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bcsapper

Parenting as seen fit by the government.

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Ok, so we know these people are out there - in more ways than one. I don't want to just label them "clueless hippies", because the word clueless is implied.

Anyway, what bothers me is the people around them who either supported their decisions or simply just did nothing. These "parents" obviously knew the risks and gambled (and lost) their toddler's life on their backward belief system, but what about the nurse friend, shouldn't she have made it clear that the parents see an actual doctor immediately? How about the naturopath, they obviously told her what they suspected and she gave them echinacea? Really? shouldn't this person be held accountable to some extent for her negligence?

Edited by Hal 9000

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Ok, so we know these people are out there - in more ways than one. I don't want to just label them "clueless hippies", because the word clueless is implied.

Anyway, what bothers me is the people around them who either supported their decisions or simply just did nothing. These "parents" obviously knew the risks and gambled (and lost) their toddler's life on their backward belief system, but what about the nurse friend, shouldn't she have made it clear that the parents see an actual doctor immediately? How about the naturopath, they obviously told her what they suspected and she gave them echinacea? Really? shouldn't this person be held accountable to some extent for her negligence?

On CBC today, news that the Naturopath was going to be investigated by the College of Naturopaths.

There's a college???

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Yes, there is a college and they had to go just as along as a main stream doctor. The problem here was the parents were told the child should see a main stream doctor because he was showing something more serious but they didn't believe it. The father and his dad own a natural business. The child also, hadn't had any childhood shots for other diseases and that is a growing problem in Canada.

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The anti-vax, anti-medicine or god will save my baby crowds are certainly a problem. Denying a child basic, life saving medical treatment should not be tolerated. However, we are also experiencing problems from helicopter parents at the other end of the spectrum. For example families are being investigated for allowing kids to play at the park or unsupervised in their own backyard. http://www.treehugger.com/culture/winnipeg-mom-investigated-letting-kids-play-alone-backyard.html

Obvious cases of negligence like this story in the OP lead us to the more interesting and divided discussion of where to draw the line. Or maybe we don't need a line, maybe we can allow medical professionals to determine what treatments are mandatory on a case by case basis. That wouldn't have saved the child in the OP, but allowing the experts to decide on specific cases may prove more beneficial than trying to make black and white rules.

Edited by Guest

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Another example of a clash of rights: the right of a child to professional Canadian medical aid and the right of a parent to look after their child in the best way that they believe.

Yes, as a conclusion, the child did not have to die. He could probably have been saved through accredited professional Canadian medical assistance. Therefore the system must send out a warning to others - either follow Canadian government ordered medical procedures or leave the country and employ your own medical religious based healing techniques. A jury of their peers found the guilty of "failing to provide their ill son with the necessaries of life.". The sentencing is to come and the max for this crime is 5 years in jail.

Personally, I am torn by this decision. These parents are not drugged up junkies who left their child to die of malnutrition. They are loving parents who did what they thought was best for their child. Their other children were and are being looked after very well and are all healthy. What is going to happen to these healthy youngsters when their parents are in jail? What kind of justice is going to be served in this case?

A sentencing should not create more damage than the original "crime".

I also find the precedence uncomfortable. It is one thing to cause the death of your child and another to make a mistake in choosing which medical treatment to employ. Does this mean that if you are not rushing your child to see a doctor at the merest indictation that something is wrong then you are guilty of negligence?

There was no evil or negative intent in this case and the couple should receive a suspended sentence so they can parent their other children.

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The anti-vax, anti-medicine or god will save my baby crowds are certainly a problem. Denying a child basic, life saving medical treatment should not be tolerated. However, we are also experiencing problems from helicopter parents at the other end of the spectrum. For example families are being investigated for allowing kids to play at the park or unsupervised in their own backyard. http://www.treehugger.com/culture/winnipeg-mom-investigated-letting-kids-play-alone-backyard.html

Obvious cases of negligence like this story in the OP lead us to the more interesting and divided discussion of where to draw the line. Or maybe we don't need a line, maybe we can allow medical professionals to determine what treatments are mandatory on a case by case basis. That wouldn't have saved the child in the OP, but allowing the experts to decide on specific cases may prove more beneficial than trying to make black and white rules.

Does this decision now mean that parents of children who come down with a disease which "could have" been prevented through recommended inoculation but chose not to, now guilty of "neglect".

If the parent has their child inoculated after warning from our government, and the child suffers some kind of negative reaction to that inoculation, then who is responsible?

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Does this decision now mean that parents of children who come down with a disease which "could have" been prevented through recommended inoculation but chose not to, now guilty of "neglect".

If the parent has their child inoculated after warning from our government, and the child suffers some kind of negative reaction to that inoculation, then who is responsible?

Good questions. I don't believe medical professionals can be held liable for following best practices or a treatment deemed the most likely to succeed. I do believe it is ethically worse to ignore the recommendations of medical professionals. However, when it comes to determining what recommendations must be adhered to and what can be ignored, I don't know where to draw the line.

Though, I believe the ignorance of the parents in this case did cause the death of their child, it wasn't intentional and I don't believe they deserve jail time. The parents must be devastated that their unfounded beliefs led to the death of their child. At the same time the child didn't deserve to die. So what do we do?

Should a parent who sincerely believes that their god will allow their child to live on water and light be excused when the baby inevitably dies? What level of ignorance is acceptable?

Edited by Guest

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...

Should a parent who sincerely believes that their god will allow their child to live on water and light be excused when the baby inevitably dies? What level of ignorance is acceptable?

Ignorance should not be treated as a crime. Stupid is stupid - not evil.

On the other hand, we do require disincentives to those who choose religion over medicine.

Historically, when the government got involved in religious sects, the solution was that the sect moved to another country. That may be the same case with this family.

In this case, it appears that the parents now understand that they were wrong. Give them a suspended sentence and let them try to reestablish a loving family.

Edited by Big Guy

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Historically, when the government got involved in religious sects, the solution was that the sect moved to another country. That may be the same case with this family.

Nowadays governments accommodate them. Alberta is one of 5 provinces where the government licences and regulates naturopathy. It gave the Alberta Association of Naturopathic Practitioners accreditation as the College of Naturopathic Doctors of Alberta in 2012.

Ironically a lot of people who subscribe to naturopathy appear to do so because they don't trust the government and believe it's involved in various conspiracies with doctors and drug companies to make people sick.

These are the Crazy Years we live in don't forget.

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Ignorance should not be treated as a crime. Stupid is stupid - not evil.

On the other hand, we do require disincentives to those who choose religion over medicine.

I agree with your assessment of this particular case, but how do codify parental responsibilities? Does our intent have to be evil to be negligent? Should we have some obligation to protect children from their care givers? Should sincere ignorance excuse all acts of negligence causing death?

If I sincerely believe that a natural remedy or religious incantation is the proper response to any medical emergency should I be protected? Would it make a difference, in your mind, if the child wasn't my own, like another kid over to play?

Could the ignorance defence be extended to other areas? If I were to park a car with manual transmission on a hill without engaging the parking brake and it rolled over a toddler, should I be excused if I prove to be unaware of that possibility?

Edited by Guest

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Should sincere ignorance excuse all acts of negligence causing death?

Let's hope not all cases however...a government's licence for something is a stamp of approval that amongst other things imparts a sense the thing is safe. Should people be faulted for trusting their government?

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