…is an epidemic. This University Observer (a student paper in Ireland) article begins by discussing prenatal screening and seems to advocate against terminations of cognitive defects stating,
…people with Down’s syndrome often live full and happy lives.
Those with Down’s syndrome today can expect access to education, employment and acceptance by the community – Ireland’s hosting of the Special Olympics opened the world’s eyes to just how capable these so-called “disabled” people are at living life.
But no, the author is actually setting the stage for her promotion of prenatal screening and abortion access.
However, people with Down’s syndrome only experience a high quality of life if they have fully-committed, loving parents who dedicate vast amounts of their time and energy to looking after their children. This poses a huge challenge.
If parents are financially secure enough to go private [with health care], their children may receive the special care they need. But these days, many Irish families are far from wealthy and the thought of taking responsibility for a child with Down’s syndrome may be too much for some prospective parents.
Another unavoidable question is who will look after their child when the parents pass away? People with Down’s syndrome can indeed lead independent lives, but many need a certain amount of care and assistance.
But surely pre-natal screening for conditions such as Down’s syndrome should at least be an option in modern Ireland, as it is in the UK? Many people argue that pre-natal screening could be extremely valuable to Irish families, as it would allow parents and siblings to prepare themselves emotionally and financially for the birth of a child who will require special care. Others believe that there’s no point to these tests being available here, as abortion is currently illegal in this country.
It seems ludicrous that abortion still isn’t legal in Ireland[…]
Although the real figures are far from certain, currently about 7000 women are thought to travel from Ireland to the UK for abortions each year. If antenatal Down’s syndrome screenings became available, it’s likely that this number would increase.
It’s tragic to see such a poor and lazy argument being made at the university level. Summary: Down syndrome children are capable of leading full and happy lives. These children will however require more resources than others. Solution: antenatal screening and legalizing abortion.
C’mon students, where is your “can do”attitude? Strap on your runners and get those resources out there. Here, I’ll even get you started. CLICK HEREby