Every human life has value because it’s created in the image of God. That includes the lives of people who are born with Down syndrome. That is—unless you live in Iceland.
According to the advocacy group Down Pride’s appeal to the United Nations, virtually every Icelandic, unborn child prenatally diagnosed with Down syndrome since 2008 has been aborted.
Every. Single. One.
Because of the country’s strong push for mothers to get prenatal screenings, Iceland’s abortion rate for unborn babies with Down syndrome is almost 100 percent.
In the last nine years, an estimated TWO Icelandic children have been born with Down syndrome each year. In most cases this is because of a faulty testing result.
The prenatal screening consists of an ultrasound, blood test and takes into consideration the mother’s age. The test, called the Combination Test, then uses those factors to determine whether the fetus will have a chromosomal abnormality. The most common result is Down syndrome.
But as actress Patricia Heaton reminds us, “Iceland isn’t actually eliminating Down syndrome. They’re just killing everybody that has it. Big difference.”
Down syndrome is a chromosomal disorder in which a person is born with an additional chromosome—47, when most babies are born with 46.
There is no way to prevent a child from developing Down syndrome as it’s caused by an error in cell division rather than something within human control.
Still, Iceland and surrounding countries—all with national healthcare systems—are pushing prenatal screenings and confusing the treatment of a chromosomal disorder with the eradication of a people group altogether.
As a very casual and disturbing CBS News article put it, “Iceland is on pace to virtually eliminate Down syndrome through abortion.”
Holland is expected to be “Down Syndrome free” by 2030. Denmark and Great Britain have taken on similar statistics with Down syndrome abortion rates ranging anywhere from 90-98 percent.
What’s worse is, America doesn’t fall too far behind. According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, the U.S. average for Down syndrome termination rates falls somewhere between 67 and 90 percent.
It’s important to note that none of these countries have governments that enforce the abortion of babies with pre-diagnosed Down syndrome. But many of the countries in question—specifically Iceland—DO require doctors to inform expecting mothers of the prenatal testing option, as well as termination options, which are legal even past 16 weeks gestation, should signs of disability exist. That includes Down Syndrome.
Their justification is sickening. A hospital in Iceland told CBS News:
“We don’t look at abortion as murder. We look at is as a thing that we ended. We ended a possible life that may have had a huge complication…preventing suffering for the child, and for the family. And I think that is more right than seeing it as murder—that’s so black and white. Life isn’t black and white. Life is gray.”
And what it all comes down to is this: Having fewer people with Down syndrome will save governments a lot of money. Patrick Willems, pediatrician and CEO of a Belgian lab (Gendia) that offers the Harmony Nip-test for Down syndrome, says, “A child with Down syndrome costs 1 to 2 million Euros… Preventing the birth of 50 babies with Down syndrome will offset the costs of fully implementing the Nipt (Non-invasive prenatal testing) into Dutch public healthcare.”
What happens when governments start to realize how much money they could save if they eliminate diseases like autism, dementia, cerebral palsy and heart defects? What if a screening test for other diseases, or even mental health issues, is designed? What kind of world are we living in where some of the most jovial, kind and accepting people on this planet are not valued enough by our own governments for their lives to matter?
The growing popularity of governments adapting such systems suggests that children—people—with Down syndrome simply aren’t worth the investment.
But their lives DO matter.
Every single person who lives and breathes on this earth was created in God’s image, with a purpose. That includes every single unborn baby in Iceland, Holland, Denmark, Great Britain, America and BEYOND, who deserve a fighting chance at LIFE.
Killing the vulnerable does not progress the eradication of a disease. It merely allows governments and doctors to take the place of God, while robbing future generations of the lives that were Divinely crafted for them.
“Iceland is not eradicating a disease, it’s eradicating a people, and CBS News seems to be celebrating that fact.”
FRC President Tony Perkins joins America’s Newsroom with Shannon Bream to discuss a new report that shows Iceland is on pace to “virtually eliminate Down syndrome” through abortion.
Posted by Family Research Council on Wednesday, August 16, 2017