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  1. #1
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    Relious freedom to refuse medical treatment for children

    Should parents be able to deny conventional medical treatment to their children on religious grounds?

  2. #2
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    No. A child is separate from a parent. The child should not be subject to the disadvantages of the parent's belief structure if the child is not old enough to make up his or her mind about their own beliefs. The child should not be forced to have the same beliefs as the parent. The child should be brought up with the understanding that when they are old enough they have the right to determine their own set of beliefs even if they are different from the parent's.
    "Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail." -Ralph Waldo Emerson

  3. #3
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    Yes. The parent, under the legal bounds in which our laws state, have custody of their children and are entitled to all decisions that are within the powers granted by that custody. Now, from a personal standpoint I dont not believe the child should be denied the treatment if it is necessary (ie Chemo, chronic illness supression ect..). However, to take the power out of the hands of the parent and place it into a standard determined by the state would be the beginning, I would fear, of the denial of other rights that parents have.

    PS Can you define conventional, are we talking vaccinations, treatment for injury, chronic illness because this can greatly alter the point in which one would have to argue from.
    "ATF? What exactly does that stand for?"
    "Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms"
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  4. #4
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    What about children that are 12? Many children because of the religious upbringing refuse lifesaving treatments such as blood transfusions.If they rcv them they live with shame, and are disgraced by their peers & disciplinary action from the church. Some courts have seen kids in the 12-through-17-year-old range as "mature minors" who should be allowed to die. Should a 15 year old JW have the right to make a living will, refusing medical treatments? What age should the courts grant a childs refusal?

  5. #5
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    "ATF? What exactly does that stand for?"
    "Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms"
    "So, what else does you sell?"

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by SouthernDem
    PS Can you define conventional, are we talking vaccinations, treatment for injury, chronic illness because this can greatly alter the point in which one would have to argue from.
    It could be any or all the above..Many groups believe we are protected by GOD and their children should not rcv vaccinations.Vaccinations that a child is rewuired to rcv before entering school.

    Other Groups refuse blood/marrow transfusions, surgery, organ transplants& even insulin treatments for their diabetic children.
    Many sick children are not even taken to a Doctor, for the parents fear of their child receiving treatment that goes against their religion or beliefs.

  7. #7
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    Sorry if I seem crude, but think of it as "Natural Selection"
    "ATF? What exactly does that stand for?"
    "Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms"
    "So, what else does you sell?"

  8. #8
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    I cannot understand the religious belief of refusing medical treatment. We have a biological will to survive. To deny and surpress that will seems illogical to me. However, I'd have to say that the court should recognize the right to make a living will, refusing medical treatments when said child is 18. At 18, the child is an adult and capable of making decisions on their own. The courts should not allow a parent's beliefs to affect a child who is under 18.
    "Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail." -Ralph Waldo Emerson

  9. #9
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    If it didn't harm children I would...

  10. #10
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    Parent = Guardian
    Guardian = Decision Maker
    Decision Maker = Person With Final Say

    Granted, some people who hold these beliefs may not be suitable guardians but it is the states job to recognize that and take care of it.
    "ATF? What exactly does that stand for?"
    "Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms"
    "So, what else does you sell?"

  11. #11
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    I agree with you guys on most everything you say, with the exception of some vaccinations such as OPV or IPV (Polio Vaccines I just dont think they're necessary any more) but seeing it as being an infringment on rights if something were to change I cant get that excited about all of this.
    "ATF? What exactly does that stand for?"
    "Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms"
    "So, what else does you sell?"

  12. #12
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    I think the parent is the final decision maker in the family until the kid is able to make his own decision, i'm not sure around what age. I think people should use medical treatments, whether religious or not, it was there for us to use, why not use it? medical treatments are there to help us, not kill us, why not use it to our advantage? there are times when medical treatment can treat you, and that's where i turn to God, and i would start praying. Actually, you should pray about just about everything, i would even pray over my medicine and ask God to help me and that the medicine would do its full effect in me. Kids should not be subject to this, but it is up to the parents. If the kid wants to trust in God, let him, and God Bless him/her for their faith.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Atticus
    I cannot understand the religious belief of refusing medical treatment. We have a biological will to survive. To deny and surpress that will seems illogical to me. However, I'd have to say that the court should recognize the right to make a living will, refusing medical treatments when said child is 18. At 18, the child is an adult and capable of making decisions on their own. The courts should not allow a parent's beliefs to affect a child who is under 18.
    Religion is all about suppressing biological will. It's "civilized"
    Fortunately, the darkest of darkness is not as terrible as we fear.
    Unfortunately, the lightest of light, all things good, are not so wonderful as we hope for them to be.
    What, then, is left, but various shades of grey neutrality? Where are the heroes and villains? All I see are people.

  14. #14
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    I believe that if it is a legally sane adult's choice to withold vital treatment from themselves, fair enough. Where another sane adult is the subject for treatment, they must be given a chance to give their freely expressed voice. In all other cases the Court of Protection must be arbitor, perhaps in conjunction with other relatives who are not part of the same sect or cult.

    Jehovah's Witnesses (7th Day Adventists) can be a real problem in this direction. God preserve me from Fundies and odd balls.

    ps. The perception of some people, is that religion is ALL about repression - I personally acknowlege that self control may come into the equation from time to time, but for good reason. Repression is in the ball park of the politicisation of religion.
    "We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are." - Anais Nin.
    Emitte lucem et veritatem - Send out light and truth.
    'Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt' - Julius Caesar (rough translation, 'Men will think what they want to think')
    Kill my boss? Do I dare live out the American dream? - Homer Simpson.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Atticus
    No. A child is separate from a parent. The child should not be subject to the disadvantages of the parent's belief structure if the child is not old enough to make up his or her mind about their own beliefs.
    You assume that the child hasn't made up his/her mind about such beliefs. Furthermore, it's flawed reasoning.

