Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Letter to Tom Wynne of Indy's Child

Dear Mr. Wynne,

It is with great disappointment that I write to you regarding your article on Prenatal Testing, written by Amy Cahill in the current issue of “Indy’s Child.”

It is appalling that the parents of the children whose pictures appear on your front cover were led to believe that they were being featured as part of a “Summer Fun” story. How disgraceful that this article was published without their knowledge.

I cannot imagine anyone with any professional ethics or knowledge of journalism would have let Ms. Cahill’s story appear in this fashion. Did no one consider the other side of this equation? What about parents who do not chose to have prenatal testing? More importantly, what about allowing the families of these children who are on the cover of the magazine to share their experiences in your magazine?

Although the facts about how prenatal testing is done, and how the results are calculated are correct, Ms. Cahill has chosen to slant this story in a very negative fashion. Using her own prenatal testing experience, she describes how devastating it was to learn that there was even a small chance her child could have Down syndrome.

In the article she quotes the benefits of women having opportunities for earlier and earlier prenatal testing, “before anyone else even knows she is pregnant.”

The only reason this would be of any benefit is because the woman would then have the opportunity to abort that child before anyone knew about it. Indeed, approximately 85% of women who are prenatally diagnosed will go on to abort.

I cannot imagine the pain, and the knotted, twisted, sick feeling in the pit of their stomachs that the parents of the children on the cover of your magazine must be feeling to think that even one person who has picked up your magazine may think that they are encouraging and promoting this testing for purposes of abortion.

I wonder if Ms. Cahill would submit a picture of her “perfect” child that she was so very fortunate to have given birth to without Down syndrome for next month’s cover. And perhaps you could run an article on the inside of your magazine that tells everyone reading it how they can predict prenatally that their child may look or act like hers does – you know, so they can prepare for such a misfortune.

Of course, I know the answer to that question – she would never allow such a thing to happen.

Unfortunately, you took that choice away from the parents of these children by keeping them uninformed about the contents of your magazine.

Shame on you.


Betsy Lapierre
Alexandria, Ontario

1 comment:

Nicole said...