At last check, little Alfie Evans was hanging on for dear life at Alder Hey Hospital. His parents have lost their bid to bring him to Italy for treatment, a last ditch effort perhaps but alas, we’ll never know the outcome. The same doctors who said he would quickly stop breathing and quietly slip away when they removed his life support four days ago have decided it would be best to just end the little guy’s suffering by letting him slowly asphyxiate; a fate and an ending I’m quite sure none of the nitwits on the UK’s highest court would wish to endure personally. The European Court of Human Rights also declined to intervene, telling you all you need to know about human rights in the European Union.

who gets to decide?

When does one become so cold and indifferent to the suffering of others that you could literally stand by and watch this child suffer this death? I can’t grasp the concept here; someone needs to help me understand. I’m absolutely serious. We go to great lengths to sustain those who have robbed us, assaulted us, beaten us, raped us, and murdered us; yet we declare that this child needs to die; it is our will. On strictly moral and ethical grounds, of course.

To start with, we have socialized medicine to consider here; is Alfie diagnosed with a degenerative brain disease or not? Should it matter to anyone outside his immediate family? Only in the sense that hey, you’ve got to understand that there are limited resources available and we can’t be wasting time and money on an individual with no hope for survival. That’s the reality of it my friends. This is what the citizens of the UK have chosen; this is what they want. It’s all part of the comfort and trust they place in the hands of those they never meet, never see, never speak to, who ultimately get to decide who is and is not of any value to the citizenry at large. On strictly moral and ethical grounds, of course.

And so we have a political structure that wishes to intrude into the private lives, rights and decisions of its citizens. It’s one thing to decide that you’re not willing to foot the bill; quite another to say, “and because we don’t wish to foot the bill, you’re not allowed to go anywhere else on the planet either. You see, we don’t want you to prolong his suffering and he should pass with dignity.” Again, on strictly moral and ethical grounds, of course.

This has always struck me as odd; I have friends, dear friends, who have repeatedly crossed the border to the very same country that they crap on on a daily basis over how selfish we Americans are, how narrow minded, how this, how that, only because they needed that MRI quicker than 7 months from now, or their government funded knee replacement was denied or their next dental appointment is not approved for another 3 months. (Chew on the other side…) Odd, as I said, because socialized medicine is rationing, pure and simple, and it benefits no one; least of all those who continue to support it all the while endeavoring how to get around it. And in all of these countries, you can hear the same stories of shortages here or there, shortages of beds, shortages of diagnostic tools, of doctors, nurses, drugs, bedpans, and toilet paper for goodness sakes… And you have bureaucrats insisting that you have rights and freedoms, no more or no less than your neighbor but oh, by the way, we decided today that you’re going to have to die laying on a gurney in the hallway, gasping and wheezing because we don’t really think you’re worth the money and we don’t have a room for you to expire in anyway.

So just what is the appeal of socialized medicine and how the heck does it work? If it’s about cost, why can’t the UK just let the parents take their son to Italy; it will cost the UK nothing to not condemn this child to death. A bonus if he passes away out of the country; a sort of morbid “told ya so” from those who erroneously thought he would pass quickly, even after not being able to diagnose him in the first place. So maybe it’s not about money.

Maybe it is about compassion and morality and ethics and all of the other flowery words they use to stir up emotion and belief in the system. Again, is it really moral, ethical, compassionate, whatever buzzword you want to use to persuade the easily persuaded, to allow this child to suffer this slow, agonizing death when another country, another group of doctors elsewhere believe they can offer hope? Isn’t that what real compassion is? Is this about professional, or national pride? If it costs you nothing, if there is a chance that you might be wrong, doesn’t this child, any child, any human deserve that chance?

No, he doesn’t deserve a chance. You see, it doesn’t matter that it will cost them nothing to let his parents try; it is, and always will be about controlling the population; controlling their citizens by restricting their rights to make decisions about their health and the health of their loved ones. And, it’s about the superiority of government power and position over parental rights. Ultimately, governments that should be inferior and responsible to their citizens, get to have the final say over your life, your death, and that of your children. And you willingly gave them that power. Not only are you decent and caring for the common good; you’re quite moral and ethical too. That is until you drive across the border for that crown that’s been bothering you.

I don’t expect this little boy to live much longer. I’m not a doctor and have no idea what his true prognosis is. I don’t quite believe that anyone truly does. We may not fully know what his ailment was until he’s autopsied. But the cause of his death will surely be the heath care system that has more to lose by his recovery than by his passing. No, not a doctor; a father. And like many others, one who would be doing everything I could to save my son or daughter if I were in that position. And I would look for guidance from our doctors and get down on my knees and beg for clarity from above. And at some point, I too would decide that I cannot allow my loved one to suffer any longer.

As a father, that is not only my right; it is my burden. It should not belong to someone who can only value the life of my loved one on the basis of the color in his ledger.

Advertisements