“If ever there is tomorrow when we're not together.. there is something you must always remember. You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. But the most important thing is, even if we're apart.. I'll always be with you.”
~A.A. Milne, from "Winnie the Pooh"

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Truth about Down's Syndrome

Due to recent circumstances and a certain politician, I have done a little bit of extra research on the history of Down's Syndrome. I also have looked a tad bit into some of the claims (although I already knew them to be false) that this "man" has been spouting about the so-called related incidences of DS, Autism, and petroleum pollution. I thought it important to set the record straight in some small way without drawing any further attention to the person who started this storm of poop. (Not at all what I want to call it, but I AM trying to be nice here after all).
Down's Syndrome is caused by a replication of the 21st chromosome during cell meiosis. There is no solid medical evidence of what causes this in most cases. It's just something that happens. Incidence of this is estimated today as approximately 1 in every 733 live births. These numbers increase along with increased maternal age.
There are a wide range of possible physical similarities among people with DS. However, each child is different and not all of them share every characteristic.
Kids who are born with DS also face the possibility of several other health problems, which include congenital heart defects, respiratory and digestive issues, and increased instances of leukemia. Again, this is not to say that every child with Down's Syndrome has any or all of these additional issues.
Mental capacity is also dependant on the child itself. Despite misconceptions, not all, or in my experience, not even the majority, of our kids could be considered unintelligent, or as having limited or diminished mental capacities. Our kids do not remain children forever, nor do they remain children mentally for ever. They grow up. They get jobs. Some go to college, get married, have children. They are productive citizens and their only limitations are those that we, as a society, place on them.
There is absolutely NO evidence that every child with DS has autism. Do some? Yes. But that number is few.
The person whose name shall not be mentioned here has stated that Down's Syndrome is caused by a build up of toxins put into our environment by big bad petroleum companies. We, as parents, already knew this to be blatantly false. But I thought it had to be pointed out (with evidence, of course) that DS existed long before there were many uses for petroleum at all.
In 1866, John Langdon Down, who was the superintendent of an asylum for disabled children in England, published a paper on a set of children who shared similar characteristics. This is not to say that kids with DS did not exist before that time (obviously they did!). Simply that he was the first to recognise and put a name to the condition that they had.
The first actual gasoline automobile wasn't even invented until 1885, which was almost 20 years later. Even then, the gas powered car wasn't something that every household had until the 1950's and 60's. In 1930, there was approximately 1 car to every 4 households.
I think this pretty much disproves any theory that petroleum products caused our children to have DS. As I said, DS was around long before there were large petroleum companies to cause wide spread pollution. Is pollution a bad thing? Yes. Does it cause other health issues? Yes. But definitely not this particular one.
I hope sincerely that this man goes down. I know that as angry as I am, I will still pray for him tonight and will hope with all of my heart that he takes the time to be educated. He probably won't, but a mama can still hope...........


  1. He needs to get a clue. His hope for a clue is about as poor as his hope for being elected.

  2. wowsa!! this was great!! you should send this to his office and let him know the FACTS!! smiles

  3. Beautifully written! You kept your calm which I wouldn't have been able to do! The "man" will go down and hopefully, over time, he will learn and others will learn. One person at a time to make a difference. .


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