Kurt Kondrich
"Wrongful birth" lawsuit
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By Kurt Kondrich
July 24, 2010

Most people have read or heard about "wrongful death lawsuits" and the tragedy that preceded such legal action. In these cases, punitive damages are sought when a priceless human being is taken in a negligent manner from this earth.

This week, I read an article (http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/national/two-couples-suing-doctors-for-failing-to-diagnose-down-syndrome/story-e6frf7l6-1225894802548) concerning two couples suing doctors for failing to diagnose Down syndrome prenatally, and they have filed what amounts to a "wrongful birth lawsuit." The couples are claiming unspecified damages for economic loss, continuing costs of care of the children, and "psychiatric injury." Both say they would have aborted their pregnancies had they been told their children would be born with Down syndrome.

With a society that becomes more and more obsessed with "perfection," coupled with the rapid advances in prenatal testing, the extinction of children with Down syndrome and eventually all disabilities has become a very real possibility. When my beautiful daughter Chloe was born in 2003 with a diagnosis of Down syndrome, we had no prenatal testing, and our family and community have welcomed Chloe as a priceless member and precious gift. Chloe has planted more positive seeds in 7 years than most people do in a lifetime, and I frequently tell people that they should "wish" they had a daughter like my Chloe.

This "wrongful birth lawsuit" is a very slippery slope, and it could lead to law firms specializing in this type of prenatal litigation. When a unique and beautiful class of people have been marked as "undesirable" and "not welcome" then all of us need to ask the question "Who is next?" The true tragedy in this story is that these families did not realize how very blessed they were to receive a child with Down syndrome, and these children are exactly what this lost world needs. I hope someone soon files an "unlawful prenatal termination" lawsuit to put an end to this silent eugenic movement against God's most perfect gifts.

© Kurt Kondrich

 

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