Should religious parents be charged with murder if their ill child dies due to a refusal to seek treatment?

Asked by: thenappet
  • Yes they should

    A child should deserve to live, no matter what. If treatment is available to them and they can afford it, they should get it no matter what. I'm a Catholic, and this type of thing goes completely against my beliefs. I believe that everyone should deserve to live, especially an innocent child.

  • Yes, a child is not a possession.

    An adult can make a choice for him or herself to take advantage of medical treatment or not to. But a child is not a possession and their life must be saved if at all possible. We can not inflict our will that much on a child's right to get treatment.

  • A conditional yes.

    I do have to agree with Bruinshockeyfan that it should not be first degree murder. I normally believe in the separation of church and state and the need for religious tolerance except when the exercising of one's beliefs causes harm to another. A parent's refusal to seek any treatment for an obviously ill child would be an issue of neglect. The instance of a parent refusing to allow a child with a dangerously high fever to have Tylenol or any other meds seems obviously wrong. However, a parent refusing chemo for their child if the treatment has a low survival rate and a high degree of pain and suffering is a much greyer area.

  • Making a choice to deny life saving treatment is murder

    If a parent denies a child life saving treatment, then in effect they are terminating that child's life. By any law standard terminating someones life with fore knowledge is per-meditated murder and so they should get charged. Prayer has been shown to not work in scientific studies, so there is no reason to accept prayer over medical treatment. These parents that allow this to happen are disgusting and delusional, they deserve to be on heavy anti-psychotic meds and in an institution.

  • But not only religious parents

    Anyone who denies their sons or daughters their right to a treatment or cure that has been proven effective is denying them a chance to live. Belief is a sad thing when it leads to unnecesary deaths. Parents are responsible for keeping their children alive and failure to do so is equivalent to negligence.

  • Of course! It doesn't take a lawyer to know that this is the case.

    The freedoms that protect the citizens of the United States are valid if and only if those freedoms are not used to violate another persons freedoms. Therefore, in the case of a religious family allowing a child to die because their god (or gods) will help the child, while a family is allowed to believe in such god(s), their decision to allow the child to die infringes on the child's right to live, and is therefore murder.

  • Parents are supposed to look out for the best interest of their child

    If the parent assumes that it was "god's will" for their child to be ill, and that they must "return to god". When the parent acknowledges that the child will die as a result of a lack of intervention/treatment, then yes that is murder.
    Then there are cases where the treatment is forbidden by the religion (for example a blood transfusion) And in that case, I still think the parent should be held liable. But fortunately, the courts do sometimes intervene, like in the case of an Amish girl who had an 85% chance of surviving cancer with chemo, but the parents wanted to use "natural" remedies, which could have resulting in the girl only surviving for a year. Well the court ruled that the parents didn't have jurisdiction and the girl was allowed to finish her treatments.

  • Why Is This Even A Discussion. YES!

    It is murder. That parent should burn in hell for all of eternity. I do not know what my religion is, but I know, no matter how religious I will be, I will never hurt my children because of my beliefs and practices. My children come first, and everything else is after.

  • Kind of agree

    I think that the parents should be prosecuted but not charged with murder. They should never be allowed to have children again because they don't respect the health of their child. Saying that, part of me believes they should be charged with murder but then again everything in the world comes down to religion to a degree. Humans evolve and so does medical care; only those living in the real world will understand that not those who live on really old traditions. (Not having a dig at religion)

  • Your child shouldn't have to die for your ignorance.

    It is a parent's responsibility to ensure that a child is safe and well (health wise, in this case). If you refuse to seek treatment for your sick child, you are refusing to keep your child healthy. You are imposing harm on your child because of your lack of education. Belief should not have to blind fact. It is known through science and common sense that your child will/may die if he falls ill and his immune system is unable to fight the disease. Be it a natural remedy or a doctor, seek treatment! There is no proven fact that praying to God can help cure your child. HOWEVER, if this person truly has no knowledge (very illiterate or suffering from mental conditions that inhibits cognitive functions) that the child may die then he is unable to make a decision due to insufficient information. In that case, I don't believe the parent is doing harm as the parent does not know and is therefore not murder.

  • I see no reason why

    I find "Christian Science" rather abhorrent and absurd, and would argue against it on both religious and secular grounds. But the 1st amendment protects free exercise of religion, and decisions about health and well-being are the purview of the parents or legal guardians. This is not a matter for state interference. And I certainly won't be lectured otherwise by people who would do nothing if the same parents aborted the same child in the womb.

  • That is not murder

    Refusal to seek medical treatment for a problem is a totally legal way to die. You can not force a person to accept medical treatment. So you can not charge anyone for murder if that is the cause of death. There are 5 legal forms of euthanasia and this is one of them.

  • They should not

    Let's try to dive into the mind of a religious person. I know it might be hard, so let's make an analogy.

    Let's say you have a child and he gets sick, in fact it's so bad that he's probably going to die.
    You live in a society that believes striking the child with lightning cures all illnesses, and everyone recommends this treatment. You of course know (believe to know) that the death rate for lightning strikes in 40%, and naturally don't want to submit your child to such treatment.

    Your child dies, even though you did everything you (believed) you could to save it, and now the society wants to charge you with MURDER for not submitting to your treatment.

    Doesn't that sound ridiculous? Well, that's exactly how it sounds to a person who refuses western medical knowledge based on personal belief.

    Now, let's see:
    Did you want your child dead? -No
    Did you know that your child was going to die under his treatment? -No, because you were convinced that your child was getting the best care and would live.

    I don't think that really qualifies as murder.
    Besides, such a law could be used in an extremely oppressive way by the government.

    "Oh, you don't want your child to be treated with daily small-dose cyanide injections? You MURDERER!"

    I know most people come up with these laws to try and save laws, but think instead about how such a law could be used AGAINST you, because you sure as hell can bet on the government to do just that.

  • They should not.

    Many people refuse to seek treatment for their illnesses and injuries for many reasons not religious. To not seek treatment due to a religious reason would be no different. And who is to say that the treatment would even work? People have the right to listen to their religion about what to do.

  • We All Have Free Agency

    See, everyone has this thing called free agency. It makes it so that we are held accountable for our decisions, not others decisions. So if the child wishes to not seek medical treatment, then that is the child's choice to make. The parents cannot (should not) force their will upon their children. They need to let them decide for themselves. Therefore, the parent should not be charged with murder. This is a silly topic to talk about.

  • It's not right

    Religous parents should have the right to do whatever they want with their children. How do you know whatever religious practices that the parents are doing arnt real, you don't. What if there is a parent who doesn't believe in giving their children medicine/drugs, then do they get arrested if their child dies? I think a lot of this is just ignorant people against religion. And religion is in the context of any religion not just Islam Christianity etc. For all of you biased people.

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