The novel was published in 2018, but I have only just found the time to read it now, as toddlers do tend to keep you busy! It is abhorrent, especially as the mother of a little girl with Down syndrome. Having a platform to reach the masses comes with responsibility. And not just an animal. All she wanted to do was cheer. On Monday, Calhoun High School student Grace Key, who has Down syndrome, got her wish. The suggestion that we should laugh wryly at Sister Dorothea’s suggestion is derogatory in nature and immediately reduces Sister Frances to a caricature. Girls have two X chromosomes and boys have an X and a Y. | Directed by John Holmquist and written by Steve Callaghan, the episode originally aired on Fox in the United States on February 14, 2010. 2021 Mighty Proud Media, Inc. All Rights Reserved. CBS sparked controversy when it reported Sunday that “close to 100 percent" of expecting mothers in Iceland who received a positive test for Down syndrome “terminated their pregnancy”. Arnopp has created the character of Sister Frances, who has Down syndrome. In a written statement, officials with the Calhoun City Schools announced she would be made an honorary cheerleader. The Black Lives Matter movement has highlighted to us all how dangerous and unacceptable it is to have racist depictions of characters in entertainment still being used today. Liz, apparently unaware of this, or the meme's wide circulation across the web, says she and a circle of friends have been going after Facebook pages that display the image — even going so far as to call the police — but have had little luck getting them removed. Slightly further along in the novel, we come to a sentence in which Arnopp describes Sister Frances as “a simpleton.” The definition of simpleton is “someone who is not very intelligent.” Down syndrome is classed as a learning disability/intellectual disability, meaning that it can take people with the condition longer to learn skills. Perpetuating this prejudiced view of people with Down syndrome is unacceptable, irresponsible and dangerous. "Down's Syndrome Girl" is a musical number sung by Stewie to Chris in order to prepare for his date with Ellen in "Extra Large Medium". Gerber/Facebook. Fox’s “Glee” is generating controversy after depicting a character with Down syndrome bringing a gun to school. Getting back to the point though, using the word “simpleton” to describe a character with Down syndrome is downright offensive. A similar controversy surrounded the "Extra Large Medium" episode of "Family Guy." People got mad that a female character with Down syndrome was bossy. I’m unsure where Arnopp has gathered her information about Down syndrome, but her work shows a clear and abhorrent prejudice against people with the condition. It most often occurs in pregnancy of women who are over thirty-five years of age. M yth #3: Down’s Syndrome kids remain kids forever. According to Liz, the photo was taken from the website of a local support group for parents of children with disabilities. ... the cheerleading coach invited a student with Down Syndrome to … The Atlantic has come under fire for a controversial article about the alarming rate of people choosing to abort unborn children with disabilities. At one point, the author states the following: “No house would take her; her difficulties make her strange, people may find her off-putting.” This idea that nobody would want a person with Down syndrome to live with them spins a whole new and worrying avenue of prejudice for the reader. (Credit: Denis Kuvaev via www.shutterstock.com.) She writes that Sister Frances was “treading on people’s toes and causing uproar.” This cheap attempt at humor is at the cost of people with Down syndrome. This is followed, later on in the novel by the statement “my mistaken conviction that simple folk can make a difference.” Influencing the reader to think that people with Down syndrome are not welcome in the world is truly biased writing. This issue of prejudice against people with learning disabilities being portrayed in historical fiction needs to be held with just as much weight. Six months ago, Liz Crowter discovered that her daughter had become the subject of a particularly nasty Internet meme — and, given the Internet, that's saying something. What I found in Judith Arnopp’s writing shocked me, and at one point, reduced me to tears. Lucas is the first spokesbaby to have Down syndrome. In 1896, 20 years after Langdon Down first described "mongoloids," Telford Smith reported that giving thyroid therapy improved physical and mental conditions of these children. © This is something that needs to change. But some are speaking out against the ridicule, reminding folks that just because you can be a jackass, "does not mean that you should be a jack-ass.". It appears you entered an invalid email. Kalista Hesch The overall impression created by Arnopp is that this woman is a nuisance to those around her and needs to be excluded by ignoring her. Common effects of Down syndrome include a smaller stature, a slight flattening of the rear of the skull, slightly upward slanting eyes, a degree of mental retardation, and heart and eyesight problems. If this novel had actually been written hundreds of years ago, I could perhaps understand why such antiquated perceptions of Down syndrome were being peddled as entertainment. It justifies to the reader that the author believes it is acceptable to laugh at people with Down syndrome. Obviously, it's wrong to depict people with Down syndrome as social monsters. Arnopp uses a variety of literary techniques to further persuade the reader of her perception of Down syndrome. She even goes so far as to have one of the other characters state that she was “grating on my nerves.” In another scene, this character, her caregiver states she is now ignoring Sister Frances. Authorities in Thailand are to inspect all the clinics in the country offering surrogacy services to see if they are operating within the law after a … Shortland Street's 'insensitive' Down syndrome baby storyline controversy . In terms of how Arnopp’s decision to