Editor’s note. Kurt and Chloe Kondrich, a teenager with Down syndrome, tell “an incredible story of life, death, disability, and the power of an innocent child to bring people unity, hope and peace,” to quote Maria Gallagher. This wonderful Father/Daughter team will be featured at NRLC 2019’s closing banquet, Saturday night, July 6.
NRL News Today asked Kurt to bring us up to speed on Chloe, Chloe’s Foundation, and what there is about this just-turned 16-year-old teenager that has won hearts all over the nation—and at the United Nations.
NRL News Today. What is the mission of Chloe’s Foundation?
Kurt: Chloe’s Foundation is focused on providing resources, support, and assistance to children with Down syndrome and their families. Chloe’s Foundation will concentrate on helping children with Down syndrome and their families to have a healthy, happy, productive LIFE where the focus is on the ABILITIES of the individual with Down syndrome in social, educational, and community settings.
NRL News Today: How will you measure its impact?
Kurt: When we see a decline in the abortion rates for children diagnosed prenatally with Down syndrome and ultimately the end of this prenatal eugenic movement, then we will know our message to “Embrace don’t erase” has had the impact globally that God is using it for. I know and believe with all my heart and soul that this is the mission with Chloe’s Foundation that God created our family for, and He is using us as His instruments for this historic LIFE movement.
NRL News Today: What is your message about special needs children and abortion?
Kurt: Children diagnosed prenatally with Down syndrome are aborted, up to 90% in the US, 90%+ in Europe. and 100% in Iceland. Chloe’s Foundation will work to restore a culture of LIFE for individuals with Down syndrome where people “Embrace don’t erase” Down syndrome, and we will advocate for policies that will end this eugenic movement. Prenatal testing combined with the instrument of abortion where a child is identified, targeted, and terminated because he or she does not meet the misguided cultural mandate for unattainable perfection is the ultimate form of genocide, prejudice, bias, profiling, exclusion, intolerance, bigotry, and hate in a culture that tries to promote inclusion, acceptance, tolerance, acceptance and love. As genetic testing becomes ever more sophisticated, what if we discover a prenatal test for Autism, ADHD, Depression, Heart disease, shortness, baldness, red hair, brown eyes, problem acne–the list goes on and on. People need to pause and reflect. They should be asking who is next to be identified, targeted, and terminated, victims of a prenatal death sentence. Who were the very first people the Nazis came for? The disabled. If a person can be eliminated prenatally because they are seen as a “burden” or less than “perfect,” then what will stop this from happening postnatally if a person becomes severely injured, disfigured, disabled, or ill?
Chloe’s Foundation will also help families who wish to adopt a child with Down syndrome and we will be genuine pro-life not just pro-birth. It is an idea and concept I have had for many years after I became aware of the prenatal genocide against children like my daughter Chloe and the silence and lack of engagement on this issue. My favorite Bible Verse which I have tattooed on my arm is Proverbs 31:8 “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves”
NRL News Today: Is that warning heard any more today than it was, say, five years ago?
Kurt: Yes! I believe this issue of prenatal Down syndrome genocide is being heard more today than ever thanks to the loud voices of family members, friends, advocates, and policymakers who realize the implications of this genocide. The recent report from Iceland that they have “Cured Down syndrome” by eliminating 100% of children diagnosed prenatally with Down syndrome has awakened people across the globe who will no longer remain silent on this issue. Along with other incredible advocates and professionals Chloe and I have spoken twice at the United Nations over the past two years about this Down syndrome genocide, a sign that gradually we are coming to understand the global impact of this lethal discrimination. I do believe this issue will collapse the culture of death and restore a culture of LIFE where we all defend and protect our most vulnerable citizens and our most priceless National Treasure – Human Life.
NRL News Today: You mentioned “Embrace don’t erase.” What does that mean?
Kurt: Individuals with Down syndrome fill the world with unconditional love, genuine kindness, pure joy and the kind of bright light this lost culture desperately needs. As human beings we should “Embrace” these amazing people and not seek to “erase” them through a silent eugenic movement. During my 20-year law enforcement career I never encountered or read about a person with Down syndrome committing an act of malice, evil, or hate.
NRL News Today: It seems as if Chloe and you are on the move non-stop, spreading the message of “Embrace don’t erase”
Kurt: Chloe is 16 years old and she has planted more positive seeds and filled the world with more goodness and light than most people do in a very long lifetime. Consider this list, which is only partial. She has been to the United Nations twice; appears in a global Down syndrome video of hope that has touched lives across the world in several different languages; has met with the President and the Vice President of the United States at the White House; has met many policymakers and advocated for supports and services; and has appeared on the floor of the US House of Representatives. Chloe has also received awards for her LIFE Advocacy in New York City, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, has met twice with Cardinal Timothy Dolan and appeared on his TV Show, has been written about in many articles and magazines and featured on and in a book “Brilliant Souls” about the ABILTIES of individuals with Down syndrome. I often tell people that Chloe will have an incredible mansion in Heaven.
NRL News Today: Of all the things that Chloe has accomplished, what are you and your wife proudest of?
Kurt: She is our beautiful, amazing daughter and we are proud of everything she does on a daily basis, and all the love, joy and goodness she has brought our family and community. I would say the advocacy Chloe did at our Pennsylvania Capitol to get the Down syndrome Prenatal Education Act (“Chloe’s Law”) passed by an overwhelming majority of bipartisan policymakers was an absolute amazing miracle feat.
When Chloe signed the law at the desk of then Governor Corbett, it was one of the proudest moments of our family’s life. Also Chloe and our family were invited to the White House to stand by President Trump and Vice President Pence during the 2018 March for Life. The President kissed Chloe on the head and said loudly, “She’s Beautiful.” That is a priceless memory, an unbelievably proud moment our family will always cherish.