measure up to their expectations, they want to reject that child and try again. It’s a consumer culture that views babies as commodities that can be accepted or rejected based on the parents expectations.

You have to wonder how these parents would react if their “normal” child turned out to have a learning disability or just is less of an overachiever- not as perfect as they want him to be. The sanctity of human life has been defeated by a consumer culture where women have amniocentesis in order to decide whether or not a baby is acceptable to be born, as if they were purchasing a pair of shoes and looking for the most comfortable and attractive ones.

Two of the people interviewed also expressed reluctance to make the sacrifices required to care for a Down syndrome child. Not wanting “problems in my life” becomes a tragic statement when you realize that all children cause “problems” at one time or another. Putting a monetary cost on a child’s life and deciding that the child’s life isn’t worth that arbitrary amount is even worse. I wonder how much money the mother who so cavalierly said “Why spend $50,000  to save one child” thinks her own life is worth?

I wonder if the respondents knew that there is a waiting list of parents hoping to adopt children with Down syndrome.  Sadly, I doubt this knowledge would make a difference to those who rejected their children.

Source: Rayna Rapp Testing Women, Testing the Fetus: the Social Impact of Amniocentesis in America (New York: Routledge, 1999)

  • Christina

    The one about being president is sickening. That’s honestly a reason to kill someone???? (All of these reasons make my stomach churn, actually.)

  • CailynAlexis

    I feel so…just physically sick after reading those comments. I just cannot UNDERSTAND how people think anymore! The idea of doing this to your own child because he or she is not perfect in your eyes.

    “If he can’t grow up to have a shot at being president, we don’t want him.”
    “It’s devastating, it’s a waste, all the love that goes into kids like that.”
    “I just couldn’t do it, couldn’t be that kind of mother who accepts everything, who loves her kid no matter what. What about me? Maybe it’s selfish. I don’t know.”

    It’s way beyond selfish. It’s cruel and it’s sickening and it’s these kind of people who should be sterilized and never allowed to have children.

    • sarah5775

      I couldn’t help but think – what if their “normal” children turn out to be a disappointment to them? What if their normal children end up having learning disabilities are just not meeting their expectations? Because their son cant make it into Cornell he’s not valuable? I cant imagine how these people would even be decent parents to any child

      • Basset_Hound

        ” I cant imagine how these people would even be decent parents to any child”

        I’ll take it one step further, sarah. I can’t imagine these people being decent dog owners!

        • Griffonn

          I saw a Basset Hounds 2015 calendar today and thought of your Greta.

          • Basset_Hound

            Saw several at Calendars.com.

          • Griffonn

            I think it was the big soulful eyes.

            Th_Ph made a comment about how your avatar is like your online “Face”. Yours is looking at me, just a little bit sad, and I have to wonder if there’s a question in there I’m supposed to be answering.

          • Basset_Hound

            …like how come there’s no food in my dish yet? I finished breakfast a couple of hours ago.

          • Griffonn

            There’s nothing in the world quite like waking up to a pair of staring eyes letting you know it’s past feeding time.

            Unless maybe it’s multiple pairs of eyes waiting for their breakfast.

      • Lupe Lopez-Valdez

        I agree with u. What would happen if their son or daughter got into a car accident and became a paraplegic what would they do then?

        • Tammy Clegg

          perhaps dissown them?

  • Basset_Hound

    Ladies and gentlemen, read these comments and see if there is anything that could pass for compassion in them. Oh yes, there is the condescending “fake” compassion that justifies killing the child so that he could be “spared suffering”.

    Imagine trying to raise a child with a disability surrounded by people with such attitudes.
    Imagine people of their ilk deciding if your child receives the medical care and physical therapy he needs to achieve his maximum potential.

    • Lupe Lopez-Valdez

      Why does it matter what other people think?

      • Tammy Clegg

        agreed

  • MamaBear

    How did we ever become a society so lacking in compassion and empathy? Even most normal children will be a disappointment to people like this.

    • Basset_Hound

      My guess that the children of these commenters are bearing the weight of knowing they could never live up to mom and dad’s expectations.

      • MamaBear

        If they can’t grow up to be president? Only a handful per generation can do that! And as corrupt as politics is these days…….just give me children and grandchildren who help others, who are honest and upright, love God and other people.

    • Griffonn

      I have said this on numerous other controversies: children’s rights is going to be the next big civil rights movement.

    • Janet

      How? When we removed all traces of God from the public square. When self-awareness transcended a search for the Almighty. Sure, there were plenty of problems like a lack of compassion or empathy in society at all times. We’re a fallen people and human nature never changes. But I will make the argument that it would have been socially unacceptable 40, 30 or even 20 years ago to make statements like those mentioned in this article. These people would have been treated as pariahs for publicly stating such views. Now? Why, it’s just a lifestyle choice, an honest, authentic expression of their feelings. It’s all about them – and their gods within – and how best to fulfill their personal goals and respect their own feelings. When you remove God there is a vacuum created that is quickly filled by our own egos.

      • MamaBear

        But at the same time, Christianity, and the values associated with it, is seen as “intolerant,” and therefore not to be tolerated in our PC world.
        Ironically, many of the moral values being dumped as “Christian” have actually been shared throughout millennia by other religions and even the nonreligious until recent times. I don’t have the quote, but CS Lewis talked about how not having the whole truth does not prevent other religions and philosophies from having parts of the truth.
        And you are right, we have been setting ourselves up as gods. Our egos have become idols which we set not only above God, but above love of family, sacrifice for others, compassion, loyalty, self-discipline, and morality.

  • Basset_Hound

    “This is why..why we fight..
    why we lie awake..
    this is why we fight…
    come hell….

    (with apologies to the Decemberists, and dedicated to those who say “drop the social issues, you’re turning people off”).

  • April Pastorius Wise

    What’s most telling and what stands out the most is how often the words ‘I’ and ‘me’ are used.

    • Griffonn

      Parenthood as consumption experience.

    • Mary Lee

      Yes! I made the same comment…..because I didn’t read through. But it really is striking, isn’t it? It’s pathetic.

  • All of these reasons are unjustified,and very disturbing.Why not give the child up for adoption to someone who is willing to care for a DS baby.

  • Valerie Finnigan

    I wonder how many of these people would say they believe diversity is a good thing. Maybe they only think that if it’s not in their own family. Someone should tell them real tolerance and acceptance of diversity begins at home.

    • Griffonn

      And how many would say that “intelligent” animals have rights.

      I’m sorry, but even the smartest dog (I once owned a black lab, they’re very smart) is not smarter than a person with Down’s.

  • Faye Valentine

    Children being raised by monsters so that they grow up to become monsters themselves. How many of these go on to have other children afterwards? How many of those “normal” children have found out about their mothers having killed their siblings? How many of those had it explained to them as, “I had to because there was something wrong with the pregnancy. “, and interpreted that as “OMG, MOM *HAD* TO OR SHE WOULD DIEEEEEE!”

    And now I’m just wondering how many of those kids I’ve debated on Twitter.

  • Catherine Wettengel

    I cannot help as I translate each of them to feel sad for them also. These people have been shortchanged somewhere along the way. It’s not an excuse, but it’s just something I noticed. Here goes:

    •I would have a very hard time dealing with a retarded
    child. Retardation is relative, it could be so negligible that the child is
    normal, or so severe that the child has nothing… All of the sharing things you
    want to do, the things you want to share with a child – that, to me, is the
    essence of being a father. There would be a big void that I would feel. I would
    feel grief, not having what I consider a normal family.(133)

    Translation: “If I cannot share the things I want to share
    with my child, then I am not that child’s father. I would kill my child out of
    fear of what that child would not have.” This guy is coming from a place of
    fear and he’s aware of it, but hiding behind his definition of fatherhood to
    conceal it.

    •I have an image of how I want to interact with my child,
    and that’s not the kind of interaction I want, not the kind I could maintain.
    (133)

    Translation: “My child’s life is valuable if and only if I can interact with the child in the way
    I want to interact. Anything outside of that is beyond my ability. I don’t know
    what I would do.” This person needs a confidence booster like nobody’s
    business.

    •I’m sorry to say I couldn’t think about raising a child
    with Down’s. I’m something of a perfectionist. I want the best for my child.
    I’ve worked hard, I went to Cornell University, I’d want that for my child. I’d
    want to teach him things he couldn’t absorb. I’m sorry I can’t be more
    accepting, but I’m clear I wouldn’t want to continue the pregnancy.( 133 – 134)

    Translation: “I want what I perceive to be the best child for myself. If that means
    killing other kids who are also mine, then so be it.” Another thing I
    notice is that she refers to “[her] child” only in terms of the one
    she’d be willing to accept. That’s a lot of ego. In short, her ego’s rules are
    THE way she determines who is a person and who is a thing. This thinking is
    dangerous for obvious reasons. It’s gotten us into so much trouble historically
    speaking. And, in the choice of wording to refer to the kid, it’s more obvious
    right at the end. The kid is referred to as, “pregnancy”.

    •The bottom line is when my neighbor said to me: “Having a
    “tard,” that’s a bummer for life.” (91)

    Translation: “How other people view my life is a major
    component to my decisions. It’s such a major factor, that I’d be willing to
    kill my kid in an attempt to avoid that kind of judgment and pain.” I can
    understand this sentiment all the way up to the point where the person would be
    willing to sacrifice his or her kid to it.

    •I just couldn’t do it, couldn’t be that kind of mother who
    accepts everything, loves her kid no matter what. What about me? Maybe it’s
    selfish, I don’t know. But I just didn’t want all those problems in my life.
    (138)

    Translation: “I’m afraid to love someone if I think it would
    hurt. I’m afraid to live to the point where I’m afraid to let my kid live.” The
    fear is understandable. But, again, killing the kid…not the answer.

    •If he can’t grow up to have a shot at becoming the
    president, we don’t want him. (92)

    Translation: None needed here. And who the heck wrote this?!
    Jerks.

    •It’s devastating, it’s a waste, all the love that goes into
    kids like that. (134)

    Translation: “Kids with disabilities are a waste of life.”

    •I think it’s kind of like triage, or like euthanasia. There
    aren’t enough resources in the world. We’d have to move, to focus our whole
    family on getting a handicapped kid a better deal… Why spend $50,000 to save
    one child?(146)

    Translation: “Lives are not worth saving if it’s too much
    trouble. Truly valuable things are inanimate. Raw utilitarianism is the way to
    go. Anything else in ethics and morals be damned.”

    • Griffonn

      I would kill my child out of fear of what that child would not have.

      You mean out of what he, the father, would not have.

      it’s 100% about HIS experience as a father.