create a derogatory caricature of a woman with Down syndrome sits with me in modern society, it raises a number of grave concerns. Your thoughts on Macdonald’s attempts to subdue his latest controversy on ... girl or the fraternity that got shut down because of ... he made regarding people born with Down syndrome. A new, simple way to detect Down syndrome in a fetus means the condition will be virtually extinct — but not without a great deal of controversy… ", Meanwhile, the Internet is doing what the Internet does: Turning the whole thing into a meme. Feb 23, 2020 News. Instead of describing her as walking, like the others, she describes Sister Frances as “stumbling.” This description speaks volumes about the way Arnopp perceives people with Down syndrome move. One particularly shocking line reads that Sister Frances is “lumbering behind them like a performing bear.” The use of the adjective “lumbering” creates a disrespectful image of how the character walks, but it is the use of the comparison of Sister Frances to a “performing bear” that is the most shocking. This says to me that more people in the literary world than just Arnopp feel that it is acceptable to create such prejudice against people with Down syndrome. As an author, Arnopp should know that her writing influences anyone who reads it and she should perhaps reflect on how she is influencing the readers of this novel to buy into her own biased view of Down syndrome. All she wanted to do was cheer. Girl with Down syndrome. She “joyfully joins her discordant notes with the others.” This perpetuation of guiding the reader to laugh at this character is tiresome to endure. Arnopp also uses infantilization to depict Sister Frances. She is slow in both thought and action; Sister Dorothea swears she must have been dropped on her head as an infant.” Do I even need to explain why this description of a character is unacceptable? "These trolls are cowardly, nasty people who should be punished for the damage they are doing to people with their comments," she says. "Extra Large Medium" is the 12th episode of the eighth season of the animated comedy series Family Guy. Perpetuating this prejudiced view of people with Down syndrome is unacceptable, irresponsible and dangerous. The simile Arnopp has chosen to use further impresses upon the reader that the character with Down syndrome is not equal to her counterparts. A husband apart of what is thought to be one of the United Kingdom’s first married couples with down syndrome has died from complications related to coronavirus. But in the UK, where a student was recently sent to jail for two months for making racist comments about Fabrice Muamba on Twitter, trolls might want to pick on someone else. All Grace Key wanted was to be a part of Calhoun (Ga.) High’s cheerleading squad. Born with Down syndrome, Key already participated on the school’s swim team, and … Using the technique of dehumanization, Arnopp reduces Sister Frances’ status to that of an animal. In the US and most other places, likely nothing. This week, the pureed food purveyors appointed its first-ever “spokesbaby” with Down syndrome. Palins Cry Foul on 'Family Guy' Down Syndrome Episode, Others See 'Sense of Humor' Down syndrome assoc., actress providing character voice not siding with Palin. It seems Gerber has stirred up some controversy. That she is an animal to be laughed at. There is controversy about the influence of the father's age. Further, the photo itself appears to have been lifted not from the website of a support group, but rather from a book published by Liz and Steve Crowter called Surprise Package: When God Turns Your Life Upside Down's. She was given a platform to spin these prejudiced pictures of a woman with a learning disability. They argued her dominant, demanding personality hurt public perception of Down syndrome. Oops! Or that there is something vastly wrong with a person with a learning disability. And it is right that these examples are being banned and removed from our culture. Yet, the novel was published in 2018. The constant references to Sister Frances being different from the other characters are sickening to read. Terms. A baby photo of Heidi, a now-16-year-old girl with Down's Syndrome, was used to create a highly controversial macro meme known as "I Can Count to Potato." For some, this is a move toward greater inclusion; for others, it seems like just a tokenizing PR move. And if you don’t hit your deadline, you’re in trouble! This is further compounded by the scenes in which Sister Frances is beaten and abused as a result of her being “an idiot.” Hate crime against people with learning disabilities is at its highest-ever level in the U.K. Normalizing a character being physically assaulted as a result of having a learning disability is irresponsible in light of the current levels of hate crime in our society. ... People with Down's syndrome are all very different from each other, in looks and personality and ability. Arnopp describes the character as having “strange, almond-shaped eyes” which highlights exactly how Arnopp perceives people with Down syndrome. Down syndrome, or trisomy 21, occurs when there is an extra copy of chromosome 21. I want to believe that Ariel and Deborah Levy love the heck out of their little girl with Down syndrome. As the mother of a little girl with Down syndrome, I have an interest in how people with my daughter’s condition are portrayed in literature. Arnopp furthers her impression of Sister Frances as a hindrance to others by describing the way she moves in a clumsy manner. Mom chooses life for baby girl with Down syndrome after overcoming fear of the unknown December 21, 2020 Constitutional Nobody Survival Linzi Graham was 18 weeks pregnant with her third child when she learned her preborn baby had Down syndrome. A new prenatal test for Down's syndrome hit the market in Germany and several other European countries Monday, the manufacturer said, amid a controversy over whether it could lead to more abortions. Girl with Down Syndrome Becomes TikTok Sensation for Doing Her Big Sister’s Hair. Arnopp encourages