Last week, actor and Down syndrome advocate Frank Stephens powerfully testified before the House Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Committee on Appropriations about the value of life — specifically the value of the lives of those born with Down syndrome.
“I am a man with Down syndrome, and my life is worth living,” he emphatically stated during a committee hearing on Wednesday.
Troubling new statistics show that 100 percent of unborn children believed to have Down syndrome are aborted in Iceland, and similarly high termination rates exist in countries like South Korea and Denmark. Stephens called the trend “deeply prejudiced” and part of “an outdated idea of life with Down syndrome.”
“It is hard for me to sit here and say those words,” he said of the abortion trend. “I completely understand that the people pushing this particular ‘final solution’ are saying that people like me should not exist.”
Stephens, who is a Quincy Jones Advocate at the Global Down Syndrome Foundation, went on to explain that he has lived a full and productive life, citing his acting roles, speaking gigs at major universities, contributor credit in a best-selling book, and two trips to the White House as just a few examples.
“Seriously, I have a great life,” he said. “I don’t feel I should have to justify my existence.”
Watch Stephen’s full remarks below:
With more and more countries seemingly turning toward a family planning method that picks and chooses “which humans get a chance at life,” Stephens pleaded with the congressional committee to increase funding for research into Down syndrome so that America can emerge as a beacon on the hill when it comes to defending and advocating for the sanctity of life.
“We are giving the world a chance to think about the ethics of choosing which humans get a chance at life,” he said. “Is there really no place for us in the world?”
“Help us make this difference,” he concluded. “Let’s be America, not Iceland or Denmark. Let’s pursue answers, not ‘final solutions.’ Let’s be America. Let’s make our goal to be Alzheimer’s free, not Down syndrome free.”
(H/T: The Daily Wire)