      Other than that, you are spot on.

    • Nygrl WindinherHair

      Your very selfish!!!!!!!

  • Natalie

    Sleaze bag no account parents

  • neb67rsb

    Just wait till they raise this child (male or female) and it aspires to be a 7 – 11 clerk because that makes them happy! Or have a child with a 4.0 GPA who CHOOSES to be a soldier (infantryman) despite the fact that the entire Army is trying to convince him to do something else with his intelligence. They are ALL disillusioned if they think for one second that they get a say in what that child becomes. I have raised 6 and they choose for themselves. I have guided and helped, but the choice is theirs to make. Won’t it be a HUGE disappointment to Cornell Univ. to have a child that does NOT like school and has no intention of going to ANY college!?

    • MamaBear

      So true. They each go their own way. All mine actually did get university educations, each from a different university. One even went to my alma mater’s rival.

  • Joe

    Another factor to consider are the serious health issues these children can suffer. “Heart defects occur in around 47% of individuals with Down syndrome and 10 to 15% of babies with Down syndrome have a severe heart defect that requires surgical intervention during the first few months of life.” Theymay not have a quality of life due and it is cruel to extend suffering. Many children with Down’s end up relatively healthy but that is another factor to consider. I also wonder where are all these people who want to adopt? There are 104,000 children waiting to be adopted in the US not to mention all of the poor kids who are refugees coming into this country. Why is it most people only want to ‘help’ a child when it is an embryo but are not willing to open their home once the child is born and has experienced some of life?

    • Cynical_Meliorist

      A few things, Joe.

      “They may not have a quality of life due and it is cruel to extend suffering. Many children with Down’s end up relatively healthy but that is another factor to consider.”

      You’re making the claim that to allow them to live is extending suffering, but then you’re saying that many of them end up healthy. Your’re arguing both ends of the position with this statement and what preceded it. You’re also using an Appeal to Consequence, or Pity, to justify the position. There is no way to predict the future, and thus arguing from that position really lends no weight to the discussion.

      “I also wonder where are all these people who want to adopt? There are 104,000 children waiting to be adopted in the US not to mention all of the poor kids who are refugees coming into this country. Why is it most people only want to ‘help’ a child when it is an embryo but are not willing to open their home once the child is born and has experienced some of life?”

      This is a form of relative privation. The discussions about adoption and abortion have some connections, but they’re two entirely different subjects which require different facts and points. To answer, however, I would offer up that it’s not through a lack of those willing to adopt, per se, but the level of government red tape that results from the process. Adopting a child usually isn’t as easy as say, buying a puppy from the local pet store. Often, these processes take years to complete.

      It’s factually incorrect, though, to assume that pro life people are only concerned with life before birth. This is, in fact, a line used most often by hard-line abortion supporters to detract and deviate the conversation and is nothing more than a red herring. If it were true, then the same question asked to abortion supporters would require the same answer, which would make them rather uncomfortable. However, that too is also a separate discussion, and not one to attach with the abortion issue.

  • Mary Lee

    These disgusting answers are all “I, I, I” and “me, me, me”……And “I went to Cornell,” that’s a beaut. What in the world does that have to do with anything?

    • Griffonn

      I used to fear there was no such thing as cosmic justice.

      Then one day I realized, people like this have to live with each other.

    • Basset_Hound

      These people don’t want children. They want another possession that will reflect on how smart and fabulous they are.

      It’s too bad the technology of Steven Spielberg’s movie A.I. is a long way from being reality. Then we could sterilize all these consumers and give them the perfect little android children the want.

  • Suzanne Carter

    Omg!!! Those people are sick, selfish and do not deserve any children. All babies are a blessing. If God let them survive then they were meant to be. God has a plan for us all.

  • Mom2four

    I think that most of those people who commented would not make good parents to any child. They are seeking the wrong goals in life, period. We cannot plan the path of our lives to be without heartache or difficulty, that is life; and we must learn to embrace it. That is also a trait we must teach our children. These individuals want to control what happens in their lives to an extent that is unreasonable. Stay single folks, and childless!

  • disqus_cSSV21a9ha

    I feel so sorry for the “normal”/ “healthy” children born to these people who later become disabled through accident or disease… what then?

    • Nygrl WindinherHair

      Yes u are right…..Karma

  • Lupe Lopez-Valdez

    All u fucken people who abort and use the r word are the biggest fucken assholes in the world I hope your fucken life sucks after u abort such a beautiful precious life!!!

    • Nygrl WindinherHair

      I like your thinking !!! Good for you Lupe

  • Nygrl WindinherHair

    You stupid fucken people. Maybe we should of aborted you. The so called Normal people are more retarded than sny down syndrome child ive encountered. Until you have a child with a disability Dont even make a comment YOU PEOPLE ARE IGNORANT

    • Basset_Hound

      I do have a child with a disability. So if we follow your “logic”, we shouldn’t comment about puppy mills because we’re not dogs.

      • Nygrl WindinherHair

        Children arent puppies !……… were talking about Human Beings

        • Basset_Hound

          No sweetheart. The way I see it, you were saying that unless one of us had a child with a disability, we had no business making a comment that a child with Down’s Syndrome should not be aborted. Or at least that was the point I got from your profanity laced illiterate diatribe.

          I suggest you enroll in a course through your local school district and improve your grammar. THEN come back and share your “wisdom”.

          • Nygrl WindinherHair

            Your absolutely fucken right. IGNORANT FOOLS like you shouldnt exist! Grammar. Lol is very correct and dont call me sweetheart asshole. FIND another subject to talk about cause you dont have a fucken clue !!!

          • MamaBear

            There is no reason to get on here and insult and curse. You seem to be having difficulty with reading comprehension, because you said earlier you are against abortion, but you misunderstand and lash out at others who are against abortion.

          • Nygrl WindinherHair

            Wasnt talking to u So I suggest you sthu

          • MamaBear

            Everyone is free to comment on any other comment on here. Please try to use a little civility.

          • Nygrl WindinherHair

            DELETE MY PROFILE!!!!!!

          • Basset_Hound

            I got a look at her reply before it was deleted. Apparently she doesn’t know how to express an opinion on any subject, only to sling around “big” words like “asshole” and “fuken”.

    • Griffonn

      Why should we abort people with intellectual disabilities?

      If anyone should be weeded out of the gene pool, it’s people who lack compassion and empathy.

      Fortunately for you, there is no way to do that – because people with compassion and empathy by definition will not go along with the plan.

      • Cynical_Meliorist

        If i may….

        It could be that Nyfrl here was talking to the people in the article (who would abort their children with disabilities), rather than the collective commenting group. She could be doing that, but it’s hard to tell based on how she posted it.

        • MamaBear

          Cynical, I went back and reread her comments. I think you are right and perhaps she has some reading comprehension problems. It is clear she has grammar and shall we say “vocabulary” limitations.

    • Cynical_Meliorist

      Just to clarify…are you being angry towards the pro life position, or towards those in the article who would abort their disabled children? Your post isn’t very clear about who you’re leveling the discussion at in general.

      Regardless of which it is, throwing out a bunch of “shutuppery” isn’t really helpful.

  • Basset_Hound

    I have a friend who is a school nurse at a wealthy high school. One of her students came close to suicide because she couldn’t live up to the expectations of parents such as Cornell dude. This girl wasn’t a ” ‘tard”, but they couldn’t be bothered with her because she was in the top 12% of her class instead of the top 1%. Neither one of the parents wanted to interrupt their jet-setting careers to listen to their daughter.

  • Thomas Hart Sinclair

    People are entitled to their opinions, of course, but it is rather telling that the people giving the opinions above certainly sound like people I would want to abort, if only it was possible to to look into the future character and personality of an unborn child. Weird!…

    • Nygrl WindinherHair

      Abort the mothers who are taking care of downs children is ubserd. You need to educate yourself Thomas . God doesnt create mistakes maybe comments like that he frowns on because we are all his children. I believe every woman has the right to free choice but aborting a child with ds is ludicris these are beautiful compassionate loving human beings! The thought of someone sayong this makes me sick .I have a beautiful child with ds and To make myself clear Thomas God only gives these children to qualified human beings.So I am blessed to care for and raise 3Beautiful children alone as a widow. Everyone has a choice and it sickens me to think any woman could abort a child let alone knowing they are gonna have a child with a disability and abort that child. Yes my opinion is mine and im sorry some people dont agree.but I cant help that. All I know is EDUCATE YOURSELF FIRST BEFORE YOU DECIDE TO ABORT ANY CHILD.THESE ARE GODS CREATIONS! You dont mess with that

      • Thomas Hart Sinclair

        You don’t read very well, do you? I said that the people the article discussed sounded like good candidates for abortion.

        • Nygrl WindinherHair

          Noones a candidate for ABORTION ……you loser

  • Tammy Clegg

    i have a downs sister.. and she has been a blessing ever since.. people that don’t like downs kids.. it’s sickening to my stomach.. so much so that i’m in tears with a burning pain in my throat just knowing how those people think.. why bless them with a child when they don’t deserve one.. #absolutely.shattered they have nothing but a pure & loving soul.. more so than most humans..

  • regulus30

    HELLO AMERICA;;;welcome to the world of genetic engineering AKA; Margret Sanger & Bernard Shaw…….sick left wing wackos turned loose.

  • aprilsunshine

    What horrible selfish people! What’s so different if someone said “well, my child is going to be of another race, & won’t have all the advantages, so I will just kill him before he takes a breath.” Children with Down Syndrome are wonderful human beings. They teach others much more than a normal child would; wisdom, patience, kindness, what real love is, unselfishness; the list goes on & on. Down Syndrome children should be the LAST to be aborted; unfortunately, young people are of the “MY, ME, I” mindset. Therefore, they will never truly grow & they will never reach THEIR full human potential. A sad, sorry thing for our world.

  • B. F.

    The people are barbaric. I put their immoral ethics (including that of Richard Dawkins) on the same level as Attila the Hun.

  • DanaM7

    DS babies are full of such love and spirit. I hope that
    everyone realizes what precious angels they truly are!

    • Matthew Shearin

      You are just stereotyping them. People with DS are individuals like the rest of us. While some are outgoing, others are withdrawn, like my cousin’s sister who has it, and others can be aggressive.

  • tigerlilly

    I have lived my entire life with a mentally challenged brother, due to having a tumor on his brain. He’s not Down’s but he’s not mentally “normal”. I love my brother, yes, but there are so many times I’ve wished he would just die. Because he made our lives harder. He’d physically and mentally abuse me and my sister and continued to do so up until we moved out (I got married and my little sister moved in with my dad). And even then he recently broke my arm because I told him not to hit my mom’s cat when I was visiting. Then he put my mother in the hospital. I have wanted him to die almost my entire life. Because he made everything shit for everyone around him. He’s eighteen now. Just knocked up a sixteen year old, on purpose, so she would move in with him at my mom’s house and marry him. About to be a father and make those lives a living hell as well from how he talks about them.

