Readers Speak Out: March 14, 2021

  • March 12, 2021

Love story

Re: Is technology threatening our humanity? (Jan. 17):

My youngest son was born in 2015. On the third day of his life, the geneticist told me that my son was born with Trisomy 21, otherwise known as Down syndrome.

I asked him what that meant. What would it mean to me? 

The general message seemed to be that my son would need help with some things but because there is so much individual variation, it was difficult to predict outcomes. Don’t we all need help with some things? 

Since then I have come across many words that have been, or are currently used, to describe people like my son. I cringe at most, if not all, of these words, as they were never meant to be complementary or even neutral by design. I prefer using my son’s name. After all, for whom and for what is any other label important? 

Many people, professional and not, have said many things to me. If you spoke to me about him, I have remembered your words. From the mother who shared with me the story of her own child now deceased, to the doctor that predicted my son will die of Alzheimer’s mid-life, to the woman who wrote about her struggle to accept that her son would never be a handsome successful man, to the family member who told me I got what I deserved. 

When my son was born one doctor told me it’s amazing what love can do. I was surprised that a doctor would say that. 

My son just turned six. His name is Nick. He is loved beyond measure. He is funny, smart and kind. He is handsome.

He will always kiss a boo-boo better or wipe your face if it’s dirty. He sings lullabies to his brothers before bedtime. He is healthy and strong. He loves to dance, play mini sticks, help around the house and watch sports highlights. Nick can read, write and count. He loves school and knows the name of everyone in his class. Nick is assertive and loves to talk. He is learning how to skate, ride a bike, add and subtract, do push-ups and say some words in Polish. Rozumiesz

Nick wants to do all the things that we do. There are some things that he cannot do, just like everybody, and we help him with those things. Sometimes he just needs some extra time. Sometimes he just needs practice. Sometimes he just needs you to be patient so that he can teach you something.

I hope you are lucky enough to get a chance to meet him one day. I dare you not to fall in love. 

Maria Baranowski,

Winnipeg, Man.


Better way

Re: “Asylum-seekers along Mexican border putting their hope in Joe Biden” (Jan. 25):

Canada and America must devise an alternative to the Safe Third Country Agreement that safeguards the lives, health and safety of asylum seekers, particularly along the Mexico-United States border. The demeaning Migrant Protection Protocols of the Trump regime led to the imprisonment of children and families seeking to escape crime and tyranny throughout Latin America.

For wanting better, migrants report they are attacked, robbed, harassed and even killed by cartels and brigands while officials ignore their plight.

A better agreement could offer them the chance to select an alternative destination country if their temporary host refuses them entry. In this way, the U.S. could ease the burden on Mexico as a way station country and shuttle refugees to Canada.

Christopher Mansour,

Barrie, Ont.

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