Baby dies because of super religious parents.

@mentalward (14695)
United States
September 18, 2009 9:42am CST
I was flipping through TV channels and came across Court TV. There is a married couple on trial for manslaughter of their 18 month old child because they refused the baby medical treatment. The baby died of pneumonia and a mass on her neck. Apparently, she had a cancerous tumor that was growing rapidly. The parents believed they could heal the child through prayer and "laying on of hands". They are now on trial for manslaughter. How far do you think religion should go before medical intervention is necessary? I would think that, as the child's parent, if the child was not responding to prayers, I would want to get her to medical care as soon as possible. This baby's father is on the stand, looking very magnanimous in his belief that he did nothing wrong. It is a case of religion versus medicine. The man admitted that they have never "cured" anyone of a major illness through prayers or hands on treatments before. I think that prayers and hands on have their place but, when it is apparent that it's not working, medical intervention is essential. This was an 18 month old baby with no voice of his own. He had never seen a doctor in his life so his parents had no clue that the baby had a tumor. The father claimed he thought it was God taking the illness out of the child through that lump in his neck. They were waiting for it to "pop". I am disgusted by this. What say you?
4 people like this
22 responses
@JenInTN (27547)
• United States
18 Sep 09
I have seen several cases on trial here in which families have denied their child medical treatment because of their religion. I think it's the Mormons here that refuse it. I think the Amish refuse also. I think that it's a shame that children die just because the parents think it's God's will. Your right about the child not having a voice. Makes you wonder if they would also refuse treatment if it were themselves laying there unable to breathe.
1 person likes this
@mentalward (14695)
• United States
18 Sep 09
Oh, I forgot to add that they didn't mention any adults in this sect dying from lack of medical treatment, only babies.
21 Sep 09
I find this heartbreaking...that poor child! Those parents must be retarded, this beggars belief! Any parent, would instantly get the doctor, in such a circumstance, despite their beliefs. This is so sad, i will never understand people, that do this kind of thing. That poor poor baby, must have been in so much pain, this is an awful thing to have happened. The parents deserve to be punsihed, they neglected that poor baby.
1 person likes this
@mentalward (14695)
• United States
21 Sep 09
Hi forestgold! Welcome to myLot. I have just looked up the verdict and found that the father, only, was found guilty of criminal mistreatment. He was acquitted of manslaughter and his wife was acquitted on both charges. The father was given a 60 day jail sentence with 5 years probation and is filing an appeal! I find this so horribly despicable I can't fathom it! These people are free to do this again, and again and again. I also find this hard to believe because the U.S. government has separated church and state (although our paper currency still says "In God We Trust" which is awfully hypocritical). Now, it looks like you can cry "religion" and get away with murder. This is just one more reason for me to dislike our government as being very unfair. I don't know how others feel, but I will worry for the fate of all babies born to this religious sect. Unbelievable!
@enola1692 (3325)
• United States
19 Sep 09
I can't believe this one if that was my child I would have brought her to every doctor in america to try an get her better yes I do believe in prayer but I also think besides prayer you should do whatever you can to help your child bring her to a doctor that god gave the knowledge to take care of that child
1 person likes this
• India
18 Sep 09
God does not prevent anyone from taking the treatment. It is the blind faith by the parents? Rather they should have taken the child to the hospital and treated for the cancerous mass, and then they should have prayed the Lord for cure. The trial imposed on them is justifiable.
1 person likes this
@mentalward (14695)
• United States
18 Sep 09
I agree with you. I believe they should have taken the baby for medical treatment but also prayed according to their religion for a cure. I apologize but I mistakenly called the baby a "he" when it was a girl. She was also only 15 months old instead of 18 months old.
