wMay 9, 2007


I really don't have time to write an entire blog post, which is sad, because I have things to say. So I guess I'll just pick one and go with it (and close one of my open tabs in my web browser).

Antoine sent me a link to this article, which you should read. The premise is that the population of people with Down syndrome is dwindling because when pregnant mothers find out they have such a child, 9 times out of 10, they abort it. Fewer people with Down syndrome means those that have it have less of a chance to socialize, and for parents to network with one another. It also becomes more difficult for them to lobby for funding for things like scientific research.
I find it incredibly sad that 90% of pregnant women who get a positive test for Down syndrome babies abort their babies. I get really disgusted when people think they can play God. Especially if you want to have a child - but what? Not that child? There are conservative Christians who have said that if there was a way to find out whether or not their child was gay, they would abort their baby. What kind of a society is this, where we can decide which babies do and do not deserve because of their genes? Their genes which we give them? 90%. What the fuck.
So, let me ask you, blog readers - if you or your significant other became pregnant and you knew the child had Down syndrome, would you want/get an abortion?

Current Music: the fan, bringing cooler air into my room


scribbled mystickeeper at 10:57 PM

Choosing to have a child with severe mental and physical problems is a moral atrocity. There's no way to get around the fact that Down syndrome causes suffering in everyone involved, especially the child. The parents who support bringing more people burdened with this illness into the world only want to extend their and their children's suffering to everyone else. They should be named for what they are - evil.

Every child should be loved and valued - but a fetus is not a child until he or she is born - and what kind of perverted monster do you have to be to want children to suffer their entire life? Only the religious dogma behind the hypocritical "culture of life" is capable of sinking people to this level.

By Blogger David Veksler, at 11:39 PM, May 09, 2007  

I feel like you haven't had much experience with people who do have Down syndrome, if you are capable of thinking that their lives are defined by suffering. One of my co-workers has Down syndrome, and I was a part-time caretaker last summer for someone with Down syndrome. Having spent a lot of time around both of them, I would say that they are two of the happiest people I've ever met. Did you read the article? The girl with Down syndrome said, "I just want you to know, even though I have Down syndrome, I'm okay."

Wanting to bring someone into this world, embracing who they are no matter their capabilities, is evil? What else should we do? Should people with other pre-determined illnesses not be born? Should anyone who is determined by their genes to have to endure some suffering not be born? Bullshit.

Deciding whether or not a fetus is or isn't a child is a moral issue, and frankly I'm appalled that you would slap me in the face with that you would refer to me as a "perverted monster" for considering a fetus to be life. It's what I believe, so piss off.

By Blogger Jackie, at 6:53 AM, May 10, 2007  

David, you gave me a lot to think about. I stumbled about this for a while and just thought about what you stated. The problem I'm having with your arguments though (which Jack kind of mentioned) is the definition of suffering. You say the people around you and the child shouldn't be made to suffer. But don't we all suffer in some sort of way? I'm not sure where my life will lead me, but I may develop Alzheimer’s in my 60's. No offense, I would gladly take the "suffering" and hope to God my family will allow me that luxury as I would let them to enjoy 60 years of "full life" and 20 some with the "debilitating disease."

Schizophrenia develops when a person is a young adult. If we have a test that determines that person will develop it around that time, should we rob that person of 20 years of life without the disorder? I would beg to differ.

There are some terrible things in this world that happen to good people. We are now getting better at finding out what's going on with a person before that child comes out of the womb. However, we are playing a very dangerous game? What happens when we start defining people who have genetic predisposition to obesity for example as a person who will cause "suffering to that person and burden others?" Should we kill off that fetus?

What if a genetic test shows that a person is a homosexual, should we kill that person off because of the suffering that person will have and the suffering of others?

What if a genetic test shows a person who has minimal intelligence, not low enough to be retarded, but not exceptional, should we kill that person off?

This is a start of something that in my humble opinion will make the human race less diverse. Germany tried to do this and they didn't last long. Look at China and India, many of their citizens will abort their fetuses because they only want men in there families. I guess the females will suffer too much in those countries and the people around would have just too much to handle with that female. However, now the governments have to deal with way too many males and not enough females.

I'm sorry, David, but if that makes me a "perverted monster," to disagree with you, I gladly accept that label. You don't know if scientist will come up with a cure, you don't know how that person Down's syndrome will positively affect people around them. People with Downs from my experience are happy and their family, even though burdened, is also happy people.

I know there are some other more horrible and disfiguring genetic disorders out there. However, how can we define suffering and who the hell are we to make that choice of who should live and who should die?

By Blogger Ogre, at 9:01 AM, May 10, 2007  

My position is a bit less radical that David's:

I already support abortion-rights in cases where there's no excuse. I'm not going to turn around and say that I'm only pro-choice if the mother is ignorant.

In some countries it's illegal for a doctor to inform the parents of the child's sex before delivery. I don't think we need that sort of law here, but if we did I don't think I'd be opposed to it.

The Nazi-reference doesn't fit. There's a big difference between the government sterilizing disabled people and a mother choosing whether or not to have a particular child.

By Blogger Antoine, at 9:23 AM, May 10, 2007  

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