‘The Middle’ Star Patricia Heaton Takes to Twitter to Defend Those With Down Syndrome

Patricia-Heaton-The-MiddlePatricia Heaton is a rare creature in Hollywood — a bankable star who’s also a fierce defender of life, including for those with Down syndrome, as she demonstrated yesterday on Twitter.


The tweet immediately got thousands of likes and retweets; and Heaton went on to tweet out several responses she got from people about how they’ve been touched by the Down syndrome people in their lives. As reported by LifeSiteNews, many other people joined in the Twitter response.

Coincidentally, over at the Faith & Family Media Blog just yesterday, I posted an email interview with Rachel Osterbach, one of the young adults with Down syndrome. Read the whole thing here, but I did ask her about what she would say to parents afraid to bring a Down syndrome child into the world:

Many parents are very afraid of having a child with Down syndrome. What would you like to say to them?

Don’t be afraid because your son or daughter can achieve anything and can find great happiness in life. You will laugh with them, you will cry with them, you will enjoy their successes with them and be there for them when they are struggling, just like you would with any child.

Heaton is a revert to the Catholic Church, as I discussed in this post for the Faith & Family Media Blog. It also looks at a tweet she sent out referring to an experience at Mass:


At the recent TV Critics Association Press Tour, held in Beverly Hills, Heaton appeared as part of a panel on the upcoming ninth and final season of her hit ABC sitcom, “The Middle,” which begins Oct. 3. It was a week after her first homily tweet, so here’s what transpired:

QUESTION:  Question for Patricia Heaton.  First of all, I hope the homily this week was better than last week.  That’s an inside joke.

PATRICIA HEATON:  Yes. (She also laughed.)

I also wanted to know what Heaton — who starred on the long-running “Everybody Loves Raymond” on CBS before “The Middle” — thought about what it took to have a great family sitcom (that’s actually suitable for the whole family to watch):

QUESTION:  Secondly, as a veteran of two of the most successful family comedies on network television, if you were to be taken out to lunch by somebody who wants to create the next great family comedy, what would be, from your experience, the advice you’d give them?

PATRICIA HEATON:  You hire Eileen and DeAnn (“The Middle” creators Eileen Heisler and DeAnne Heline) or (“Raymond” creator) Phil Rosenthal … You know, I think the great shows are great because it comes from real experience.  And I can tell you that some of the most outrageous episodes actually happened to the writers.  And that’s true on “The Middle” and on “Raymond.”  And I know that we all come in ‑‑ I come in and talk about what I’m dealing with with my kids.  And it just so happens that my kids have all been the same ages of the kids on the shows at that same time.  So we’ve been going through all these things together, all of us.  And that’s what gives it authenticity.  And then you just have super-talented people.  But I think authenticity would be the key.

Heaton proves that you can be a strong voice for life and still a success in Hollywood. It hasn’t been easy for her, and she takes a lot of heat, but she continues to speak out.

All I can say is, “Amen!”

Image: Courtesy ABC

Don’t miss a thing: head over to my other home, as Social Media Manager at Family Theater Productions; and check out FTP’s Faith & Family Media Blog.

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