@aseretdd (13736)
• Philippines
19 Sep 09
This is really sad... some people tend to misunderstand religion and the way of God... reminds me of a case here in my country... where a conjoined twins who has a great chance of survival if they separated throught operation... everything was actually set and the parents need to pay anything because a lot of people donated money for the operation to push through... just so the twins will be able to lead normals lives when they grow up... But the parents refused... because if operated on... the babies would need blood transfusion... and that sort of procedure is against their religion... this angered a lot of people... and was even a cause of debate here in my country... but in the long run... the will of the parents prevailed... and twins are still alive... all grown up... but still conjoined and dependent on their parents and relatives to take care of them...
@mentalward (14695)
• United States
20 Sep 09
That is so sad, aseretdd. Those twins could have had a normal life if it had not been for their parent's religious beliefs. If people like this could only see that a doctor's ability to heal is a gift in itself, so many lives could be made better. Now, those poor twins have had to go through a life which is really not much of a life at all, being totally dependent on others for their care. Hearing stories like this makes me so sad. How can the parents not understand the miracle of healing through doctors? My youngest son had pneumonia once. I rushed him right to the hospital. While there receiving treatment, I was taught by a pulmonary specialist how to help clear my son's lungs of fluid after he was discharged from the hospital two days later. These parents of this little baby had no such knowledge. The only thing they said they did to help their baby was to clear her mouth of mucus when the baby coughed it up. They didn't mention patting the baby on her back, semi-hard, or rubbing her back to help move the fluid out of the lungs. It was blatantly obvious that they had no knowledge whatsoever of caring for a child as sick as this one was. They are definitely guilty of neglect and child endangerment. I hope they have the book thrown at them and are never able to conceive another baby.
1 person likes this
@commanderxo (1496)
• Canada
19 Sep 09
I'd say that their prayers have been answered. God has put them on trial for manslaughter...and righteously so. cdrxo
• Canada
21 Sep 09
Uh huh. Now let's all pray these two don't have another child. cdrxo
@thea09 (18316)
• Greece
18 Sep 09
Hi Mentalward, what is there to say beyond complete guilt through total ignorance and complete lack of parental responsibility. Did these people live in a religious vacuum in which medicine is seen as the work of the devil or some such nonsense. No doubt leniency will be extended to them due to their misguided stupidity and I'm sure they will receive a lighter sentence by harping on about their religion than a parent equally as culpable through neglect. And upon release no doubt they will be allowed to go out and reproduce again having refused to abandon any one of their blind convictions. (Please can I call you something other than Mentalward now).
@thea09 (18316)
• Greece
18 Sep 09
Hi Marti, it appears we are on the same wavelenght here as I don't think you'd commented above when I wrote about the lenient sentence and more children, or if you had I hadn't read it. Mind you when they are in prison they can't proclaim they've just found god to use as an excuse for their appeal. Wonder if they actually have any advocates out there thinking they were right. Until I read your comment above I had just presumed it was the same cult who don't believe in blood transfusions for their dying children, hadn't realised there were more religous loonies on the loose.
• Philippines
19 Sep 09
Good day... Medical intervention shouldn't be decided against religious belief or vice verse instead they should work hand in hand. We are both physical and spiritual being and we should be treated as such, one should not dominate the other. A person wouldn't survive without these two attributes. Common sense should also come into play. I mean as parents they should monitor their child progress whether he was getting better or worse. Going back, one thing that proves we are also of physical attributes is that we need a shelter. I mean if we all are spiritual then we don't need a house to live in. We could just stay outside and live under the sky but we need shelter to live in so we make use of God's gift such as logs and stones and build the house same goes with our body. Medicines are of man's creation from God's gift. From molecules to compounds to help ease our physical pain and we should use them and thank God for the raw materials.
@mentalward (14695)
• United States
20 Sep 09
You are very correct, blackmantra. Our bodies do have specific needs and sometimes that means medical intervention. How these people were able to stand by as their baby's health declined, I'll never know or understand. Relying solely on God to heal their child is not only foolish but dangerous as well, as they have found out. These are religious fanatics. It goes hand-in-hand with mental illness. I just hope they never have any other children. This religous sect, it was discovered, has had more than one baby die because of lack of medical treatment. I'm just glad that these parents were discovered and prosecuted, although it will never bring back that poor baby's life.