    Now I know that you all are saying that people who put down children with Down’s are horrible selfish people! How dare they not ruin their entire lives raising a child that makes it harder for them and makes them unhappy!

    Makes them miserable. If they were unhappy how do you think the kid would be? Honestly, if I had a child with special needs, I would not be able to give it as much as I’d want to even though I know I’d still love it. I know that makes me a monster in a lot of your eyes, a selfish, uncaring beast. But I wouldn’t want to sacrifice the lives of everyone around me as well as my own for one. As much as I’d still love my child, it would make everyone’s life harder. Their mother and father. Their siblings. Even the pets.
    My brother made my life hell. Ruined everything and took almost everything I had. And because I’ve seen how negative someone not being “normal” can be, I don’t want a child that is born with a mental defect like Down’s Syndrome.

    “What if the “normal” kid has asthma? Or gets into an accident and gets paralyzed?”
    How are either of those comparable to Down’s? Or any mental retardation?
    My brother also has asthma, but that isn’t what’s hard. He has an inhaler.
    I have a friend who’s paralyzed from the waist down, but he doesn’t have any trouble or any special needs and he can and does live his own life.

    As much as I love every child, yes even those with Down’s or other mental illnesses, I don’t see how people can do it.

    What about the people that give up “normal” kids for adoption or get an abortion because they can’t handle the baby? Are they horrible people just because it didn’t fit in with their lifestyle? People make choices for themselves. People would consider me selfish for moving out of my mom’s because I was the only thing keeping my brother from hitting my mom. I made a choice for me.

    Some of these comments from parents made me sick because they didn’t want a special baby for all the wrong reasons (like the President one). But so did a lot of the comments I see from everyone else.

    Yes. Some people have Down’s babies and love them all the same. But not everyone can do that. And while I applaud the parents who can and do, I’m not one of them.

    • Matthew Shearin

      Honest post. What a lot of these people on here don’t seem to realize is you are also obligating other people when a woman brings a DS child to term, like what you said, and you will also be obligating your insurance company and healthcare system if they are more severly affected. I just don’t see how it would be responsible, fair, or even ethical to take that gamble.

  • Michelle

    Wow everyone is so emotional. Thinking that these people are monsters. I don’t think they are, but of course in your eyes I am. Because I would terminate a downs baby pregnancy.
    I would accept them if they were black, white, yellow, brown, really awkward, vegan, or a tattoo enthusiast. One of the few things I don’t want for my child is to be retarded. Is that to much to ask for?

    • sarah5775

      What would you do if your healthy and normal six year old got in an accident and lost oxygen to the brain, then became “retarded” like a down syndrome baby? Would you kill your child? because giving birth to a healthy child is no indication they will always be healthy. Horrible accidents happen sometimes, and if you won’t accept a child with a disability before birth, how will you feel if you end up with a disabled one due to accident or illness?

      • Matthew Shearin

        The difference is when a DS diagnoses is found, the embyro/fetus is not a fully develped, psychologically functioning individual and is living off someone else who is, and who doesn’t want to bring a mentally disabled person into the world.
        When your older child or adult child becomes disabled they are a fully developed individual and is not living off you anymore. When parents are forced into such a situation they make the best of it. That is the difference.

  • Andrew

    I couldn’t raise a retarded child. The thought of it never being able to function by itself, always having to have someone take care of it. If madison and I had a child that was retarded, a child that never could take care of its self, never be able to do anything for itself, always needed to be with us, I don’t even know what I would do. I wouldn’t even feel right about giving it away because it is now someone else’s burden. I plan on sailing the world with my wife one day, and having children would be a great experience. But have a retarded child who would have to live with you forever would halt our lives completely. We just couldn’t and wouldn’t do it.

  • Jangmi

    Liberals: It’s all about Tolerance and Diversity and Being Accepting of people who are “born different” !!!

  • Paulus Magus

    How is this tragic? Violent retards who can’t take care of themselves should be aborted.

  • Leah

    People like you who impose morally high standards are subhumans who hate themselves because you rarely follow it. Give those parents your adresses you things that call yourself humans, so they can leave Down Syndrome kids at your doorstep. My grandmother’s sister had a Down Syndrome kid and the pain she went through was not something I would wish even on my enemy. She used to tell us, the most selfisg thing a parent can do is bring a Downsyndrome kid into this world. She did EVERYTHING, I mean everything to make sure her son received the best care and the best possible shot at a future. Today she has passed away and her poor son is in an institution, unwanted. What do you think is going to happen to those children once you are gone?! Here is to people: do what you think is best, don’t listen to these morally judgy people because when you suffer they could care two hoots about what you’re going through.

    • PJ4

      That’s awfully judgey of you to think that we don’t care about people’s suffering.
      But… I wouldn’t expect anything less than that from an ableist such as yourself.

      You’re a sick subhuman inhumane monster.

    • East Pikeland

      That lady’s sister sounds like a piece of work. Rotten is as Rotten does. Who cares what a creep like her has to say!

    • Matthew Shearin

      I know what you mean. My cousins-half sister has a severe to moderate form of Down Syndrome. She is 46 and is living in a nursing home with her elderly father. Her brothers, my cousins, are in their 70s and apparently aren’t able or willing to help with her needs. They don’t like to talk about it. There is another side to DS that these people are not telling us.

    • Amanda Ruth

      If someone wanted to give their baby to me I would sure let them drop it off at my doorstep.

  • Leah

    Yes, not feutus. Life is when a child can breathe on its own, not through the womb of a woman. The only way can make abortion illegal is if the womb and vagina of a woman is the property of the society. That men and women can decide what a woman can and cannot do with her body.

    • Griffonn

      You have already established that if we agree to grant you the power to add arbitrary criteria to which “men” count as “all men are created equal”, you’ll never stop.

      First it will be “you’re not really human unless you’re this or that’.

      Then it will be “you’re not really human unless you’re this or that PLUS this new thing.”

      You don’t get to decide which people count as people.

    • PJ4

      Life is when a child can breathe on its own, not through the womb of a woman.

      Find me one biology, embryology, or genetics book that supports this ridiculous claim of yours–just one–and you win.

      I’ll even accept a peer reviewed and published paper or study.

      I’ll start:
      [The zygote], formed by the union of an oocyte and a sperm, is the beginning of a new human being. —Keith L. Moore, Before We Are Born: Essentials of Embryology, 7th edition. Philadelphia, PA: Saunders, 2008. p. 2.

      Traditional ways of classifying catalog animals according to their adult structure. But, as J. T. Bonner (1965)pointed out, this is a very artificial method, because what we consider an individual is usually just a brief slice of its life cycle. When we consider a dog, for instance, we usually picture an adult. But the dog is a “dog” from the moment of fertilization of a dog egg by a dog sperm. It remains a dog even as a senescent dying hound. Therefore, the dog is actually the entire life cycle of the animal, from fertilization through death. –Dr. Scott F Gilbert.

      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK10044/

      Ok, your turn.

      • Matthew Shearin

        PJ4, Wether or not a fertilized egg or embyro is a person can inspire much emotion from both sides of the debate, even from professionals, but if you think about it, it is not normal or logical to consider a human cell or dog cell(s) a human or dog if it is not already incorporated into a working body. While it is true these cells are biologically human or dog, they have no centinence, are not a fully developed and psychologically functioning individual, and are living off someone who is.

        • MarcAlcan

          Can a human hair become a full blown human being? If you leave the hair alone (attached to the head so that it continues its life), will it suddenly start eating, walking, talking and learning 3 years later?

          • Matt S

            No, but the point I was trying to make is it’s not rational to believe something is something else if it’s not already realized. I wouldn’t consider a child, for example, to be an adult or elder if they have not already become one. The future is not written.

          • MarcAlcan

            You are being disingenuous. Your argument was that a hair cell is the same as the cell of a human embryo.

            As for considering a child not an adult until they become one, that is one of the most stupid comments I have heard.

            Of course of you kill a child there will not be an adult to speak. That is a no brainer.

            If someone had hacked you to death when you were two, I would not be talking to you now. By your argument, whether someone hacked you to death then or allowed you to live makes no difference.

          • Matt S

            “You are being disingenuous.Your argument was that a hair cell is the same as the cell of a human embryo.”

            My point is that if you have a zygote cell, embryonic cell, or any other kind of human cell in front of you, no rational person is going to want to claim they should be given the status of a person. Different cells have different functions, but they are still cells.

            “As for considering a child not an adult until they become one, that is one of the most stupid comments I have heard.”

            If you believe a fertilized egg is a person then whatever I say about this issue is moot, and there is no reason to carry this discussion any further, but for people who hold my view it is silly to believe an embryo is a human being until it develops into one. That is what I meant.

          • MarcAlcan

            My point is that if you have a zygote cell, embryonic cell, or any other kind of human cell in front of you, no rational person is going to want to claim they should be given the status of a person

            Yes you give it the status of a person the first right being the right to life.

            All rights of a person proceed from that.

            Children don’t have the right to vote, but they have a right to life.

            They are no less a person than you are.

            If you believe a fertilized egg is a person then whatever I say about this issue is moot

            If you believe that the fertilized egg that was you was not a human being, then pray tell what were you?

            And if a human being is not a person at the beginning of it’s life then when does it become a person and who decides when it becomes a person.

            And please don’t give me this personhood argument rubbish. A corporation is a person by legal definition.

          • Matt S

            1″If you believe that the fertilized egg that was you was not a human being, then pray tell what were you?”

            2″And if a human being is not a person at the beginning of it’s life then when does it become a person and who decides when it becomes a person.”

            1, When what would become me was a fertilized zygote cell I would simply consider it a cell, and nothing more. While it were biologically human and contained DNA that had the information to turn into me, it had not yet developed into a more complex orgainism or human being. I hope this helps to clarify?
            2, As for the second paragraph, this is the problem with the abortion debate. People fundamentally disagree about the concept of human life and the concept of personhood.

          • MarcAlcan

            1) Exactly. It is biologically human because it is a human being. Any textbook on human biology regards this as a stage in human development in the same way that toddler is a stage and adolescence is a stage. Hack the being at any stage and you no longer have the being that will continue into adulthood.
            2) But that is nothing more than relativism. Either it is or it is not and we can determine that.
            Like I asked: Who decides what is a person and who decides when one becomes a person. Black skinned people used not to be considered human beings. Nazi’s did not consider Jews human beings.
            Who decides? And if you say everyone can decide, then should someone kill you because he thinks you’re no better than a dog, then he has every right to say so and act so.

