In December 2017, Ohio passed a law that protects preborn babies with Down syndrome from abortion. This law was later blocked in court before it went into effect. It is a unique law that makes sure that some of our most vulnerable citizens, part of the nation's largest minority group, are spared from the tragedy of abortion.
As expected, the abortion business is fighting against this measure and blocked it before the law went into effect claiming that Ohio cannot "prohibit any woman from making the ultimate decision to terminate her pregnancy before viability." Surprisingly one mother is joining their fight.
In an article on NBC Think, Holly Christensen, a mother of a child with Down syndrome, argues that women should have the option to abort their children with Down syndrome. "I oppose bills like these because they do nothing to improve the lives of people like my daughter," Christensen said. "Instead they use children like mine to chip away at my reproductive rights—and hers."
With all due respect to Ms. Christensen, she could not be more wrong.
Bills like the one in Ohio will help protect her daughter's future, not take away from it. Abortion has given women the option to determine what life is worthy of life, and that ability has had a detrimental impact on the way that individuals with disabilities are perceived by society. They are no longer a population group that deserves protection or support—instead they're a group that has become at risk for abortion as a method of treatment.
That may not have been the intention, but that is what occurred.
This type of mentality also isn't new. It's been seen before in the policies and actions of the Nazi Party in Germany. History tells us that the first minority group targeted for extermination wasn't the Jews, but children under the age of two with disabilities. This program preceded the final solution to the Jewish question, also known as the Holocaust, by about two years.
That is why bills that protect preborn babies with Down syndrome are so important. The abortion rate in the United States is at least 67% for children prenatally diagnosed with Down syndrome in the womb, and the population of those living with Down syndrome in the U.S. has decreased by around 30%.
As the population and acceptance of those with certain disabilities decreases because of abortion, it makes programs for those with disabilities more difficult to fund and support at the state and sometimes federal level. Christensen's argument misses the point, protecting the life of a child with Down syndrome in the womb sends a message that all life is valuable.
Janet Stafford is the Manager of Focus on the Family's Sanctity of Human Life initiatives, and also a mother to a child who has Down syndrome. She is a strong advocate for the life of her daughter and others who have the condition.
"As a mom of a daughter with Down syndrome, who happens to also be pro-life and pro-woman, I strongly feel that bills like these remind society of the inherent value of individuals with Down syndrome," she said. "I will take every opportunity I am provided to shout from the rooftops the potential and value of each and every human life, and even more so for those who are at risk for abortion, like my daughter."
In the United States, North Dakota and Indiana have also passed measures to protect preborn babies with Down syndrome from abortion. Although North Dakota's law remains in effect—Indiana's was challenged in court by abortion activists. The Attorney General of Indiana is currently asking the Supreme Court to review the case, which is one of the first direct challenges to portions of Roe v. Wade since Justice Brett Kavanaugh joined the court and a test of how far abortion restrictions can go.
"The more we can put laws in place to protect the lives of the largest minority in America, individuals with disabilities, "More and more opportunities will open up to support the growth and development of such a beautiful community." Stafford said.