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Arrest ordered for mother who refused chemotherapy for her son

Associated Press

Authorities across the United States on the lookout for the pair, who fled shortly after a doctor's appointment and court-ordered X-ray ...Read the full article

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  1. Sceptical Reader from Toronto, Canada writes: I hope the lock up the silly lawyer who aided this mom in running away with this child who obviously needs medical help.
  2. Mel Musson from Hamilton, Bermuda writes: You “Christians&8221; go on about how great and mighty and powerful your &8220;God&8221; is, but yet when a mother refuses to give her sick child radiation or chemo therapy for religious reasons, you same Christians decide that she is a bad mother and guilty of child abuse - it seems that even &8220;Christians&8221; believe that prayer is BS!
  3. Kim Philby from Canada writes: Mel: it sounds more like they believe in natural healing, rather than the power of prayer. Of course, that begs the question, what is "natural" healing? Radiation treatment probably wouldn't come to mind, but radioactivity is natural; even people emit a small amount of it.

    While the kid's best chance may be conventional treatment supplemented with vitamins, good nutrition, etc., I can certainly see why some people are sceptical about chemo and radiation. Even some kids who are "cured" suffer permanent negative effects (e.g., learning disorders) from those treatments (see A Lion In The House, a documentary about kids with cancer), and some die despite treatments that render the rest of their too short lives pretty miserable.
  4. Some Thoughts from Canada writes: Chemophobia in action...just the extreme edge of the "natural", organic nonsense.
  5. Commander Groovechild from Canada writes: For me this isn't an easy call. Although it is true that cancer is "treatable", the treatments will not necessarily cure the patient. Some doctors feel that the treatments would help, but there are certainly always doctors on the other side who feel just the opposite. If I take my car to a mechanic, no doubt about it he will say that the car needs work. The parents are mostly focused on ensuring that their child survives. Regardless of whether or not the child receives treatment, unfortunately he might not survive. The religious backgrounds of the individuals are not relevant. However if we consider survivorship as a leading indicator of God's love, and the fact that most of the world's population believe in God, it would appear that God does indeed prefer religious people. Those that do not believe in him appear to have impaired survival representation.
  6. Wayne Canadian from Canada writes: This is all about cash and not God , its expensive to get medical treatment in America , maybe she cant afford the high costs.
  7. Eat Your Weedies from Canada writes: These people are crazy. Their religious (or whatever) beliefs are just an excuse to be irresponsible. BTW- There is nothing in Roman Catholicism that excuses a parent from fighting for their child's life.

    This reminds me of the Dueck case. Are these people aware of what happened in the end?
  8. Paul S from Stratford, Canada writes: Commander Groovechild from Canada writes: Although it is true that cancer is "treatable", the treatments will not necessarily cure the patient. Some doctors feel that the treatments would help, but there are certainly always doctors on the other side who feel just the opposite.

    I think it's safe to say the MAJORITY of doctors would agree the treatment would help. And has the first post pointed out - nobody really believes in God - if they did we would spend our day in prayer and there would be no need for doctors.
  9. Slippy 1st from Edmonton, Canada writes: Protip: Medicine is the best medicine.
  10. Conservatives Lie from Canada writes: I am so sick of these idiots who don't have a clue when it comes to science of medicine going and making incredibly detrimental choices for their children like this. We have religious fools who deny their children life saving blood transfusions, push genital mutilation like male circumcision that has no serious backing in medicine, refuse to allow their children to immunized against dangerous diseases, and (apparently) run from cancer treatment. It may be true that cancer treatment is not a guarantee, but doing nothing only guarantees that it will kill you.
  11. Robert Slaven from Camarillo CA USA (in employment exile), Canada writes: Nothing in life is a guarantee. And yes, chemo is hell.

    But given the choice between doing something hellacious that gives a 90% survival chance, and doing nothing and having a 5% survival chance, I know what choice I'd make.

