Sunday, May 17, 2009

So much for religious and medical freedoms

A rural judge in Minnesota has ruled that a 13-year-old boy diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma may be forcibly treated with chemotherapy, despite he and his parents wishing to use only alternative therapies, citing their sincerely held religious beliefs.

Our view? That family is crazy not to utilize the standard treatment protocol, which is very effective with only a minimal chance of severe side effects or mortality. That's not our call, however, and neither is it the call of the judge in this case, who is squashing this family's rights both to follow their own religion's dogma as well as to choose the type of health care they wish their child to receive. This isn't some 6-month-old baby we're talking about here. It's an almost high-school-age boy who has stated himself that he will physically resist the chemotherapy that's being crammed into him, should it come to that.

While listening to this topic being discussed on talk radio, the host made one point that really resonated with us:

If the kid and his parents insist on using alternative healing methods and the boy dies, the mother and father will probably be charged with child abuse and neglect.

But, if the judge and/or CPS orders the kid to be treated with chemotherapy, and the child dies as a direct result (a small but very real chance), shouldn't they be just as liable for that bad outcome as well?

"[Brown County Judge John] Rodenberg said the state's interest in protecting the child override the constitutional right to freedom of religious expression and a parent's right to direct a child's upbringing."

Parents seemingly no longer have any rights, according to this judge, if they somehow conflict with his interpretation of the legality of the Nanny State's ever-more intrusive ways of "protecting" children. How long until a buffoon such as this rules that the Second Amendment has no place in a home that contains children, for the very same reason?

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