          • Matt S

            But you are thinking in terms of absolutes, and things are not that simple. I already admitted that a zygote or embryo is biologically human, but that it’s not normal to believe any human cell is a human being. The embryo develops into a more complex human organism until it becomes a full-term baby, and from there it simply grows and matures into an adult. I do find there to be an obvious difference from that stage and a zygote cell developing into a human body.

          • MarcAlcan

            But you are thinking in terms of absolutes, and things are not that simple

            And there goes your relativist self again. Yes, Virginia there are absolutes.

            I already admitted that a zygote or embryo is biologically human, but that it’s not normal to believe any human cell is a human being.

            Goodness, you are becoming comprehension challenged the longer we speak.

            I never said that ANY human cell is a human being. You are in fact the one who said that no human cell s a human being when you compared the baby in the womb to a hair.

            Only the embryo is a human being. Every biological textbook will tell you that zygote and embryo is just a STAGE in the development of a human being. Just like teenager and toddlet and adult. They are nothing more than stages. The toddler is not less of a human being than an octogenarian.

            You will never, ever find it in any biological textbook that a hair or skin is a STAGE in biological development.

            That my dear is so simple. Only the WILFULLY obtuse will not grasp that.

          • Matt S

            And I am getting frustrated that you apparently don’t understand how silly your idea i
            s that even a single zygote cell should be considered a human being. This goes to show just how far apart people like us are on this issue, and before now I never resorted to name calling.
            And I’m quite aware at what a biology textbook says, but in all honesty life is a continuous process, even the sperm and egg cells are biologically human and living. From conception to the third trimester a zygote cell must develop into a more complex organism, from a single cell organism to a much more complex human organism of trillions of cells. This is a noticeable difference that anyone, biologist or not, should understand. While a newborn never develops into a more complex organism but simply grows and matures into an adult. That is the difference.

          • MarcAlcan

            No Matt, you are the silly one because it seems you are clueless about biology. Even secular texts refer to the embryo, zygote, etc as a STAGE IN HUMAN DEVELOPMENT. You have great problem with comprehension.

            Furthermore, you are stupid enough to think that zygotes get aborted. Zygotes are 1-5 days. Down’s Syndrome is detected at 11 weeks or more. Do read up more. At the zygote stage, no one knows that one is even pregnant.

            You want to use that term to diminish the nature of a human being. If a zygote has no rights then neither do you and you can be thrown off a cliff and it would not matter in the same manner you think it would not matter than killing someone in the womb does not matter.

          • Matt S

            As I said before, I’m well aware of what secular textbooks say. However, any reasonable person will notice an embryo and a full term baby are not the same things biologically, and even at 11 weeks, it is still not as developed of an organism as the woman, and is living off her body.
            If you must think in terms of such absolutes, that is fine, but becoming emotional is not helping your argument, and I don’t see how continuing this debate is going to benefit either one of us.

          • MarcAlcan

            any reasonable person will notice an embryo and a full term baby are not the same things biologically

            And neither is a new born and an octogenarian. Neither is a toddler and a pubescent child.
            So is the new born not a human being because it is not as developed as the teenager? Would it be okay to kill the new born who has DS because alas, we failed to detect it in the womb?

          • Matt S

            Technically an octogenarian is the same thing, but more advanced in age than a newborn. A zygote cell must develop into a much more complex organism over several months.

          • MarcAlcan

            Get this Matt, the zygote is a human being. Not a fully developed human being but a human being. The zygote in your mother’s womb was you, not just your hair or you hand, it was you. Tiny yes, needing to grow yes, but it was you.

      • Amanda Ruth

        I wonder when the life of a puppy or kitten begins.

    • Nordog6561

      Ghoul.

    • MarcAlcan

      Life is when a child can breathe on its own, not through the womb of a woman

      What an incredibly stupid comment.
      So let me get this straight : when you were in your mother’s womb you were dead and by so miracle when you came out of it you became alive?
      Or is it the grey cells that are dead now which make you say things like this?

  • Nikki

    I don’t think you’re being realistic. The chances of someone adopting a disabled child is very small one. Disabled kids stay in the system longer than any other demographic. How do we know that the child won’t be abused in the system?

    Raising a disabled child costs a lot (finically and emotionally). There are surgeries, therapies, medications, special equipment & accommodations, special schools, possibility of having to send them to a group home, or having them live with you until you die. I haven’t even gotten to the emotional toll it takes on the parents and siblings.

    • So we should terminate the life of a handicapped child because the child may pose some difficulties?Doesn’t every human being have a right to life.This is not Nazi Germany.I am both a Social Worker and a former foster child.There are many good endings.Not every child is abused.We don’t “kill children”,to do them a favor of saving them from a possible hard life sometime in the future.

      • Nikki

        Nope, I just don’t think adoption is the best decision. If I implied an abortion (even though I don’t think I did), then let me clarify that I wasn’t my point. I was just saying that adoption isn’t being realistic.

        A couple that choose to adopt a child with a disability is probably prepared for it.

        • At the end of the article,it does state there is a waiting list for DS babies.

        • You are talking about taking the life of a handicapped child for selfish reasons.Unborn babies are alive and have a right to a full life,whether or not they are able bodied.

    • unusualmind

      how do we determine what is a hard life and what isn’. Yes RAISING A CHILD in general costs a lot financially and emotionally. It takes a toll on the parents and the siblings. And if you think those things don’t happen to normal children, you have never been a parent. .Who are we to determine what life is worth living and what life isn’t? As the sibling of a mentally retarded brother, I can tell you they give you more to your life than they could ever take out.

      • Nikki

        No, I’m not a parent but I’m well aware of the issues that a parent could possibly face when raising a “normal” child. My parents went through a lot of financial and emotional things because of me.

        Depression, anxiety, and narcolepsy with cataplexy… I wasn’t born with these conditions but they developed during my teenaged years. All are expensive to treat and it took an emotionally toll on my family.

        And to answer your question, people determine whether or not a life is worth living all the time (I.e. the death penalty). If you read the comments of an article about someone who abused a child or killed someone, you’ll probably find people who say that they’d like to kill that person.

        • As a Social Worker,I have worked with the developmentally disabled and can tell you there are many resources out there to help Parents.A baby is not disposable because it is not “perfect”how many of us are?

          • Matthew Shearin

            I get the feeling that many of these parents who abort are not aborting because their fetus is not perfect. These women likely want a normal child. There is a difference.

          • Amanda Ruth

            So now you are the one to decide what normal is? None of us are normal according to societal standards.

          • Matt S

            I would say normal would be a child with 46 chromosomes and hopefully one with not too many psychiatric disorders. Down Syndrome also comes with a host of medical and mental problems that can be very expensive and time consuming to treat. This is nothing to gloss over.

        • unusualmind

          And people don’t make mistakes when determining the value of a life? Do you really want other people to determine the value of life? And ALL parents go through these. No child is completely healthy or perfect. ALL parents go through a lot of emotional and financial things because of their children. Do you honestly want people determining the value of life based on the financial and emotional effect created by people just living? Because, if we base the value of life on that, we head down an incredibly dark and disturbing road.

        • Amanda Ruth

          So you’re are comparing innocents babies to guilty adults? Not the same thing.

  • Kristine Redio

    Love the translations here. I think you’re spot on~

  • Some of us have relatives or friends with disabilities,so we have seen first hand what it is like to struggle,and how life is difficult at times.

  • Hmm.”Lives are not worth saving if they are too much trouble?Do you know how selfish that sounds?Perfection is an illusion.You can have a so called bright child and put all your hopes into your son and daughter,and they can deeply disappoint you.I know of several highly intelligent individuals,who despite their Parents grooming, ended up working minimum wage jobs,because they didn’t want to go to college.A big disappointment for the Parents,who would have never thought of aborting their child.

    • Matthew Shearin

      But the problem with a DS child is these parents will know from day one that their child will never be able to acheive their goals. For professional parents, I can see how they would view it as a disaster.

  • You are so right!!

  • I had a sibling with a very high IQ,while I was the “average child”,that no one doted over.Well,my highly intelligent sibling never went to college while I went to grad school.You are so right!!

  • What many fail to realize is that many DS children grow up to live normal,or near normal lives.

  • The abortion rate of DS babies is over 90% because of attitudes such as the ones expressed on this page.What other people think matters.Attitudes lead to action.

  • Karla Mendez

    I did not read all these! but i read the comments!
    and i just want to say.. Having a Down Syndrome baby.. is the most beautiful thing i can have in life,,. my son brought me what I most needed, Love!
    my husband and I have spent hard times. but more happiest moments..

    i don’t see wants the difference about a “normal” and “special” kid. Because i also have another baby.. that doesn’t have Down Syndrome.. and both are so intelligent.
    nobody told me that my son has down syndrome, was a surprise to the time of delivery!

    My son was born with heart, kidneys, ears problems. It was my first child, I was only 20 years old. if time goes back, i would not change anything. because I learned many things and appreciate many things i didnt knew that existed!

    love my family .. my husband and especially my two children equally!

    Learn to value life as God gives it to you

  • EmDaley

    Those comments are inhumane, who are expecting too much from a child that hasn’t been born yet. But at the same time, I can see where they’re coming from. I wouldn’t want to spend the rest of my life caring for an eternal child, I need to live my own life as well. I wouldn’t care if my kid wasn’t an over achiever, or had trouble learning, those things can always be helped, with tutors and helping them with homework. With severely disabled kids, everything will never be normal. With a Down Syndrome child, they’ll never marry and have children, that will marry and have children. They’ll never be able to build a life for themselves, they’ll have to be looked after until the day they die, and that person certainly will not be me.

  • ThnkB4uspk

    Wow, I thought they would using reasoning like: it’d be a difficult life for the child, they’d have to be boxed up, kept away from other chilren or robbed of their full life experience…all i heard instead was how difficult it would be for the parents. you know what else would be difficult for a parent? you raise your so called perfect/normal child and and 16 they get into an accident with their teenaged friends, and are now quadrapalegic for the rest of their lives. you gonna kill them then too? sheesh. God gives you difficulty in life for a reason. Just because they dodge a bullet at birth doesnt mean that bullet wont boomerang back around at you. Boom!