    I hope Minnesota has laws similar to Canada's "criminal negligence causing bodily harm/death". And I hope mom (and the lawyer, and dad, and whoever else is responsible for this mess) are prosecuted under those laws.

    And I hope the kid, despite his own cluelessness, manages to survive.
  12. A. Nonymous from Job Ville, United States writes: Healthcare is expensive, and we clearly don't have enough for everyone. If people want to refuse treatment, no matter what the age, let them!

    This is one way to both ration healthcare, and let the problem of overpopulation take care of itself. Everybody wins!
  13. Kim Philby from Canada writes: Robert Slaven: the kid has a learning disability and cannot read. Calling him "clueless" is a bit harsh.
  14. D N M from Canada writes: This isn't an easy issue. My personal belief is that people should be allowed to choose their own treatments (when it comes to terminal illnesses, includes the right to die in peace, in the manner chosen by the sick person). There is so much more out there than conventional medicine that adults can use to treat many ailments.

    The important word is adults, though. When it comes to kids, they don't have the mental capacity or understanding to make such choices. I'm just not sure it's the place of the State to make these decisions.

    Tough issue and I hope mom and son come out of this whole situation alright.
  15. mike the piano man from Canada writes: She is breaking the law and should suffer the consequenses. You cannot pick and choose the laws you decide to disreguard. Another example of distorted religious thinking.
  16. Beatriz Perez-Sanchez from Toronto, Canada writes: The so-called 'benefits' of chemotherapy are grossly overrated. Many cancer patients would not undergo chemotherapy if they had to do it again. The oncologists almost always withhold vital information about the risks of chemotherapy - and they are many. In some cases, chemotherapy actually makes the patient sicker, and destroys what little quality of life is remaining, especially in the case of Stage IV cancer. Although the verdict is still out on many of the so-called 'natural healing' alternatives, they are (for the most part) easier than chemotherapy. This woman's real 'crime' is not that she is denying treatment to her child. That is not the case at all. She is challenging the system in a major way. Rather than subject her child to toxic drugs whose use only serves to enrich the already obscenely wealthy pharmaceutical giants, she is seeking alternatives whose producers are not in a position to line the pockets of politicians and influence legislation. This is all about money and power. The state's supposed concern for the child's welfare is merely a smoke screen.
  17. Angry West Coast Canuck from Canada writes: This is the USA, where if you don't have insurance, and even if you do, you can easily lose everything and go bankrupt for the slightest illness or accident.

    This is the USA, that paragon of defending "religious freedom", so long as those claiming that freedom are wealthy. Poorer religions or cults don't fare so well, but rich ones thrive.

    The article says nothing about whether the state was paying for these court-mandated procedures. Is this a case of the state requiring a family to go into bankruptcy to pay for very expensive treatments? We don't know. Does this state allow Jehovah's Witnesses - a very rich and pervasive cult - to refuse potentially life saving blood transfusions? Again, we don't know. So much is left unsaid in this article about the possible hypocrisy (or not) of the local government, and other issues that might have a bearing on the case.
  18. mike the piano man from Canada writes: Right. So she ran away with the kid because she couldnt afford treatment. This is getting good!
  19. Harry Rosen from Nowhere, Canada writes: My question to the readers on this post, especially the early ones, is what right does the State have in the raising of a child? The US, as well as Canada, have a Constitution and a Charter of Rights, that guarantees the rights and freedoms of individual people. I agree that that includes a child as well. In the case of a minor, the leagl guardian is the parent: why does the State interfere in the right of a Parent to bring up a child in any form he or she wishes? This parent has made a decision that she thinks is best for her child. It is not criminal to refuse medical treatment if you dont think that that is in the best interest of YOUR child. But apparently, in the US, which boasts about its democracy and freedoms and rights and so on, it is.
  20. Sebastian Cobe from Calgary, Canada writes: Let these idiots allow themselves to be killed off without proper medical treatment. We don't need crazies around anyway.
  21. B.C. Expat from Ottawa-Hull, FCR, Canada writes: Why are there are least two uninformed posters blaming the U.S. medical system? She is trying to avoid the treatment because she has unusual religious beliefs. She would not be running from the law if this was an ability-to-pay issue, she would be asking for help. Take your embarrassing schadenfreude elsewhere and stop making fellow Canadians look like petty a-holes.
  22. O Perdana from Canada writes: You will do as we say.
    You will do as you are told.
    You will take our medicine.
    You will be safe with us.

