Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Passage of Down Syndrome Bill Inspired by Trig Palin and Heroic Catholic Dad

In the October 12-18 issue of National Catholic Register, Leticia Velasquez of the blog causa nostrae laetitiae has written an excellent piece on the passage of Sen. Brownback's Down Syndrome legislation:
... Enter two farmers, one from Kansas, and another from Virginia. Their confluence of compassion, combined with the star power of one special baby, has resulted in a minor miracle: a unanimous vote in the Senate with the approval of the Prenatally and Postnatally Diagnosed Conditions Awareness Act (S. 1810) on Sept. 23.

Suddenly, fate took a stunning turn when Sarah Palin rocketed into the national spotlight this month, her son Trig in her arms. He was a tranquil baby who now put a face on Down syndrome. America was completely smitten by the image of big sister Piper, who, while cradling Trig during her mother’s convention speech, licked her hand and smoothed down her little brother’s hair. Trig was the focus of affection in America, and again, parents of children with Down syndrome felt our hopes rise: Our bill might be approved.

Sen. Brownback, feeling the energy, took to the floor of the Senate in a bold move to extract his bill from an omnibus one weighted with pork, by requesting a unanimous vote. He had a silent ally: Thomas Vander Woude, a Virginia farmer, devout Catholic, and 66-year-old father of seven. Just a few days before, Tom saw his beloved 20-year-old son Joseph fall into a sewer, where he struggled to breathe, immersed in filth. Without hesitating, Tom dove into the sewer, holding his son’s head up so he could be rescued, sacrificing his life for a young man whom 90% of expectant parents reject; Josie has Down syndrome. Sen. Brownback told Tom’s extraordinary story in his speech.

Thomas Vander Woude’s mighty expression of fatherly love, combined with Sarah Palin’s gentle example of motherly love — refusing to abort a child whose birth complicated her career as governor of Alaska — brought this once forsaken little bill to victory in the Senate.

[Read the whole thing]
Very well done, Leticia!

Previous Pro Ecclesia posts on this subject:
Cardinal O'Malley: Trig Palin the "Star" of This Year's Political Conventions

Senate Passes Brownback's Down Syndrome Bill

Michael Gerson: "Trig's Breakthrough" [UPDATED]

Sen. Kennedy Joins Sen. Brownback on Pro-Life Legislation

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At 10/08/2008 7:03 PM, Blogger Leticia said...

That's high praise from a writer of your caliber, Jay, thanks!


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