PARIS — A television council in France has rejected an advertisement that features smiling Down syndrome children out of concerns that the video might “disturb” mothers who have aborted a baby because of his or her diagnosis.
The video “Dear Future Mom” has been in circulation for two years, created by the group CoorDown and released on World Down Syndrome Day in 2014. Its purpose was to encourage mothers whose unborn babies are diagnosed with Down syndrome after the group received an email from a pregnant woman who expressed that she was fearful of what the future held for her child.
“Dear future mom, don’t be afraid,” the video begins, featuring children of various ages. “Your child will be able to do many things. He’ll be able to hug you. He’ll be able to run toward you. He’ll be able to speak and tell you he loves you.”
“He’ll be able to go to school like everybody,” it continues. “He’ll be able to work and earn his money. And with that money, he’ll be able to invite you out for dinner. Or rent an apartment and go living alone.”
The video advises that the journey will indeed be difficult at times, but as the children smile and hug their mothers for the camera, they proclaim that both mother and child will lead happy lives.
However, this month, France’s Conseil d’État upheld a previous ban issued by the Conseil Supérieur de l’Audiovisuel, preventing the advertisement from being broadcast on French television.
“[The Council Supérieur’s] intention was not to hinder the distribution of this film, which he noted the positive contribution to the fight against the stigmatization of people with disabilities, but only to point out that his insertion within advertising screens was ‘inappropriate,'” the council said.
“The regulation provides that we may distribute, during commercial breaks, as advertising or, as an exception, ‘messages of general interest,'” it continued. “[T]he CSA felt that this film was not a ‘public service announcement” in the sense that the regulation gives this term. Since it is as addressed to a pregnant woman, it is, according to the CSA, ‘likely to disturb’ of women who have a medical abortion.”
But the news of the rejection has been disappointing to pro-life advocates. Kurt Kondrich of Human Coalition Pittsburgh, whose 13-year-old daughter Chloe has Down syndrome, told Christian News Network that children with the chromosomal condition are some of the most loving and joyful on earth.
“This news from France shows that the abortion industry and those who support these agents of death are not interested in truth and facts concerning our most precious and priceless gift—human life,” he said. “Individuals with Down syndrome bring unconditional love, genuine purity, and contagious joy into a broken world that desperately needs them, and the devil uses the darkness of abortion to prevent these awesome, beautiful human beings from shining bright light into a culture of death, depravity and deception.”
“Abortion has slaughtered millions of innocent, defenseless human beings, and prenatal testing combined with a misguided cultural mandate for unattainable perfection has caused a silent genocide against individuals with Down syndrome that must be stopped now,” he said. “We all should be asking who will be identified, targeted and eliminated next in the womb for not passing society’s guidelines for a happy, fulfilling life.”
As previously reported, Kondrich’s daughter Chloe was the inspiration behind a Pennsylvania bill, signed into law in 2014, that aims to help save the lives of Down syndrome babies who would otherwise be aborted.
It is estimated that 80 percent of women in France whose children are diagnosed with Down syndrome obtain an abortion.