The decreasing number of babies born with Down's Syndrome in spite of a growing number of mothers in the 'high-risk' age group, doesn't mean that research into Down's Syndrome has brought good results. Very simply, it means that given the choice to abort a down's syndrome baby or let it live, mothers are choosing death.
...About 400,000 Americans have Down syndrome, the most common genetic condition in the United States, which produces an array of challenges, including retardation, delayed language and slow motor development.Although screening facilities are careful to assert that screening is not compulsory (yet), the information given to parents about screening comes with an underlying attitude that 'some things are to be avoided'.
In the absence of prenatal testing, the United States would have experienced a 34 percent increase in the number of Down births between 1989 and 2005, Skotko estimates.
Instead, 15 percent fewer such babies were born during that time, representing a 49 percentage point difference between expected and observed rates, according to Skotko's research...
The IWK Pre-Natal Screening webpage is an example of this presumption:
Remember that screening and diagnostic tests cannot rule out all possible inherited conditions, health complications or developmental problems in a baby.
The desire to 'rule out' is the presumption - a presumption that eugenics is acceptable. Only in a limited number of cases does pre-natal screening reveal information that can be acted upon to positively affect the health of the child. The rest of the time, the information provides only a 'reason' to abort.
Many parents receive unbalanced information, missing the positive input from parents of children with conditions such as Down's Syndrome. In response to that, efforts have been made to bring in 'prenatal screening awareness acts'. Judging from statistics, more needs to be done is this area.
To help with awareness, disabled persons are beginning to speak out to bring awareness of their humanity, and their happiness to be, and remain, ALIVE!
Such is the state of our society - that human beings are not recognized as human! It seems more and more of us are being excluded from 'full membership' in the human family. The unborn, the disabled, the elderly,the terminally ill... how soon will the 'expensive to treat' be added to the list? (Wouldn't that include obese, smoker, family history of heart failure..?)