@GSnake (46)
• Italy
19 Sep 09
I'm really disappointed. How can a parent do this to her/his son/daughter?
@mentalward (14695)
• United States
20 Sep 09
Very true, GSnake. As a parent myself, there is NO WAY I could sit by and watch my baby die. These religious fanatics are totally guilty of murdering their baby. I hope they get the book thrown at them. I also hope it teaches their very warped minds a lesson, that they cannot stand by and watch a baby die when it probably could have lived with proper medical treatment. They do not deserve to have another child.
• India
19 Sep 09
Where medical intervention is needed, it should be accepted. till date no disease has been cured by prayers. it is disgusting to hear that there are still people who believe in such superstitious things.
@mentalward (14695)
• United States
20 Sep 09
Very true, tulips. The super-religious will tell you that illnesses have been cured by prayer only but, what they don't see, or refuse to see, is that illnesses have also spontaneously disappeared to non-believers, too. Prayer may have it's place but nothing replaces proper medical treatment. Allowing a baby to die because of religious beliefs is no better than murder.
@jomaru88 (36)
• Philippines
19 Sep 09
They are not religious, they have no proper knowledge of how to appreciate one's life. Prayers are good with proper medications. Good day.
@mentalward (14695)
• United States
20 Sep 09
Excellent response, jomaru. Prayers are good with proper medications. Nothing could be truer or more simply put. I just wish people like these parents could understand that. They are dangerously closed-minded. Putting their own lives at stake by not seeking medical attention is one thing but putting a baby's life at stake is unacceptable. I don't care what your religion or lack of religion is. I hope these parents get the highest sentence possible and that they are never able to have another child. How that poor baby must have suffered!
@paula27661 (15898)
• Australia
19 Sep 09
I have heard of cases where children have been refused blood transfusions and the like due to religious beliefs and I cannot fathom standing back and doing nothing but pray while my child lies there dying; that’s some faith, I’ll give them that! It is stupid, blind faith; if only theses people could see that praying to God would help in the child’s healing along with the doctors whose gifts from God can perform miracles these days. I feel so sad for this poor baby...People like these should not be allowed to have any more children...irresponsible fools...
@mentalward (14695)
• United States
20 Sep 09
I totally agree, paula. It really makes me angry when dangerously irresponsible people like this have children only to allow them to die instead of seeking medical attention when there are people in this world who would make excellent parents but cannot conceive a child. I have a cousin who, with his wife, are the nicest, most caring, loving people I've ever met. My cousin is an ordained minister but doesn't shove religion down anyone's throat. If you want to talk religion, he's right there but he won't bother you with it is you're not interested. They could never have a child. Then, we hear stories like this one, where a baby could still be alive and happy if it weren't for the parents' stupid belief! Religion only goes so far but when it interferes with medical necessity, that's taking it WAY too far. I also believe these people should never have more children and I hope they don't. I'm sure a lot of believers pray they don't, too.
1 person likes this
• United States
19 Sep 09
well after reading this story i am thoroughly disgusted by the way these parents treated a medical emergency of a baby. Leave the religeous stuff to churches and leave medical things to the doctors who knows what they are doing. I think that having faith is something is good for you but when you try to mix those two realms bad things happen.
• India
19 Sep 09
Definitely medical intervenion i.e. medical treatment to such innocent child or for that matter any human being or living creature when in need. Prayers are supportive measure to human efforts. As child had cancerous tumor which requires immediate medical attention & treatment with proper Diagnosis by learned & qualified Doctors. for provision of funds childs parents should have approach for financial help from Charitable/ Social Organisations. Their Behaviour was inhuman as well asw ridiculous in just keeping faith in prayers only no efforts to save a child. This is a result of blind faith & lack of civilization or basic education. We noticed such beliefs mostly in tribes & nomades, it is very difficult to convince such people.