  • Sara

    These people are awful. More awful still is people defending them with “it should be a womans choice”. Has feminism really poisened the world so much that it is ok to kill on behalf of a womans choice? Kill for her selfish reasons? It’s sick

  • me

    These people should probably not be parents. What if their child is diagnosed with something after birth? Or maybe their character would change for the better after they raise children. One can only hope. What a lot of pressure to be born into a family with that mindset. Perfection at any cost. How about loving a child because he’s your child?

  • Daphne Cain Baker

    Wow, some of this stuff is hard to listen to. I have four offspring. They are not all perfect. They have some problems, none of which I ever thought I’d have to deal with. One was born with severely deformed feet and legs, clubbed feet, and she’s had to endure many surgeries just so she can walk. She still has problems with her feet, her condition was so severe. Several of my children have dealt with mental health issues including depression, ADHD, Bi-polar disorder, Schizophrenic symptoms, and more. I haven’t had to raise a down syndrome child, but I do understand what it’s like to mourn the loss of my expectations of normalcy in some of these problems with my kids. Even with all the troubles we’ve endured as a family, I can’t imagine discontinuing the life of a child, because they’re not perfect.

  • G Brown

    These people need to see for themselves how much joy a Down syndrome child can bring into their lives. With this mentality, a smart person is more human then a less intelligent one.

  • brandito

    Ahhh, cosmic justice. When my husband and I started having children, we were both very, very pro-choice. My husband stately firmly that if we got pregnant with a child with DS, we would abort and “try again”. We wanted perfect babies, right? All three of our children were perfect, beautiful babies. But two (our oldest and our youngest) have over the years been diagnosed with Autism. Would I choose to abort if I could have tested for Austism? Heck no! These kids have challenges, and we have challenges as a family, sure. But they are the brightest, most creative kids, with the greatest personalities. Autism is a large part of their uniqueness that makes them so wonderful. Having two special needs kids has been the catalyst for me to start my graduate studies in Special Education. For all the people out there who say “well my grandma’s nephew’s cousin’s neighbor had a DS child in 1952 and their life was horrible….” that’s very outdated thinking…. that’s not how things are anymore. I’ve been learning in school about how far kids with disabilities can go when they aren’t being locked up in horrible institutions like they did through most of the 1900s. Give a kid with down syndrome the right help, with parents and teachers who care, and they can do anything you challenge them to!

    • Matthew Shearin

      I understand what you mean, but down syndrome and autism are spectrum disorders when it comes to ability, which means if your child were to be more severly mentally disabled by one of these disorders, what they would be able to learn would be minimal, at best. Knowingly having a disabled child is taking a huge gamble, with everyone.

  • CandyPerfumeGirl

    I cant believe all the comments admonishing these people for not wanting to give birth to and raise a severely disabled child. First of all, it is their choice and it should be their choice. No one has the right to interfere in another person’s reproductive choice and family planning. And if people are not able and willing to take care of a child with Down Syndrome, then they are not able to and I think it is great that they are honest about it, instead of having it, and then neglecting it or not being able to give it what it needs etc. I mean do people prefer that? Caring for a disabled child like that is very taxing – not only financially but also emotionally. And I cant blame people for being honest and not wanting to deal with that. So who are you people to dictate ot anyone what they can and should handle? You dont have to care for the child and pay for its special and expensive medical needs. And you dont have to watch it struggle day in and day out, have the IQ of a 9 year old as an adult, without a future, most likely being forced to work as a grocery packer in the grocery store. You dont have to watch the child not able to perform the most simple tasks and never be able to take care of himself and always be in need of care, 24/7.

    So who are YOU to tell others what they can and cannot do and judge them for not wanting to. If taking care of a severely disabled child is something you would do, then that is your choice, but dont be judging people for not sharing that attitude

    • East Pikeland

      That’s the problem Candy, there is no judgement in the world, and there is no courage either. You’re darn right I’ll judge you – and when you die, you’ll face the ultimate judgement of your actions too.

  • CandyPerfumeGirl

    OMG, the child not “perfect” in their eyes, it is a several disabled child who will grow up to have the IQ of a 9 year old as an adult and will need care its entire life. This is hardly people wanting perfect children, this is people not wanting disabled children who will need care all their lives. Who the hell are you ot judge them as selfish? Would you prefer if they had them and then neglected them and not given them the love and care thye need. It makes me sick to just read your comment – it;s like you are completely clueless as to what these parents will face. Not ot mention what kind of a life will someone have who so disabled. What kind of a quality of life with the best job they can ever do is pack groceries at the store. How selfish is that to do to someone.

    • CailynAlexis

      You were sick reading MY comment? Did you even bother to read the damn article and all those comments that were left by those couples?
      You know, there IS such a thing as adoption. There are many couples out there who will willingly adopt children with down syndrome (or any other disability for that matter). So, no one is actually forcing anyone to raise a DS child.
      If it’s so horrible for a child with disabilities to live, I don’t see what the problem is with just killing them all off. Doing it before they’re born doesn’t make it any better IMO. If we were talking about a four year old here, and the parents decided to just kill him/her because the kid is disabled, would it be “selfish” of me to see that as something sickening? Something that I think should be illegal? But hey, I guess dismembering a helpless, little baby in the womb is perfectly acceptable since it’s at a weaker state and can’t fend for itself (then again, the same thing applies to the toddler, but people would HAVE to care because he/she has already been born).
      There’s a little thing called “unconditional love”. If someone plans on being a parent, and they can’t give that to their child, then they really shouldn’t breed.

      • Matthew Shearin

        The likely reason most women don’t want to give birth and give it up for adotion is most women don’t want to carry the pregnancy for 9 months, go through the pain of childbirth, only to give it away to some strange family.

        • Amanda Ruth

          So why not use birth control?

          • Matt S

            I’m sure many woman do, and when it comes to Down Syndrome many times the pregnancy will be planned but the parents will believe they are unable to provide for a child with those setbacks.

          • MarcAlcan

            So? Make sacrfices. Like everyone else has said. Selfish to the core.
            I will be inconvenienced so I should kill. Maybe we can kill everyone who inconveniences us? What about those that you inconvenience? Those who may have thought the world is better off without you in it? Can they have the right too?

          • Matt S

            You need to understand that everyone doesn’t have those convictions, and when a woman decides to keep a baby with DS, she is obligating her other family members and children, who might not want money, time, and resources taken from them. Women who choose to terminate are not always doing it for selfish reasons.

          • MarcAlcan

            To kill someone in order that you may have your life in your control is always, always selfish.

          • Matt S

            But as I said before, I don’t see how it would be selfish if she terminates because she doesn’t want her DS child to burden her other children, and potentially take needed resources away from them. Many children with Down Syndrome have a whole host of health and mental problems that can be expensive and time consuming to treat; they can also suffer from more severe forms of the disorder, and I don’t see how it would be feasible to a family that is not wealthy and well connected.

          • MarcAlcan

            It is still selfish because she is thinking of only of how it will impact her “nice and comfortable” family.
            You still don’t see how untenable your position is because if having children with Down Syndrome is such a burden and if the aim of life is to be “burdenless” then you are saying that it is okay to kill anyone we find cumbersome. There is no difference then between killing the baby in the womb and outside of it because that is nothing more than geography.

          • Matt S

            But the difference between a growing embryo/fetus in a womb and a newborn, for example, is even though the embryo or early stage fetus is biologically human, it is a simpler organism than the woman or a full term baby, older child, or adult. So I find it to be a measurable difference than mere geography.

          • MarcAlcan

            But the question is not whether it is a simpler “organism” but whether it is a human organism. Every living being proceeds from the simple to the complex. You included.

            And yes, it is mere geography because that baby in the womb is a human being. If not, neither are you.

          • Matt S

            I don’t see why any human organism or tissue by itself should be given any status or value if it’s not already part of a functioning human body. I simply find the concept of person hood goes deeper than the biology of a life form.

          • MarcAlcan

            don’t see why any human organism or tissue by itself should be given any status or value if it’s not already part of a functioning human body.

            So therefore the limb of a toddler has more status than the baby in the womb?

            And “not seeing” counts for nothing if you have no grounds on which to claim it other than personal taste. And should I be so inclined, could equally write that organisms like you should not be given status of a person and I should be allowed to throw you over the cliff if it pleases me, but that would be nothing more than stupid personal judgment like yours.

            I simply find the concept of person hood goes deeper than the biology of a life form.

            Apparently some dumb lawyers think so too, because they have declared a corporation a person and that is not biological.

          • Matt S

            You are missing my point entirely. I never said anything about limbs of a toddler, or violently throwing someone over a cliff. People who are already born and functioning as a human being, baby, toddler, or adult, is not the same thing as a single cell organism like a zygote or a few hundred embryonic cells that don’t have human sentience of any kind, but have the potential to be incorporated into a body.

          • MarcAlcan

            You are missing my point entirely. I never said anything about limbs of a toddler

            Here are your words exactly: “don’t see why any human organism or tissue by itself should be given any status or value if it’s not already part of a functioning human body. “,
            I suppose even after I have highlighted that, it still evades you.
            The baby in the womb IS NOT A PART of a human being. S/He IS THE human being. S/He is is not some limb or hair or appendage of a a human.
            Ergo, since s/he is not just a part of a human then s/he should be given the status of a human being.
            Also, the comment about being throw off a cliff is to address your opinion that just because YOU don’t see, then it should be so.

          • Matt S

            I think you misunderstand what I meant. Even a limb would not be given the status of person hood by itself, event though its tissue is biologically human. As for a growing zygote cell or embryo, it develops into a human body, which is made up of trillions of cells,which are part of the whole. By human organism I meant a single cell zygote, embryonic cells or growing tissue, not a whole body.

          • MarcAlcan

            I am really sorry to say that the level of obtuseness you are displaying here is mind boggling.

            Of course the limb cannot be given the status of a human being BECAUSE IT IS ONLY A PART OF A HUMAN BEING AND NOT THE HUMAN BEING HIM/HER SELF!!

            Your hair is not you so why should it be given the status of a person? BUT THE ZYGOTE IN YOUR MOTHER’S WOMB WAS YOU!!!

            Surely, you at least have the capacity to understand that very, very simple statement. Please try,try, try to exercise the brain before you reply.

          • Matt S

            I don’t know why I even try. The zygote cell has the function to potentially become a human body, but at the present time it is a single cell organism.

          • MarcAlcan

            I don’t know why I even try because you are so obtuse that you can’t even see the stupidity of your argument.
            The zygote is a human being from day dot. It was just not a fully developed human being in the same way that the baby about to be born is not an adult. The only potentiality that the zygote has is to be an adult with an adult body. The toddler has the same potentiality, the teenager has the same potentiality. The potentiality to become bigger and more developed but NOT the potentianlity to be a human being because s/he ALREADY IS from the beginning.

