This Week: Three Parents’ Perspectives on Curing Down Syndrome

This Week: Three Parents’ Perspectives on Curing Down Syndrome October 8, 2013

As a part of my ongoing series about whether or not “curing” Down syndrome is a desirable goal, I’ve asked three parents of children with Down syndrome to offer their perspectives. Last week, we heard from Rachel Adams (The Damaging Language of “Cure” and Down Syndrome) about the social and linguistic problems with this idea. We also heard from Fayal Guedj, one of the doctors who has been researching this topic (Down syndrome: Toward a new research era and effective therapies). Though both Adams and Guedj have family members with Down syndrome, they wrote based upon their professional expertise.

We turn this week to three parents and bloggers who write from their personal expertise as mothers and father to children with Down syndrome. Their perspectives are necessarily limited and yet they provide three different windows into this house full of questions about the nature and purpose of human lives, the role of medicine and genetic intervention, and the possibilities for a good life for us all. Although all of them express some ambivalence, they ultimately reach different conclusions.

Later today, I will introduce Lisa Morguess, mother of seven including Finn, who has Down syndrome. Tomorrow we will hear from Leticia Velasquez, whose daughter Christina has Down syndrome. And finally, on Thursday, Mark Leach will offer some reflections on his thoughts as the father of Juliet, who, you guessed it, has Down syndrome.

(Stay tuned–in the weeks to come we will hear from a cultural critic, a philosopher, ethicist, theologian, and two young women with Down syndrome…)

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