@elmiko (6638)
• United States
19 Sep 09
theres a point when other options are necessary. obviously these parents didn't get it. i actually wonder how sick these parents have ever been to believe stuff like this.
@mentalward (14695)
• United States
19 Sep 09
Yeah, it makes you wonder how they could have such a steadfast belief that God would heal their baby and not take the baby to a doctor, even after it was blatantly apparent that the baby wasn't getting better, only getting worse. They must be aware of the number of doctors in the world and why so many people go to them when they are sick. From what I've seen, most religions believe in doctors and the "gift" they have been given for healing the sick and injured. Why this group of people refuse to seek medical treatment is beyond me. As a parent myself, there's no way I could ignore my child's very obvious need for medical attention. Once that little baby lapsed into a coma, and these parents STILL refused to take her to a hospital, it makes you question their sanity. They certainly are not qualified to be parents!
@dragon54u (31645)
• United States
18 Sep 09
People like that are disgusting and at the same time pathetic. If they would read their Bible and truly study it, they'd know that God gave us brains to use and He expects us to use them. Medicine is one example of that. I don't understand people who deny that medicine is a gift from God. Those parents should be sterilized.
• United States
18 Sep 09
Unfortunately, this case came from a city only an hour away from me and for weeks it was on the news every night. I am a christian but I take my children to the doctor because God gave them the brain and the education to make people well. These beliefs and other things people claim 'God told me to do it' give christians a bad name. But I don't believe that just because they made some bad choices that they are bad people. I'm sure that the mother at least regrets what they did. And they will have to live with it for the rest of their lives. And never forget it.
@mentalward (14695)
• United States
18 Sep 09
That is very true, they will have to live with it. The problem, as I see it, is that the parents do not seem to have any remorse over not getting their baby to a doctor. They seem almost smug. They may feel regret but they are certainly not showing it. They appear to feel totally justified. That's the scary part. This baby's life probably could have been saved if they had gotten her to a doctor in time. If I had seen swelling on my child's neck for months, no, never mind. My child would not have had a swelling on his neck for months because I would have taken him to the doctor as soon as I noticed it. You would think that, after even a week, they would think that MAYBE a doctor should take a look at it. But, they're saying that it runs in the family. But, the way they describe it, they have a swelling in the gland located just behind and below the ears. This baby's neck was swollen from her jaw to her shoulder. It's a fine line to be sure but religious beliefs should be held accountable at some point.
@bonbon664 (3470)
• Canada
18 Sep 09
These stories come up way too often for me. I'm disgusted with people like this, how about praying that the doctors can do a good job. Laying on of hands is a bunch of hooey, and will never cure anybody. These people need some severe punishment, and I hope they get it. Religion is no excuse for not looking after your children properly.
@vipinl (802)
• India
18 Sep 09
It was in a way severe child abuse, by not taking child to the doctor even knowing the seriousness of the disease. I am wondering from what part of world those disgusting parents were. They have killed there child and should be punished for that and not be allowed to have another.. and what is the religion that allows one to kill people. They should be punished severely to ensure that a lesson i learnt by all those religios dummies.
@rdadey (484)
• Canada
18 Sep 09
The punishment for them will not be harsh enough. They very cruelly watched an innocent child die because of their manic beliefs. They will get off with light sentences but they should be surgically rendered sterile so they may never have children again. For me, what they did is 1st degree murder and nothing less.
@mentalward (14695)
• United States
18 Sep 09
I agree. After watching this for awhile, I found that they are also charged with severe negligence along with manslaughter. There is no excuse for them not taking the child in for medical attention. They are also members of some, what they are calling "controversial" church where they do not believe in the medical profession at all. I just saw a photo of the baby at what looked like less than a year old. She had a rather obvious lump on her neck at that time. I agree that these people should not be allowed to procreate if they will not take the legal and moral responsibility of getting their children the best medical care possible. At least the court seems to be seeing this as a serious crime and are not taking into account the parents religious belief. I feel so badly for the children of the fanatically religious because they don't have a voice other than that of their parents.