            The zygote is a human being but not an adult human being.
            And once again, when the human being is still a zygote, no one know s/he even exists. It takes weeks before a woman can even tell she is pregnant and when the baby is killed, his/her body is developed.
            You lie to yourself by insisting on keeping the topic on zygotes. You are wilfully lying by talking about zygotes.

          • Matt S

            I started by talking about zygote cells because that is when it starts to develop. We couldn’t seem to agree on person-hood at even that stage.

            While the woman won’t know if she’s pregnant at the zygote stage, yes, it’s important for people, especially lawmakers, to come to an agreement on the concept of person-hood when it comes to the politics of abortion, stem cell research, and birth control. In closing, you don’t need to get so emotional.

          • MarcAlcan

            I started by talking about zygote cells because that is when it starts to develop.

            No it isn’t. This whole discussion was about aborting babies with down syndrome and straight away your argument was that there is nothing wrong with getting rid of a zygote.

            You were formulating your posts along those lines to make anyone reading think that the one being killed is a zygote. You are a liar and you are trying to frame this discussion on false premises.

            We couldn’t seem to agree on person-hood at even that stage.

            And like I said, it is not about personhood but whether it is a human being and every biological textbook says so.

            it’s important for people, especially lawmakers, to come to an agreement on the concept of person-hood

            No it isn’t because law makers don’t get to determine that. Nature does.

            Lawmakers decreed African’s non persons, Nazi’s determined that Jews are non person and law makers declared that corporations are persons. So what lawmakers declared have zero relevance to reality because they don’t get to declare reality.

            In closing, you don’t need to get so emotional.

            When you’ve been talking to someone who you thought had a modicum of understanding and after several explanations the obtuseness only seems to increase, then it is only expected that you will get emotional. Frustrated would be the better word.
            I gave you credit because I thought you are capable of understanding something so simple but over and over you fail to get it.

          • Matt S

            “You lie to yourself by insisting on keeping the topic on zygotes. You are willfully lying by talking about zygotes.”

            A lie is when you deliberately tell a falsehood, and yes, this article was about aborting DS fetuses, but I wanted to start at the beginning of development to see where we stood on this issue. We obviously are going nowhere like this. Good bye.

          • MarcAlcan

            You are correct, it is not an outright lie but the intent was to deceive and to manipulate.

        • MarcAlcan

          Selfishness again. Me, me, me.

          • Matt S

            I was simply responded to what I have observed.

          • MarcAlcan

            And what is observable is the selfishness, self-absorption, self-centredness

    • Amanda Ruth

      What if the child became disabled during the course of their life? Should the parents kill them then?

    • Matt S

      To a certain extent I agree with you. Not wanting a Down Syndrome child is not always about being selfish. Many parents are afraid at how it will effect the dynamics of their family, and their future child with DS should they be severely disabled, as they are obligating others as well.

      • MarcAlcan

        If it is okay to kill someone because of a defect, that means it is okay to kill everyone with a defect. Maybe it is Down Syndrome. How about cleft palate, club foot, etc. Anything that makes us less perfect. Why only the one in the womb. Why not all the adults? Why not those suffering from dementia or alzheimers? Or those who have suffered accidents and caused them to be paraplegic. Where do you draw the line? And what makes you think that you have the right to draw the line?

        • Matt S

          When it comes to using prenatal testing, the doctors would find markers for Down Syndrome early enough in development before the embryo or fetus is fully developed and mentally functioning as a human being, and is living off the woman. For the other examples you gave, these people are fully developed and mentally functioning individuals autonomous of a woman’s body, so I don’t see it to be the same thing. I hope this makes more sense.

          • MarcAlcan

            Is the embryo human or not? If you leave the embryo alone and let it be will it somehow become a dog or cat or any other being rather than a human being?

            If the embryo that was you were chopped up to pieces, would you be here now?

            What you are talking about here is a mere difference of time, of a stage in development.

            A new born baby is not the same as the toddler and the toddler not the same as the first grader or the adult.

            So, if the stage in development is what matters, then it would be okay to dismember a toddler with down’s syndrome.

          • Matt S

            An embryo is biologically human, but it has not developed into a much more complex organism, a human body/being, and as I said before, embryonic cells are still just cells like any other cell in the body. The only thing that separates these cells is its function and shape.

          • MarcAlcan

            Oh really? If it is exactly the same as every other cell in the body, then would hair cells become other than hair cells? Is there such a thing as a fully grown hair cell? Will hair cell start talking and eating and walking? Will skin cells? Will brain cells?

    • MarcAlcan

      Who the hell are you ot judge them as selfish?

      Because it is? They can make decisions about killing other people only because they themselves have been allowed to live. So yes, incredibly, terribly, heinously selfish.
      Perhaps they should have been the ones gotten rid of then there would be less selfishness in the world.

  • CandyPerfumeGirl

    you guys all missing the point. These people are not talking about wanting perfect children, they are talking about not wanting a RETARDED and several disabled child. There is a difference. And they have every right to feel that way and make the choice to not want it. Who are you to tell them otherwise or label selfish and bad people?

    • Kal-Ell

      Exactly Candy!!! I see a lot of Bitching! Judging! & Labeling! but I didn’t see a single person say that they would volunteer to step up & take such a child which is typical of the pro life crowd. If it’s not the decision you would make thats fine. But you have Zero! right to take that decision away from anyone else.

      • Amanda Ruth

        I would if I was eligible by the state.

      • Amy L

        Did you miss the link about the WAITING LISTS for adoption – of ANY child? Disability or no? Everyone deserves the dignity of a family and love and a NAME.
        And, by the way, our society DOES take away our right to kill others – it’s called murder and it’s illegal.
        Where does it end? What age is it no longer o.k. to take away someone’s life?

      • MarcAlcan

        But you have Zero! right to take that decision away from anyone else

        Helloo, we do have the right to take the decision away from murderers. There is no such thing as a right to murder.

    • Amy L

      As a parent of a child with Down syndrome, I can absolutely tell them that KILLING someone that does not meet your expectations is WRONG, SELFISH, EVIL. There is a waiting list for adoption of all kinds of children – including Down syndrome. Our whole family is BETTER because of our daughter. If you had asked us before she was born if we would be o.k. with it or could “handle it”, we would have hesitiated but OH. MY. WORD. Kill her? End her life? NEVER!!!

    • MarcAlcan

      And I suppose Fred Dahmer and Ted Bundy had every right to feel that way as well.

      Who are you to tell them otherwise or label selfish and bad people?

      How about because it is sooooo blatantly obvious?

  • disqus_94P22sEiY4

    Well, I take some issue with the statement that wanting to abort a child is due to our “consumerist culture”. Since human beings have lived, and still now in some tribal and rural societies babies who were born with diformaties and mental disabilities were often taken to the woods and left to die or have their face covered with a wet cloth. Human beings not wanting a child because it’s not what their society values is nothing new and not consumeristic.

  • East Pikeland

    If they have “normal” kids, they better sleep with one eye open if they ever become disabled, ill, or contract a terminal disease, that goes for the spouse of these people too. Better not become disabled or infirm at any time in life, they’ll throw you away like a used tissue.

  • Bob saget

    Let’s put this into simpler terms. What if you were asked if you wanted to: A) live the rest of your life pouring every ounce of effort and money you had into keeping a virus ridden ultra complex computer functional enough for an imaginary technologically incompetent grandmother that would never actually use the computer in the first place, yet she constantly asks you to explain how to do everything over and over. Or B) simply not do it.

    Pretty easy to see why more than 90% choose B.

    • pattyjackson1

      Wow. When you look at a baby, do you see something that is about the same value as a computer?

    • MarcAlcan

      What a pathetic example you gave.
      Firstly, a computer is a machine.
      I am sure that somewhere along the way, the machine that is yourself has broken down before. It just so happened that no one thought to take that machine up a bridge and throw it over.

  • Bob saget

    But it says 90% of parents chose to abort so….. Are 90% of parents bad parents?

    • Matthew Shearin

      Apparently, these parents want to avoid the life-long consequences of raising a child with down syndrome. Everyone doesn’t get a disabled child who is healthy and high functioning.

    • MarcAlcan

      Affirmative

  • Matthew Shearin

    And for you people on here condeming parents who abort, I sure hope you are not the same ones who are going to side against the DS person’s best interest if they have a host of health and mental problems which will need life-long care, and if the parents don’t have the resources to provide for them, the cost goes to the village.

    • MarcAlcan

      Yes, the whole community must help. We can’t let those struggling, struggle by themselves.
      But you see, all those comments is not about that. It’s all about I, Me, My.

      • Matt S

        I was just responding to what I’ve noticed. Many of these pro-lifers seem to want to defund the welfare programs these disabled children and parents will depend on.

        • MarcAlcan

          Huh??? Where in the world do you get that? The pro-lifers are the one’s who support these programs.

          • Matt S

            I know all pro-lifers don’t want to defund these programs but conservative pro-lifers ones seem to want to.

          • MarcAlcan

            That is pure hogwash and you know it.

  • Matthew Shearin

    I admit that all pro-lifers are not callous towards the unborn after birth, but I must admit they do seem to largely side against their best interest after birth if the woman wants to keep her baby. Many pro-lifers do appear to simply want these women to suffer the consequences of their actions, and don’t seem to care. That is just what I have observed.

    • Cynical_Meliorist

      Forgive the late response, Matthew. I’ve been away, and about to be gone for a long while again, but I wanted to give your comment it’s due.

      I do appreciate your sentiment in these regards, but if I may, I’d speculate that much of the perceptions you note are manufactured (mainly by opponents of pro-life policies, the media, etc). This is usually done by creating a strange juxtaposition of such policies used with a backdrop of specifically conservative or religious views (and it’s not to say that those groups don’t represent a fair number in the movement, but not everyone as you note).

      Eventually, it comes down to the oversimplification of pro-life ideals banked against the concept of not having people on welfare, people taking money from the state for nothing, and so forth. The reality is that one can support both positions, compassionately. As tax payers AND good citizens/people, we should in fact strive to have as few people on welfare or “hand out” programs as possible. This doesn’t mean turning them out into the street, as some pro-abortion propaganda would lead us to believe, but by improving the recipients’ station in life so that they’re self sufficient and have zero need for such programs. That, really, is the crux of the matter, and something that is easily within our grasp. Speaking for at least the pro-life people I know, it’s not about hard-line tactics and misguided interpretations of policy, but a genuine concern for both the life of the mother and child, but the quality of life they have after the fact.

      This increase of quality comes through education, through giving a “hand up” rather than a “hand out”, and by communities working together to make sure people in real need are being assisted while promoting positive work ethic and solid educational and job opportunities.

