Dear Mr. Adams,
I am going to give you the benefit of the doubt. I am going to assume that you wrote the article entitled “Blood test for Down’s ‘could save 300 babies’ lives a year'” over a bottle of wine, late at night, thrashing it out to hit a deadline. Surely, it is only in those circumstances that you could possibly have chosen such inappropriate wording [in the original article, this has now been changed] which makes this one of the most offensive articles I have ever had the misfortune to read. You wrote with no thought to your audience, no thought to the families who might be reading it. Families like my own.
I find it deplorable that men like Professor Kypros Nicolaides exist in this world. His project to “eradicate Down’s syndrome” doesn’t differ too much from Hitler’s attempts, however somehow his stab at modern eugenics is more palatable because the babies are being terminated in utero.
I would be utterly delighted if you reported that someone had been able to eradicate cancer. That would be something to celebrate in my eyes, but to eradicate Down’s syndrome is to eradicate PEOPLE, human beings like my 2 year old daughter.
Individuals like you and Nicolaides are steering our society to become less accepting of my daughters condition. My daughter who is here because my husband and I created her, in love, and because we want her to be here. You have no idea how many families read your article and felt like you are making the choice for them… who is to say that a positive result would cause a family to terminate? We didn’t. Some families are capable of unconditional love; apparently this is an alien concept to you. You think it’s positive that Nicolaides might “eradicate Down’s syndrome” which makes you no better than the man who is trying to rid this world of babies like mine. The thing is, you make a sweeping assumption that all families feel the same as you, well they don’t. Badly done.
It would serve you well to choose your words a little more carefully next time. An apology wouldn’t go amiss either. My daughter deserves one, as do I, and so do all the other families who love an individual with Down’s syndrome.
UPDATE UPDATE UPDATE – An apology, thank you Stephen!