For the past several weeks the nation has been absorbed with the George Zimmerman trial in Florida, which ended Saturday with a "not guilty" verdict after much evidence and testimony was presented in court. In recent days another trial has been taking place involving an unborn child who was facing the death penalty for the cultural violation of having an extra chromosome.
On July 8 I received an email originating from the Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Gainesville, Va., stating: "There is a couple in another state who have contacted an adoption agency looking for a family to adopt their Down Syndrome unborn baby. If a couple has not been found by today they plan to abort the baby."
I immediately called the church and was overwhelmed with joy to hear that hundreds of people already had called to adopt this child, and the phones had not stopped ringing! I thanked God for this incredible outpouring of love for the most precious gift God has given us -- life. This unborn child had committed no crime but had been targeted for termination for not meeting the criteria of "normal and healthy" by a culture that classifies certain unborn children as "defective" and eliminates them.
Unlike the highly publicized Zimmerman trial, this proceeding had very little media coverage, even though this child was obviously and completely innocent. Thank God a jury of more than 1,000 people rendered a "not guilty" verdict and sentenced this child with Down syndrome to life. Last I heard, the adoption agency had narrowed the number of prospective parents to three.
Some societies identify, target and eliminate an unborn child for the violation of being female. As prenatal genetic testing rapidly advances, how many other unborn children who violate misguided cultural mandates for normalcy and perfection also will be identified and eliminated for the offense of having autism, depression, ADHD, brown eyes, shortness ... the list goes on!
My beautiful daughter Chloe was born in 2003 with the incredible gift of having Down syndrome, and she has done nothing but shine light, love and eternal hope into this lost world. Over 10 years the evidence I have gathered and observed leads me to the verdict that Chloe never will intentionally hurt anyone and is not capable of criminal intent or malice. Why then are some 90 percent of children diagnosed prenatally with Down syndrome given a death sentence without ever receiving a trial?
Isn't it time we start to examine the evidence about the silent eugenics movement against unborn children whose only wrongdoing is they have an extra chromosome, are female or are not viewed as "normal." Would there be media coverage and outrage if a prenatal test for homosexuality were developed and then used by some people to identify and eliminate these unborn children? If we can judge, convict and eliminate a human being prenatally, then why not make a postnatal judgment once the person can be classified as "defective."
We can all look in the mirror and see a "defective" person, which should lead us to ask: Who is next?
Kurt Kondrich gave up a career as a police officer to advocate for children with disabilities. He lives in Upper St. Clair and blogs at ChloesMessage.blogspot.com.