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Down Syndrome: Let Me Count the Ways


People feel obligated to abort Down Syndrome babies that haven’t even been born yet. Numerous studies have indicated 90% of these children have been aborted. Children diagnosed with Spina Bifida are aborted 64% of the time, and at least 26 abortions on children with cleft lips or palates from 2002-2009 in the United Kingdom have occurred.

Bottom line, disabled citizens are human beings worthy of protection. But this sounds like it is right out of the 1930’s Nazi Germany. Some have obviously come to the conclusion that these kids are not “worthy of life.” One has to wonder who has deemed these ‘life-worthy’ deciders to be God?

By the outbreak of WWII in 1939, Germany had sterilized an estimated 400,000 people. However, in 1940 the need for hospital beds for wounded soldiers prompted a better solution for “lives not worth living.” Psychiatrists and doctors identified over 70,000 mental patients who fit the bill. They were given carbon monoxide in extermination centers at psychiatric hospitals.

Never mind that Down Syndrome babies can possibly lead a normal life. Never mind that a Down prognosis is usually made with the child in the womb, and can be wrong. In fact, most families with a Down member found Down Syndrome is a positive. You will find a full 99% of adults with Down say they are happy with their lives. You’re not likely to find anything close to 99% with normal adults.

In humans, more than 300 billion DNA base pairs are contained in a nucleus of every cell. In medical-speak, having “trisomy” (“tri,” or “three”) means having three copies of a chromosome instead of the normal two. Trisomy, usually having delayed development and intellectual disabilities, comes in a variety of combinations, with three common ones.

The most common is Down Syndrome, also known as Trisomy 21, has an abortion rate of about 90%. A person would have 3 copies of Chromosome 21 instead of 2. The incidence of Down is around 1 in every 480 births. Characteristics may include outwardly slanted eyes, and/or relatively short arms or legs.

The second most common is Trisomy 18, also known as Edwards Syndrome. A person would have 3 copies of Chromosome 18, with an incidence of 1 in every 1600 births. Severe defects include those of the kidneys, ureters, heart, lungs, and diaphragm. *

The last common trisomy, Patau Sydrome, is typically known as Trisomy 13. It has 3 copies of Chromosome 13 instead of two, and occurs in one in every 4000 births. Severe characteristic include an opening in the skull, or malformations of part of the brain.

It should be remembered any trisomy is usually characterized by an additional chromosome, giving that person 47 instead of 46. More facts can be seen at changes in chromosome number or size from a chromosome home reference chart.

It is true that Maternal age (women over 37) are more likely to have babies with chromosomal disorders. With older men (over 50) research tentatively suggests are more likely to father babies with chromosomal disorders, and studies indicate women who’ve had four babies have a slightly increased risk of any subsequent babies having a chromosomal disorder.

For Trisomy 21 (Down), 1/480 is not that small. How many have been aborted that were diagnosed as having Down Syndrome? How many were diagnosed in error?

Genetic changes are always a likelihood for any population. If they occur in more than 1% of the population, they are common enough to be considered normal variation of the DNA, or “polymorphisms.” They are responsible for most of the normal differences in people ( e.g., eye color, hair color, blood type, etc…).

Today, we kill as many Down kids as possible. Why put parents through turmoil? How about handicapped individuals who are no longer deemed productive to society? With Obamacare, those individuals will likely be deemed unworthy of additional drug therapy, because they are likely to die sooner than later. The entire plethora of characteristics (hair color, eye color, blood type, I.Q., etc…) is now on the decision table.

We’re already treading on a similar Nazi path of 1934. With the re-election of Obama in less than a year, that path will come. We have the power to change that. If we don’t, there is no return.

A former Chemical Engineer, Kevin Roeten enjoys riding the third rail of journalism: politics and religion. He is a Guest Columnist for the Asheville Citizen-Times, and the Independent (Ohio), writes for numerous blogs, is an amateur astronomer, and delves into scientific topics.

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