Traditional Treatment for Cancer is Mandated by U.S. Law?

Submitted by on Thursday, August 17, 2006No Comments

As reported by ABCNews last night [August 16, 2006], Abraham Cherrix of Chincoteague, Virginia had to fight his local government to refuse chemotherapy. The 15 year old had decided, that in the course of his treatment for Hodgkins Disease, he wanted to stop with the chemotherapy and radiation. Despite past treatments, that he said made him sick, his disease remained active. Cherrix wanted to go to Mexico to try alternative treatments as a preference to continuing this unsuccessful Western medicine practice.

So when he stopped, Judge Jesse E. Demps filed a temporary order finding his parents neglectful and ordering them and the county social services to share custody of their son. The judge had also forbidden Cherrix and his parents from leaving the state while ordering Abraham to get any diagnostic testing deemed necessary by doctors at Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters in Norfolk.

A judge, according to the article, will allow Cherrix to return to a Mexico clinic to venture forward with his alternative treatment given that Cherrix gets a diagnostic X-Ray first. Cherrix has agreed to this stating that he wil do it because he wants to return to the clinic.

Even a Kid has the Right to not Pursue Traditional Medicine

On the same ABC News article that was presented on television, ABC News interviewed a man who had 11 years free from Hodgkins after successfully undergoing non-traditional medicine practices. This man appreciated Cherrix’s victory. And in a similar case last year, a 13 year old girl with Hodgkin’s Disease won the right to make her own medical decisions but only after a court fight with Texas child care welfare officials. Doctors recommended their favorite course of treatment, chemotherapy and radiation, while her father preferred a program of intravaneous vitamin C. I wonder how Katie’s doing.

In speaking with my friend last night, she has a friend in jail right now, for neglect of her children, with one of the charges that she had been over-medicating her child after the doctor had determined her child to have bowel problems. Apparently taking her child to another doctor and this doctor’s assessment was over-medication and now they’re accusing my friend’s friend of Munchausen by Proxy as well as neglect.

Speaking with my friend right after this ABC News article, it occurs to me, that one can turn left or one can turn right, our United States government, state governments, and local municipalities, can have their hand in your affairs either way insofar as how you medically treat your kids. Apparently, if you don’t treat them with traditional Western Medicine you can be accused of neglect.

Non-medicating, alternative medicating, visual therapy, new-age techniques, feng shui, herbs and vitamins are not traditional ways to treat a condition but I use them. I only resort to Western Medicine when my life is depending on it in immediacy and I hadn’t the knowledge to know what to have tried before it had gotten to that point.

The Superiority of Western Medicine?

Why does our government think it’s so medically infallible and superior as to demand that your child will follow Western Medicine techniques – even at great pain to herself? Because the issue is really what you have to do with your child. As an adult, I can do anything I want to insofar as treating myself for cancer or a cold or bad bowels, but let me be a 7 year old child in the custody of a Jehovah’s Witness and see what happens. I agree that a 7 year old is too young to have the capacity to make her own decisions – maybe. But does our government have the right to undermine parental beliefs, religion, philosophy, or ideas particularly in the fickle realm of cancer or other non-immediate but perhaps life-threatening diseases?

It scares me to think that parents everywhere love and raise their children to the best of their ability and decide once in a while to honor a non-traditional decision from their child and the United States government, or local principalities thereof, swarm in and begin claiming parents as neglectful or worse still, unfit. Or that a parent of a younger child believes an alternative course of therapy may be best and the government comes in to say, “No. You can’t.”

I’m About to Address Fundamental Ideals

It just seems our country has it backwards. Spanking is probably going to be outlawed soon and you have an incorrigible and so you go to jail when she skips school excessively. You weren’t allowed to spank the defiance out of her so here she runs wild and you’re paying for it. She sneaks out at night and cleverly you lock the front door and lock the window she snuck out from, but if a police officer picked her up, you would be the criminal. She decides that with her illness she wants to get proactive and does all this research and so in support of her, you help. You will be dragged into court and accused of being a neglectful parent when your actions were supportive and loving. Nevermind that chemotherapy and/or radiation and/or surgery is never a guarantee.

Dr. Jack KevorkianI am very much a Libertarian and probably the biggest teenage advocate who isn’t paid for by anybody. Personal liberties are inalienable rights and whether it’s my desire to die, live, not operate or operate it is a very scary thought for me to see the government standing at the ready to take them away.

I’m About to Say “Sex”

Yes, we have the supposed right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness or has this government gotten it twisted? I certainly think so. Having these inalienable rights mean I may choose to pursue them; doesn’t mean the government should mandate my pursuance of them. It then gets twisted from a right to an obligation, and at that, as only they see fit. In other words, I have to obligingly pursue my life, liberty, and happiness in accord with the way they want me to. No longer inalienable rights but a twisted version of slavery. I can’t end my life and Jack Kevorkian goes to prison. I can’t determine best course of medicine for myself. I can’t smoke pot and though it would make me happy to engage in unnatural sex acts, the government will reach into my home and put a stop to that also. That’s one way to look at it.

I’m About to Say “Pick my Cotton for Free”

Another way to look at it is that I just can’t have the ability to pursue my life, liberty, or happiness in the deepest sense possible. I want to pursue my life and have the best life possible and with that, I have to have an abortion. Not the most pretty picture but the government said I could pursue my life, and by that I took it to mean that as a sentient and autonomous being, I could pursue more than just oxygen and food. Controversy over that concept remains at large to be sure. If you didn’t like that example as I know it’s prickly for some people, let’s forge onward into the past issue of slavery. IN pursuing my happiness it would make me happy to get a few slaves who would pick my cotton for free.

Women's SuffrageI’m About to Say “Women’s Suffrage” & “Holy Shit”

Nope. Negatory. Wrong. But our government thought this was okay for a long time didn’t it? So…what’s this telling you about our government? Women’s suffrage wasn’t ratified by way of the 19th Amendment until 1919 and in the realm of history, holy shit! And even then, Woodrow Wilson urged it forward as a “war measure” and, although it finally passed, it wasn’t unanimous. More telling of our government’s willy-nilly applied philosophy of the Declaration of Independence’s “inalienable rights.”

Seems they are inalienable only if the government agrees you should have them which of course, eradicates the true definition of inalienable doesn’t it?

In the interest of prognostication I do make a movement toward either the eradication of the Declaration of Independence since the ideas are dwindling quickly and being usurped by any law or statute the wind seems to blow about or a reconsideration of the ideals intended for the pursuance of the application.

I’m About to Quote part of the Declaration of Independence

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. [ Click here to read it in its entirety.]

If Our Creator Gives us Inalienable Rights…

…and our government tries taking them away, does that mean that our government is in opposition to our Creator? I think so. And currently I am very confident that our government is, in many ways, opposing natural law. The Declaration of Independence assures us that it is our Right to alter or abolish that government that becomes destructive to these ends.

I Can’t Change the World

But I can take notice of issues like Abraham Cherrix and his fight to want to treat his disease the way he wants to. I can blog about it and bring attention to it. I can exercise my voice in such a small way as casting a vote or emailing a congressman. I can comment on a blog article I agree or disagree with and express my ideas. I can examine my attitudes, behaviors, and ideas toward laws, statutes, or rules that I have always followed but maybe not knowing why.

I can even choose apathy and watch the world around me fall. “Evil” doesn’t necessarily succeed because people make “bad” decisions. I think evil succeeds when people accept those “bad” decisions because it’s easier than questioning them.


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