      As the saying goes, when the waters rise in the harbor, all boats are lifted.

      Thank you for the reply, and your patience with regards to my response.

      • Matthew Shearin

        The only other thing I have to say is I never found these views to be manufactured by the pro-choice crowd or media, but is what I myself have noticed from the most influential conservatives who want the unborn to be born but turn around and try to defund or disband the social welfare programs these women would depend on at least for a time, and if the child is disabled with autism or down syndrome, these women will need these social welfare programs for the rest of the child’s life. I just wish I could find more conservatives with a more consistant view.

        • Cynical_Meliorist

          I think if more people were, overall, more consistent with things, the world would be a much better place.

          Personally, I’d like to see as many as is feasible off of welfare and public assistance. Mainly, this would revolve around those who can work but are not currently doing so. For those who are out of work and actively looking, this requires a much different fix than would be necessary for those who are not working and choose not to do so continuously.

          I’ve been hard pressed to find anyone (that didn’t strike me as being off the proverbial rocker) who supported removing people from assistance due to disability and the like. You have to remember that being against the program, as a whole, doesn’t mean turning everyone away from it.

          Thank you for the reply, and I’m glad I could answer a bit faster this time.

  • Matthew Shearin

    While these statistics might be true, there is one thing that bothers me. Whenever I read these articles they rarely if ever document family social- economic means like education level of the parents, income, wealth, church affiliation, etc. What I’m afraid is happening is couples who know they have the means and personality to provide for a DS child are having them since the syndrome is found either before birth or shortly afterwards, and couples who don’t have the means terminate early or give the baby up for adoption.
    If this is happening it will positively skew what most families would say about having a DS child or sibling. In closing, I don’t know if I would say Dawkins is wrong.

    • Tullia_Ciceronis

      My question to you is, would you say that infant euthanasia for a child with DS is appropriate? At what point do you draw the line of when it is acceptable to kill someone who is disabled?

      • Matthew Shearin

        With modern technology, Down Syndrome can be found early in development at around the first trimester, or early second trimester, when it is not a fully developed, psychologically funtioning individual, and is still living off someone else who is, and whose life, and lives of her family, will be affected one way or the other, and if it was found this early I would terminate, or if it was found late in development or after birth, I would place it up for adoption since I wouldn’t have the means to provide for its life-long care.
        In closing, all people with Down Syndrome are not as healthy and high- functioning as you might hear or read about. My cousins’ sister has a severe to moderate version and lives in a nursing home because she could never live anything resembeling an independent or meaningful life. I’m afraid DS advocates are being very selective as what they show people, and there is another side to it.

        • Tullia_Ciceronis

          My little sister will never live anything close to a normal life, but she still finds her life meaningful, despite needing significant assistance with her everyday life. Have you asked your cousin’s sister if her life is meaningful? Chances are her response is very different than what you might expect.

          • Matthew Shearin

            My cousins’ sister with Down Syndrome is severely to moderately disabled by the condition, and is mostly non-verbal, so no one knows what she is thinking, if anything since she can’t usually express herself.
            As for her believing her life is meaningful, or happy, I doubt it. 25 years ago when I was about 8 or 9, my mom used to take my sister and I to our cousins’ parents’ house where Carol, their sister, lived. I still remember my mother telling us Carol, who has Down Syndrome, was jealous that we were normal and stayed in her room when we were over. She didn’t appear to like us. Years later, she ended up in a nursing home with her father where she now lives at 46, since her brothers are in their 70s now and are too old to care for her needs.
            Also, tomorrow, I’m going to her father’s funeral, and now she is all alone. Her brothers have basically abandoned her to the state because they are old themselves and couldn’t take on that responsibility. Carol will likely stay in the nursing home or be taken to an institution for the mentally disabled. It doesn’t always end well. Your sister is very lucky to have such a loving and understanding family.

          • Tullia_Ciceronis

            It’s still wrong to speak for her. Many people who have seen my sister on one of her bad days would easily assume that her life is misery and not worth living, yet those who know her the best know that she finds her life as a whole to be worth living, despite her bad days and her hardships.

          • Matthew Shearin

            I simply based my view on what I could infur based on the situation. When I went to her funeral, she was visibly crying so she could apparently have feelings. I simply have no reason to believe she is happy and plenty of reasons to believe she is not, and now she will be all alone in a nursing home for the rest of her life, all alone, with no one to comfort her.

        • Tullia_Ciceronis

          Why does being fully developed and functional relate to being a person? My little sister has multiple severe medical impairments, which render her incapable of functioning without medication. She could not live on her own. Does that make her not a person? Anastasia, a conjoined twin, lives off her sister Tatiana since her kidneys failed as an infant. Since the twins are joined at the head, they cannot be separated. Is Anastasia not a person? Are either my sister or Anastasia nonpersons who don’t deserve human rights?

          • Matthew Shearin

            While, for example, a new human genome is created at fertilization, and is biologically human, it’s not a fully developed and pychologically functioning individual and is living off someone else who is. My personal view on personhood largely depends on an organism’s ability, a person, to function in this way. I don’t know how bad your sister is affected, but even mentally disabled humans are cognitively sentient, which would make them persons.
            As for the conjoined twins, both of them are equally developed, and is not the same thing as an embyro or fetus living off a woman.

          • Tullia_Ciceronis

            So, in your opinion, would a temporary coma patient not be a person? What about an infant, born in a temporarily comatose state?
            As a disabled woman, I am aware of people functioning at all different levels. Some people need oxygen tanks to breath. Some people need kidney dialysis machines to clean their blood several times a week. Some people need injections of insulin multiple times a day. Some people even need life support machines to survive, like the coma patients that I mentioned earlier. Are such individuals not persons, or do you consider their personhood diminished by their inability to function on their own?

          • Matthew Shearin

            Yes, I would find that a temporary coma patient to be a person, since they are just unconcious and will come to. They are still fully developed and psychologically intact, and will soon wake up.
            Since you said you had a disability, I will tell you mine. I was diagnosed with mild autism ( or aspergers) a couple years ago at 31, which means I have a hard time relating to people and functioning socially, and as a result I’m not happy, but have been able to accept it, and hopefully it won’t disable me too much to where I can’t function when my parents are gone. Maybe this gives me a different perspective on disabilities that are magnitudes worse, like severe autism and down syndrome. I simply wouldn’t want to condem a person to a lifetime with such a disorder – and other people.

          • Tullia_Ciceronis

            I have autism, struggle with severe depression and anxiety, and am physically disabled. I realize that some people may not find my life worth living, but on the whole, I do. That is why I don’t impose my views about whether or not their life is worth living on more severely disabled people. They and only they can be the judge of their own quality of life.

          • Matthew Shearin

            And some people would think the same thing about me, but I do my best to hide my disability, and most people seem to think nothing is wrong.
            One thing neither of us has mentioned yet, however, is how a disabled person can effect the rest of the family if they don’t have the personality or means to take on the resposibility of providing for their life-long care? A woman who willingly decides to bring a child with down syndrome to term will likely be obligating other people too, not just herself, but the rest of the family, her health care, her insurance company, and society’s tax dollars sooner or later. This might be a tough question to ask, and even utilitarian, but it is something women, especially, should think about.

          • Tullia_Ciceronis

            I don’t know what to say except that Adolf Hitler had the same ideology. He killed disabled people in his T-Aktion program because he felt like they cost the German state too much money. And as I suspected, this is not about mercy for you, but about money and getting rid of what you deem to be lives unworthy of life. By your calculations, Medicaid should have let me die, since my care cost the state hundreds of thousands of dollars.

          • Matthew Shearin

            And America also had a eugenics program that would forcibly sterilize and institutionalize the mentally disabled, and from what I have read, they were not exactly human either.
            Second, This debate is about whether or not an embyro or early stage fetus should be considered a person, not if people already born and disabled should get medical care. I meant that if a problem can be found early, women should be given the option to terminate, given what could be at stake.
            And I do support government programs. I’m also on some myself.

          • Tullia_Ciceronis

            Can’t you see the similarities? Disabled people have been historically deemed non-persons due to the fact that our cognitive defects were considered inconsistent with personhood. such justifications were used to deny us our civil rights and even to kill us. Today we deem the unborn non persons because their characteristics seem incompatable with personhood and use that as a justification to kill them.

          • Matthew Shearin

            I didn’t mean to affend you, but I see our views about personhood are to at odds to ever see eye-to-eye on this issue.

          • Tullia_Ciceronis

            I will also point out that some people, due to birth defects, are born without kidneys or other organs. They are not fully developed and cannot survive on their own without advanced medical care. Are they persons?

          • Matthew Shearin

            I think you are missing my point. People without an organ like a kidney can be kept alive, it’s not the same thing as a developing embyro or fetus that still needs to fully develop all organs, most importantly the brain. So to answer your question, technically yes. Just because a person may be missing an organ, most people would consider them a person.

          • sarah5775

            The brain develops very early. Brain waves can be recorded in an embryo at just six weeks. (about 40 days)

          • Matthew Shearin

            From what I have read about brain prenatal development, by the end of the embryonic period, the brain and other organs are ‘ruffed’ in, but the brain’s cortex is the last thing to fully form as late the third trimester, when human conciousness can fully exist. Just because brain waves can be detected that early doesn’t mean it’s aware.

          • Tullia_Ciceronis

            So viability (ability to survive on ones own) seems rather arbitrary to me. A fetus born here in the US at 24 weeks is viable, while a fetus born in Rwanda is not viable until it is almost full-term. So that would make the US fetus a person at 24 weeks, while the Rwandan fetus would not be a person until 36 weeks. Is that rational? Why should something as arbitrary as the medical technology available in your area determine something as important as personhood?

          • Matthew Shearin

            That may be true, but the reason a fetus born around 24 weeks in America has a better chance of surviving is because we have better medical technology to keep it alive, and from what I’ve read, many times, if it survives, it can be disabled physically and mentally because it hasn’t finished developing.
            The only difference is we have the abillity to keep it alive earlier than Rwanda can, but that doen’t mean it’s more developed. Human development will be the same regardless where you live, but advances in medical technology will allow you to keep it alive earlier than more primitive cultures can.

          • Matthew Shearin

            The only thing I have to say about that is a fetus born at 24 weeks in America has a better chance of surviving than in Rwanda because the US has better medical technology to keep it alive, but a fetus born in both places follows the same rate of development.

        • Tullia_Ciceronis

          Let me give you another analogy-let’s say that youve inherently valuable Poloriod that has not developed yet, although youve already taken the picture. It will develop, given time and the right environment. Would you not find it objectionable if I destroyed that photograph and said that it didn’t really matter, because it was only a grey smudge, and that only when the photograph could be clearly seen on the film is when its destruction is wrong?