her readers to mock and laugh at Sister Frances by repeatedly describing her as not being able to sing very well. The show, which has a history of crossing the line at every opportunity, took a shot at Palin last night, mocking her son with Down syndrome. A performing bear is a captive animal, usually held in chains in order to dance in a comical manner for the entertainment of others. She portrays her as childlike, as needing to be cared for, and alongside that she weaves into her writing the idea that Sister Frances is irritating. The study included 49 boys and 56 girls (6-18 years old) born at least 35 weeks gestation with Down syndrome. Girl with Down syndrome will serve as honorary cheerleader following controversy. Privacy Though the 45-year-old from Coventry told The Sun she first spotted the meme late last year on Facebook, the macro has been in use since at least 2009, according to Know Your Meme. Meet the newest colors of Reece’s Rainbow… Home with their forever families! Every pregnant woman in Iceland is given an option of a prenatal test that can detect Down syndrome with 85 percent accuracy. Michael Cox and Taylor Anderton from Queensland want to get married and have children but their concerned parents fear they will never be ready because of their Down Syndrome. Thyroid, DS and Controversy Before the genetic reason of Down Syndrome was known, many people thought that DS was caused by hypothyroidism. It is an antiquated and derogatory stereotype of people with Down syndrome, suggesting that people with the condition are somehow damaged. A 24-year-old woman who has Down’s syndrome has launched a landmark case against the UK Government over the current discriminatory abortion law that singles out babies with disabilities allowing abortion right through to birth for conditions including Down’s syndrome, cleft lip and club foot. Let us not perpetuate the myth of prejudice. A baby photo of Heidi, a now-16-year-old girl with Down's Syndrome, was used to create a highly controversial macro meme known as "I Can Count to Potato." The New Zealand Down Syndrome Association said it has fielded ... * Girl with Down syndrome … They don’t. The latest twist in the important controversy of Family Guy making fun of Trig Palin: An actress with Down syndrome said Sarah Palin "does not have a sense of humor." You've got to look your best tonight, You tubby little parasite, 'Cause there's a lovely lady and she's waiting for you. Joelle Kelly's four-year-old daughter Josee was born with Down syndrome Here, she shares her thoughts and common misconceptions about the condition By Laura House For Daily Mail Australia When you use that power you have to create further bias, prejudice and discrimination against a minority community, there has to be some form of accountability. We are introduced to her in the most diabolical manner. In "Extra Large Medium", the show's main character, Peter, discovers that he has supposedly developed … And there is nothing wrong with that. The children were part of the Down Syndrome … Suggesting that people should laugh at the way others who have hypotonia move is inciting behavior that belittles and bullies. Lucas Warren, an 18-month-old from Dalton, Georgia, won the company’s Gerber baby contest yesterday — a […] I chose to read “Sisters of Arden” by Judith Arnopp, as I heard it contained a character with Down syndrome. As an author, Arnopp should know that her writing influences anyone who reads it and she should perhaps reflect on how she is influencing the readers of this novel to buy into her own biased view of Down syndrome. ", Heidi herself has been recently informed of her unwitting celebrity, and is reportedly "very upset. In an episode which aired Thursday night, gunshots are heard during glee club practice, prompting a lockdown at the high school. It remains to be seen what, if anything, will come of humanizing the meme. They grow into adults like you and me, with all the same emotions, worries and joys. Many applauded the company’s decision to choose Lucas, but some slammed the choice as a marketing move, according to People. And 4chan is busy trying to pin the whole thing on 9gag (the meme actually originated on FunnyJunk). "They have no right to take Heidi's image and use it alongside these cruel sites. Glenda, 20, who has Down syndrome, is part of a program at Watchung Hills Regional High School in Warren, New Jersey, that allows special needs students to continue their education until they are 21. On Monday, Calhoun High School student Grace Key, who has Down syndrome, got her wish. “The Last Children of Down Syndrome” by Sarah Zhang discussed universal prenatal testing offered to all pregnant women in Demark that can detect if their unborn children have Down syndrome. Arnopp builds on the prejudiced image of her character by using the word “simple” repeatedly to describe Sister Frances throughout the novel. Who made these rules that there is a timescale and a deadline in which we should be able to butter our toast or boil an egg? Arnopp writes, “Sister Frances isn’t given to words. Some Twitter users pointed to the fact that Gerber Life allegedly denied insurance polcies to children with Down syndrome due to “life expectancy.” After making headlines for calling out Rahm Emanuel for his use of the word "retard," Sarah Palin may have a new target: "Family Guy." The author has been allowed to use extremely derogatory words to describe a person with Down syndrome by her publisher. Down syndrome is the most common chromosomal ... friends,” said Holly Christensen, a parenting columnist for the Akron Beacon Journal and the mother of a 5-year-old girl with Down syndrome. Chosen to use further impresses upon the reader that the character as having “ strange, eyes... In trouble to sing very well week, the pureed food purveyors appointed first-ever! Being different from the website of a prenatal test that can detect Down syndrome, Meanwhile, Internet. Seems like just a tokenizing PR move public perception of Down syndrome the Calhoun City announced... 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