It's depressing enough to know that over 90% of prenatally diagnosed babies with Ds are terminated. I wasn't aware of that number before I had Finn, and since I've become aware of it, I still have a hard time wrapping my head around it. To know, however, that there are people in the world who liken persons with Ds to animals, who seem to truly believe that people with Ds should not be taking up space on the earth, and who go out of their way to spread a whole lot of hatred and misinformation . . . well, it all just leaves me feeling fired up and rather defeated at the same time. Is this the world my son is going to grow up in?
There is this notion that people with Down syndrome suffer. I don't believe that they suffer any more or less than us "regular folks," except in this regard: prejudice, ridicule, hatred. And what the hell is up with these people? What has led them to become so filled with intolerance and devoid of compassion? Are they afraid of something? Because you would think that a person who is comfortable and secure with themselves would live and let live. Have these people been traumatized by some past attack by a mob of people with Down syndrome? Not likely. I'm only guessing, but I would lay money on betting that just about every person who has such strong feelings against people with Down syndrome have never actually had first-hand interaction with a person with Ds. I would bet that their opinions are based on things they've seen from a distance and outdated things they've read - in other words, ignorance.
Since when did only "perfect" babies become acceptable? Why do we live in an age of disposable babies? Anyone who has read my blog for any length of time knows that I am atheist, and therefore these are not religious or even moral judgments on my part. I am simply a human being who believes that all human life has value.
Every person who becomes pregnant is taking a chance on what kind of baby they will give birth to. And even "perfect" babies are not without risk. There is no guarantee that a baby born healthy and "normal" will not some day contract some terrible illness that will leave them handicapped in some way. There is no guarantee that that perfect baby won't one day be involved in a car accident that will leave him or her brain injured. There is no guarantee that that rosy-cheeked, healthy baby won't someday become addicted to drugs and lead a life of crime and end up in jail, draining taxpayer money.
No baby comes with a guarantee. So why is it that babies born with their problems up front are so deeply rejected by some people?
I have to believe that people who hold these horrible opinions, people who spread the sort of garbage that's in that blog post, are aberrations. I have to believe that the majority of people are good, that they believe that my son's life is worth living, that he is a valuable human being who deserves kindness, compassion, and respect. To believe otherwise would be unbearable.