    We are not the enemy within.
    We will protect you.
    We need your obedience.

    You will submit.
  23. Harvey Mushman from cambridge, Canada writes: Quote from article:

    "Colleen Hauser testified earlier that she had been treating his cancer with herbal supplements, vitamins, ionized water and other natural alternatives."

    Very good Colleen...although I think you forgot the part about cutting the head off a live chicken and sprinkling him with the blood.
  24. va donc chier from Canada writes: Beatriz Perez-Sanchez from Toronto, Canada writes: Although the verdict is still out on many of the so-called 'natural healing' alternatives, they are (for the most part) easier than chemotherapy.

    Not so. The verdict IS out. Its a HOAX put forward by predators preying on despair. Landis is a fraudulent predator and should also be thrown in jail.

    http://www.quackwatch.org/00AboutQuackwatch/altseek.html
  25. Jenny any Dots from Canada writes: Beatriz, the fact she is challenging the system in a 'major way' would be fine if it were her life in the balance. Also, your comment about stage IV cancer is kind of moot here as the child is not at that level yet. Yes chemo sucks but I know lots of people who have survived Hodgkins for years by following the regime of chemo and radiation. He should be given a chance to life...not forced to die by his mothers views.

    P.S. my brother died of Hodgkins and I advocated for no treatment for him (he chose chemo, though). However, he was at level IVB Hodgkins and had a compromised immune system. You have to pick your battles!
  26. Ivan Wilson from Canada writes: Throw the b!tch in jail and get the kid fixed.

    Next.
  27. Sophia L from Cornwall, Canada writes: I believe that sleeping in peace is better than living in pain.

    Doctors may save this boy's life, but they can not give him a happy life.

    His mother loves him for sure.
  28. Dawn from Minnesota from Minnesota, United States writes: I would like to add some details that may not have been available to the writer of this article. The following information is factual, not my opinion. This information was reported on WCCO news last night:

    Daniel expressed interest in learning more about his options for treatment to the family lawyer. Daniel told the family lawyer and others that on a scale of 1 to 10, the pain he was experiencing was a 10.

    MY OPINION: Taking the child into hiding was the wrong thing for the mother to have done. Whatever her beliefs, it is clear that Daniel wanted to learn about his options and wanted to consider medical treatment. Daniel is suffering and he DOES have a point of view. Daniel's wishes should be taken into consideration, which would probably result in some form of medical intervention.
  29. Jenny any Dots from Canada writes: So, Sophia, if he can't have a happy life he should die of a curable disease...forgive me but I fail to see the logic/compassion/reality of your statement. None of us is guaranteed a 'happy' life.
  30. Nick B. from Canada writes: This kid is too young to have a real opinion of his own about his treatment options. Reports suggest he cannot read and if that's the case I doubt he has had the chance to even do adequate research. He has early stage Hodgkin's disease, which chemotherapy treats very, very effectively. Medical evidence already shown (presented at court yesterday) proves that the cancerous mass had shrunk while he was on chemo and is now back. He's going to die for nothing without proper care, and as he is so young, that's negligence by his parents.
  31. Common Sense for Dollars from Vancouver, Canada writes: Toss the child into treatment & counselling, toss the mother into a courtroom to explain why she should not be jailed for contempt of court, reckless endangerment, & child abuse. As for her beliefs, she can not be charged for being stupid & dumber than a bag full of hammers.
  32. anonymous in Ont from Canada writes: Conservatives Lie from Canada writes: I am so sick of these idiots who don't have a clue when it comes to science of medicine going and making incredibly detrimental choices for their children like this. We have religious fools who deny their children life saving blood transfusions, push genital mutilation like male circumcision that has no serious backing in medicine, refuse to allow their children to immunized against dangerous diseases, and (apparently) run from cancer treatment. It may be true that cancer treatment is not a guarantee, but doing nothing only guarantees that it will kill you
    -----------------------------------------------
    Exactly! A child can not make an informed decision & when a parent for whatever reason can't make an unbiased knowledgeable choice then our govt needs to step in. The child is what matters in the end
  33. Dawn from Minnesota from Minnesota, United States writes: Nick B. from Canada writes: This kid is too young to have a real opinion of his own about his treatment options. Reports suggest he cannot read and if that's the case I doubt he has had the chance to even do adequate research. He has early stage Hodgkin's disease, which chemotherapy treats very, very effectively.----