          • Matthew Shearin

            First off, I don’t see how a poloroid could be inherently valuable, but let me respond to your other objection. While the picture may be taken, it is not already developed into a photograph, so it wouldn’t be normal or logical for me to call it a picture if it hasn’t already developed into one, and if I found something to be wrong with the film and I threw it out, it’s not the same thing as throwing out a fully developed picture. It only had the potential of becoming a picture.

          • Tullia_Ciceronis

            Interesting. At what point in development would you say that we become persons? Some philosophers honestly believe that infants are not persons, since they are not developed enough to have full self-awareness and the ability to think rationally, two things that distinguish human beings from other species. Why do you think that personhood begins late in the second trimester when in fact the things that make us uniquely human are not present until we are toddlers?

          • Matthew Shearin

            And that is one reason why the abortion debate is so contraversial; people disagree as to when a person becomes a person, but a good time, I find, to at least respect it as a person is sometime around the early thrid trimester when it can be relatively known for sure that it’s fully develped and can sense what’s going on around it. However, if even at that stage if it endangers the woman’s life, I do believe her rights to live should take precedence.

          • Tullia_Ciceronis

            Also, what is interesting to me is that undeveloped Polaroids are almost always referred to, at least among the people I’ve talked to, as actual photographs, not potential photographs, because the chemical reaction that created them has already occurred, and nothing more needs to be added to them other than time and the proper environment in order for the picture to become visible.

          • Matthew Shearin

            That might be easy to say since so few actual steps need to be taken to produce the photograph, but a better analogy to prenatal development could be between a developing embyro/ fetus and a house or building being put together over a period of several months. The wood, wire, switches, pipe, brick, and other componets, are analogous to the various types of cells that make up a body.
            Slowly over a period of months, the house’s components, “cells” are being put together and slowly becoming more and more of a house as time goes on, and it wouldn’t be reasonable to consider it an actual house until it is largely put together, and functioning as a house. If for some reason the parts were defective (or the owner changed their mind and decided not to build) relatively early in development and the parts were torn down and thrown away, it would be more reasonable to say components were (“cells”) not the house itself, but simply parts that could have been incorporated into the house. Does this make more sense?

          • Tullia_Ciceronis

            Except that embryos are not constructed, they develop. Nothing needs to be added to the embryo after fertilization other than nutrition and the proper environment for it to grow into an adult human being, while constructing a house involves putting together many different parts.

          • Matthew Shearin

            I know the difference, but I thought it would be a better analogy than a photograph being developed since so many more steps go into a house’s creation.
            Another analogy I like to use is a sunflower seed. It contains the biological information in the seed’s plants cells to create a flower, but it wouldn’t be normal for me to say it is a flower if it hasn’t already developed into one. If I was eating one, I would never say I was eating a flower, but a seed that had the potential to be a flower.

          • Tullia_Ciceronis

            A flower is defined as the reproductive organs of an adult plant. A seed is defined as an embryonic member of its species. Saying that a flowering plant seed is exactly like saying that an embryo is not an adult. It is not at all like saying that an embryo is not a person.

          • Matthew Shearin

            I just don’t see why embyonic cells, for example, should be considered a person. Even though they are cells and would develop into a person given enough time, it’s not normal to call any kind of human cells a person if they are not yet incorporated into a body, or to call flower cells a flower if they are not already part of a flower. The furture is not written.

          • Tullia_Ciceronis

            “Traditional ways of
            classifying catalog animals according to their adult structure. But, as J. T.
            Bonner (1965) pointed out, this is a very artificial method, because what we
            consider an individual is usually just a brief slice of its life cycle. When we
            consider a dog, for instance, we usually picture an adult. But the dog is a
            “dog” from the moment of fertilization of a dog egg by a dog sperm. It remains
            a dog even as a senescent dying hound. Therefore, the dog is actually the
            entire life cycle of the animal, from fertilization through death.” (Gilbert,
            Scott F. Developmental Biology. 6th
            edition. Southerland, MA: Sinauer Associates, Inc., 2000.)

          • Matthew Shearin

            And this is the main problem when it comes to the personhood debate. People are going to disagree about when an embyro or fetus becomes a person. Some people believe it becomes a person at conception and others when it becomes a more evolved life form. I don’t see how we will ever see eye-to-eye on this issue.

          • Tullia_Ciceronis

            “We talk of
            human development not because a jumble of cells, which is perhaps initially
            atypical, gradually turns more and more into a human, but rather because the
            human being develops from a uniquely human cell. There is no state in human
            development prior to which one could claim that a being exists with
            not-yet-human individuality. On the basis of anatomical studies, we know today
            that no developmental phase exists that constitutes a transition from the
            not-yet-human to the human.”

            “In short, a fertilized egg (conceptus) is already a human being.” – , Brian
            Freeman, The Ontogenetic Basis of Human Anatomy: The Biodynamic Approach to
            Development from Conception to Adulthood, North Atlantic Books, June 2004. pp
            7,8

  • Casper

    this article is making all those people look evil when they are in
    fact making the right decision by aborting their retarded babies
    down syndrome kd

  • Nikki Lee

    Al Gore. McCain, Romney and John Kerry shall be put to death.

  • Zev TheClusterLizard

    Why do I get the feeling that this article chose only the worst quotes possible (assuming these quotes are even real)?

    • sarah5775

      As I have provided the exact page numbers and all info on the book they are taken from, you can go and look them up yourself.

  • Reese Daniel

    We already have “tards” for Presidents so I don’t know why they don’t just keep their Downs babies! I’m sure it would be a massive improvement over our current leaders. ; }

  • sarah

    I didn’t even have the amino. That in itself carries a risk of miscarriage. I am pretty sure those willing to take the risk would be more likely to choose to have an abortion if their child had downs.

  • Alex

    I am 24 and I have a 2 year old she’s wonderful and perfect now I’m being told my unborn child could have down syndrome I was caught off guard by this I am onexcited of those people who believe this world would be better without retards I hate mentally challenged people can’t stand to be in the same room with them I truly see them as a plague that being said I have told my wife how I feel about it she has told me before that she is 100% pro life so what I’m trying to do is get it were once our test come back if the child has down syndrome when it is born I want it gone to be taken away and I don’t care what happens but I don’t want it to have my last name anyone know someone who can help me get this set up because I don’t want to have to change someone diaper till their 40

  • John Doe

    Just because a couple wants to adopt a retarded baby doesn’t mean that a woman has to give birth to one.

  • Open_minded726

    How about this one before you start judging everyone who has aborted a baby with severe chromosomal abnormalities . A single mother who already has 3 children who receives state benefits, and is already working 2 jobs to support her family, finds out she will have a child who will never be able to support themselves, and will be severely disabled making that decision! Who agonizes over the FACT that child WILL BE teased by most other children in school, and treated different by EVERY person he or she comes into contact with weather it be positive or negative. Not to mention the risks of developing other issues like Leukemia or other types of cancer, and the child most likely outliving their parent ( as women over 35 are at higher risk!)

  • Mike Crognale

    Suppose these “parents” get a perfect child who then suffers permanent brain damage somehow. Would they be in favor of killing the child then? I’ll say it again. Any woman who wants an abortion can have -one-. Afterwards she and the male involved must be irreversibly sterilized.

  • Michelle

    What about the parents?????? Did either one of them become President? Maybe they should be terminated as well, because they just didn’t measure up to expectations!!!!!!!

  • mjeanns

    The ‘me me me’ people cannot follow the Golden Rule, cannot think outside the box, make false assumptions, prejudge, and cannot consider that life is created by God.
    Better if they never become parents, because their children would follow their poor example!

  • Sarah

    I’m 16 years old and I got a learning disability. I can’t read very well and i’m not good at math at all. I’m doing 1st grade math level and 4th grade reading level. I don’t know my multiplication, adding and subtracting facts and I don’t know how to count money yet. I don’t work and i still live with my parents house. My mom and dad still takes care of me. But I’m very a nice girl though. do you think it’s ok for my parents to abort me?

  • brisonc3

    Some have said those making “judgemental” comments about these parents with discriminatory attitudes are being labelled unfairly and those that say they shouldn’t be killed should volunteer to raise the children themselves. NO, this would then be giving in to discriminatory attitudes and legitimize their bias and bigotry against these children. “I want children; just not THOSE children” is a statement of discrimination, not one of love or tolerance or affection. Such people don’t deserve to raise any child.

    Why should others step up to take them? There is no right to a perfect child which means free of Downs or retardation. Parents who refuse to love and claim and care for such children, but would accept and love children without such conditions are judgmental, with a discriminatory and bigoted attitude and need counseling and education to help them learn how to care for their child with the condition the child has, not termination of the child to try again, which is what they are asking for. It’s discrimination in the most classic sense and discrimination against the handicapped is band by our Constitution as a violation of the 14th Amendment. People to assault and kill someone with this condition can be charged with a homicide motivated by bias, meaning a hate crime so to say this isn’t a serious issue regarding the attitude of these parents is astounding.

    “Some just aren’t ready to handle raising a child like this.” Then get them ready or more appropriately such parents should get themselves ready, not demand the ability to kill their child and try again.

    This child would have parents and the parents are obligated to accept a child regardless of condition. To not do this is a very discriminatory attitude and one that is banned by Federal law “The Americans with Disability Act” which says discrimination based on handicap which includes conditions such as Down’s is illegal.

    You can reply, “look it’s legal not to accept these kids and to kill them in the womb and some just can’t handle it”. Fine, then allow other individuals the right escape the outcome of choices made with the excuse of “I can’t handle it” without judgement or comment.

    In many middle east countries female fetuses are killed for gender. No judgement or comment and no calling for them to change their laws. It’s a personal decision that is none of your business.

    “Gender is not a defect” and neither is having Down’s or being retarded. It’s just a fact of life from Nature that the child can’t do anything about.

    Such refusals to accept and love one’s children in this regarding is intolerance, discrimination and bigotry no matter how one tries to defend it. No one has the right to a perfect child which includes being free of Down’s or retardation.

  • MarcAlcan

    Self-absorption. It’s always the reason. Not the so much blah blah blah.

  • MarcAlcan

    Hey, if s/he gets to be president then s/he can kill more. Or validate the parent’s lifestyle.

  • MarcAlcan

    Euthanasia.

  • MarcAlcan

    Compassion? Only if the likes of the Nazi exterminators can be said to be compassionate.

  • MarcAlcan

    So why are you writing here. Why should we care what you think?