The only US cartoon to feature a character with Down syndrome was Family Guy, which was a disaster, as it led to a disgusting song about the sexuality of girls with Down sydnrome. People with Ds are a novelty in this nation, and an object of ridicule, not simply members of the community as they are in Ireland.
Gerard O’Rourke from Monster animation says that the main character Punky is a playful six year old girl who lives with her family but she is slightly different to other children. O'Rourke told the Evening heard that judging from their research this is the first ever series where the main character has Down Syndrome.
"It was unique and scary to deal with the subject matter on a mainstream cartoon. Down Syndrome Ireland provided a great bedrock and they were completely behind the idea of us doing the show," he said.
He added: "We wanted it to be shown among mainstream cartoons. It's not like a special show being shown at a special time. It'll be shown in amongst Dora the Explorer and Peppa Pig."
Good for Mr O'Rourke! You can't accept a type of person you rarely see, so frequency of contact leads to acceptance. I have never faced rejection of Christina by children, merely curiousity.
Maybe American TV will carry the show and teach young people in the US what a child with Down syndrome is like, they would certainly have to search far and wide to find one here.