    Scenerio: Parent believes the child should stop dating her cousin, and certainly not get married to him. Parent believes that it is wrong to date blood related, first cousins. Parent also believes the child should not get married until 18. The child is currently 16.

    By your logic: the child should not be "subject to the disadvantages of the parent's belief system"...afterall, the parent is just a big fuddy-duddy.

    The child should not be forced to have the same beliefs as the parent.
    This poses numerous problems as an objection.

    1) Where is the evidence that the child is "forced" to have the same beliefs?
    2) Who knows better...the parent? Or the child?
    3) The 16 yr old who wants to marry her blood, first-cousin...should not be forced to hold the same beliefs as the parent is what your argument would be.

    Well...beliefs aren't really forced, they are usually learned. Good moral structure (in this specific instance) would tell the child, that she ought not to be dating her cousin, or considering marry him at least, especially at such a young age. Admittedly, this is subjective. But then...so is the argument of medical treatment vs religious beliefs.

    Regardless...the child doesn't have to believe that she should wait until 18, and not marry her first-cousin. She can believe it is right all she wants. Whether she does or not, is ultimately up to her parents (in most states).

    The child should be brought up with the understanding that when they are old enough they have the right to determine their own set of beliefs even if they are different from the parent's.
    1) How do you know the child wasn't?
    2) How do you know the child doesn't adhere to the same belief system as the parent?

    The question is merely: Should parents be able to deny conventional medical treatment to their children on religious grounds?

    You assume much here, my young Padawan.
    -=]Apokalupsis[=-
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    I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend. - Thomas Jefferson




  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by tinkerbell
    Should parents be able to deny conventional medical treatment to their children on religious grounds?
    Yes, they should. Most people who would choose this option are under a belief that "God's will be done" and consider medical treatment "Human will" or "Excercising Free will in order to prevent God's will." (Has a familiar ring to another debate I'm involved in.)

    To deny parents the right to exercise religious freedom with their children where human intervention is concerned would be the same as denying parents the right to pray with their children in public or other religious practices.

    Some people view witholding medical treatment as abuse. Abuse is intentionally inflicting harm. Witholding medical treatment for religious reasons is not inflicting harm, but simply refraining from intervening with the life process.
    Souls of the animal kingdom: eagle, fox, bottle-nose dolphin, octopus, house cat. Okay, let's jump this jump. -- Rod Kimble

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis
    Should parents be able to deny conventional medical treatment to their children on religious grounds?
    What kind of parent would allow their child to die because of their religious beliefs? What kind of religious belief structure would force a parent to choose between their child's life and their faith? What happens if both parents have different ideologies and one doesn't want conventional medical treatment?

    If you are going to allow your child to die because you don't believe in medical treatment, then you don't deserve to be a parent and care for that child. It's that simple.
    "Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail." -Ralph Waldo Emerson

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis
    You assume that the child hasn't made up his/her mind about such beliefs. Furthermore, it's flawed reasoning.

    Scenerio: Parent believes the child should stop dating her cousin, and certainly not get married to him. Parent believes that it is wrong to date blood related, first cousins. Parent also believes the child should not get married until 18. The child is currently 16.

    By your logic: the child should not be "subject to the disadvantages of the parent's belief system"...afterall, the parent is just a big fuddy-duddy.


    Your scenario is completely innacurate, in that it does not encompass the ambiguity of the scenario we are debating. The fact that marrying one's cousin will produce a breeding of close genetics (hillbilly) can be proven. Having a child die because a parent thinks God disapproves cannot be proven.

    Quote Originally Posted by apok
    This poses numerous problems as an objection.

    1) Where is the evidence that the child is "forced" to have the same beliefs?
    2) Who knows better...the parent? Or the child?
    3) The 16 yr old who wants to marry her blood, first-cousin...should not be forced to hold the same beliefs as the parent is what your argument would be.
    1)Most of the believers in any given religion are what they are because they were raised to be so as children. Parents don't generally say "Here's a list of religions, pick one you like."
    2) In this case, if the child wants medecine in order to live, the child knows better.
    3) The prospective hillbilly is not informed of proven facts that will result in illegal and illogical marriage and breeding.
    Fortunately, the darkest of darkness is not as terrible as we fear.
    Unfortunately, the lightest of light, all things good, are not so wonderful as we hope for them to be.
    What, then, is left, but various shades of grey neutrality? Where are the heroes and villains? All I see are people.

  19. #19
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    Different approach to answering the topic:
    At what point (if ever) does the right to religious freedom take a backseat to a prohibition of willfull endangerment, neglect, (or, for the lawyers...whichever specific legal statute comes closest to that?).

    I'll propose that there is some point at which the freedom of religion for the parents must yield to the best interests of the child. I propose this because it seems consistent that every other parental right yields to (a judgement of) the best interest of the child.
    Its turtles, all the way down.

  20. #20
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    Regardless of religious, or otherwise, persuasions, we are all subject to the law of the land. Being subject to the law of the land in a democracy means that if you are in a minority, it is unreasonable for your will to control what is written in laws that need to follow the Benthamite tack of attempting to please most of the people most of the time. If too many exceptions are made then what we have is a road to anarchy.
    "We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are." - Anais Nin.
    Emitte lucem et veritatem - Send out light and truth.
    'Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt' - Julius Caesar (rough translation, 'Men will think what they want to think')
    Kill my boss? Do I dare live out the American dream? - Homer Simpson.

 

 
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