    To Nick B: Daniel expressed interest in knowing about other options. Doctors have spoken to him. Daniel may not be able to read, but he knows he is sick, and he wanted to hear about different forms of medical treatment.

    Chemo killed a friend of mine who had an allergic reaction to his first treatment. Another friend took chemo, was too sick to continue with chemo, and fully recovered without further treatment. Many people are cured or have their lives extended for years with chemo.

    I am neither for nor against chemo. It works for some people, and it doesn't work for others.

    I think Daniel should have responsible decisions available to him, and I think he should be an informed participant in the process. I hope Daniel is found while he still has a chance to get some form of responsible medical treatment.
  34. J S from Canada writes: What happened to freedom of religion? Isn't it in the US Bill of Rights? The parents refused treatment. The son agrees with his parents and believes chemo is poison. Why are US authorities forcing this person into something against his will? Isn't this one of the reasons why the US Bill of Rights was formed??
  35. Rube Goldberg from Beach without name, Vanuatu writes: and how is this different from Jehovah's witnesses refusing blood products? Furthermore, it is standard procedure in, for instance Canada, that a person is allowed to decline medical treatment based on individual autonomy. That extents to a guardian and child. No wonder that in the world of medical ethics few people look to the US for a precedent. Remember Terry Schiavo? Only in the good old US of A ...
  36. s. truszkowski from toronto, Canada writes: re: va donc chier from Canada writes: Beatriz Perez-Sanchez from Toronto, Canada writes: Although the verdict is still out on many of the so-called 'natural healing' alternatives, they are (for the most part) easier than chemotherapy.

    Not so. The verdict IS out. Its a HOAX put forward by predators preying on despair. Landis is a fraudulent predator and should also be thrown in jail.

    http://www.quackwatch.org/00AboutQuackwatch/altseek.html

    _____

    you claim that the verdict is out on ALL natural cancer treatments because of statements made by a clearly biased, pro-government, pro-big-pharma, pro-allopathic medicine website? with a clearer understanding of the breadth of natural options to augment cancer treatment, you might have noticed that quackwatch only serves to attack the treatments that are absurd, and thus uses these examples to tarnish the validity of other natural treatment options, which used alone or in conjunction with conventional allopathic treatments, may offer the potential to aid in quality of life, palliative care and disease modification. lastly, i guess the massive healthcare research and development machinations throughout the world must not have heard about the verdict from quackwatch. investigations into the clinical efficacy of many natural therapies are ongoing worldwide. the outcomes of such research, whether positive or negative, add to the constantly evolving, and often politicized body of knowledge that is evidence-based medicine and thus aid in caring for the patient and not the disease.

    mahalo.
  37. Stephen John from Toronto, Canada writes: Forcing medical treatment on us all is not what I want my courts or government doing with their time.

    Running is not the answer either

    It's almost like a Euthenasia case somewhat......
  38. Dik Coates from Canada writes:
    mike the piano man from Canada writes: She is breaking the law and should suffer the consequenses. You cannot pick and choose the laws you decide to disreguard. Another example of distorted religious thinking.

    And maybe the laws are encroaching on areas they shouldn't be... like the lady on the escalator. One of the reasons a FIJA is making greater inroads.

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