The absolutely crazy things that believers believe
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27-04-2017, 05:22 PM (This post was last modified: 27-04-2017 05:27 PM by Rachel.)
The absolutely crazy things that believers believe
Is this what passes for religious freedom these days? It's not enough to permit hate against Muslims, homosexuals, and pretty much everyone who isn't a lunatic Christian fundy, now parents have the right to let their kids die?

"Idaho lawmakers stand up again for the religious right of parents to let their children die"

By Shawn Vestal
shawnv@spokesman.com

How many dead children per year is the going price for religious freedom?

One? Three? Seven?

In Idaho, it’s 2 1/2, and a lot of lawmakers seem to consider it a good deal. That’s based on the 10 children in Idaho who died between 2013 and 2016, according to the Idaho Child Death Review Team. It’s likely the deaths are undercounted. “It is difficult to estimate the actual number of preventable deaths to children of religious objectors,” the team dryly noted.

Since 2012, the team has tried – in the face of limitations including a reluctance to cooperate by some individuals and agencies – to track how many kids die in the Gem State because their parents believe modern medicine is evil. The number is particularly important given the reluctance of the Idaho Legislature to do anything about it, deferring instead to the right of a parent to cause their own child’s death, as long as they do so religiously.

Idaho’s religiously free parents have allowed infants to die of meconium aspiration, intestinal blockages and infections, among other causes. The team “determined that each of these deaths may have been prevented with proper and timely medical treatment.” Many of the deaths are associated with a religious group near Boise that believes medical care is evil; so far this year, three children have died in that community, known as the Followers of Christ, according to news reports.

What do you call parents like these? Most states would call them criminals. Idaho lawmakers call them deeply, sincerely religious. Year after year, Idaho lawmakers reject proposals to take down the state’s protections for parents who religiously let their kids die of sepsis, or failure to treat diabetes, or any other treatable ailment.

Those religious beliefs are deep indeed. Six feet deep.

“It’s an atrocity,” Canyon County Sheriff Kieran Donahue told the Los Angeles Times recently. “If it was cattle being treated like this, no medical care, in distress, if you saw that from the street, we’d have a search warrant and we’d be kicking down doors.”

Donahue has been investigating child deaths among the Followers of Christ for years, and is pressing the state to change its law, investigate the deaths more thoroughly, and hold adults criminally liable when they let kids die needlessly.

The state, via the Legislature, keeps declining to do so. In the recently concluded session, a bill failed that tried to strike a weaselly middle ground between protecting kids from dying and protecting parents who religiously let them die.

In the course of arguing over this legislation, lawmaker after lawmaker acted stunningly oblivious and cruel, boasting about their own religious bona fides to justify their failure to protect the state’s children from zealots. They seemed to view allowing a child to die as an exercise of freedom akin to refusing to bake a gay wedding cake – just something a believer’s gotta do.

Sen. Chuck Winder, a Boise Republican, said, “Christ healed a blind man with spittle and dirt. Was that what healed him? It was because of faith.”

Senate Majority Leader Bart Davis said, “I believe in the power of prayer. I believe the Lord God Almighty can be involved. I believe he has, and will heal people.”

Sen. Brent Hill said, “Most of us believe God can intervene. We pray.”

These dead children lacked faith, spittle and dirt.

The collective shrugging of Idaho’s lawmakers on this question, year after year, exceeds the disgusting. It is backward and destructive. Whatever you want to say about an individual’s rights to their beliefs, Idaho is treating children – who have no say about the crackpot beliefs their parents may hold – as property whose lives are less valuable than animals, so long as their abuser quotes the Bible.

Last year, when a proposal to lift the religious shield died in committee, Sen. Lee Heider stuck up for the Followers of Christ as “very nice people” in an interview with the Guardian newspaper.

“Republicans didn’t feel the need to change the laws,” he said. “We believe in the First Amendment to the Constitution. I don’t think that states have a right to interfere in religions.”

He added, “Are we going to stop Methodists from reading the New Testament? Are we going to stop Catholics receiving the sacraments? That’s what these people believe in. They spoke to me and pointed to a tremendous number of examples where Christ healed people in the New Testament.”

Yes, letting your infant choke to death on meconium is a lot like receiving the sacrament.

State Rep. Christie Perry, R-Nampa, looked at it from the parents’ point of view.

“They are comforted by the fact that they know their child is in heaven,” Perry said. “If I want to let my child be with God, why is that wrong?”

Is that the stupidest thing an Idaho lawmaker has said about these kids, who have been failed so atrociously by their parents and their state? It might be, but there are a lot of contenders.

Consider Terreton’s Jeff Siddoway, who reminded everyone this year that those dead kids really are quite fortunate, in the grand scheme of things.

“Those children that have gone on … they have it made.”

If only all children could be so lucky.

http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2017/ap...in-for-th/
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27-04-2017, 06:55 PM
RE: The absolutely crazy things that believers believe
WOW!

Rachel Wrote:“It’s an atrocity,” Canyon County Sheriff Kieran Donahue told the Los Angeles Times recently. “If it was cattle being treated like this, no medical care, in distress, if you saw that from the street, we’d have a search warrant and we’d be kicking down doors.”

Donahue has been investigating child deaths among the Followers of Christ for years, and is pressing the state to change its law, investigate the deaths more thoroughly, and hold adults criminally liable when they let kids die needlessly.

I am glad I voted for this Sheriff twice.

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01-05-2017, 07:56 PM
RE: The absolutely crazy things that believers believe
In Oregon it took nearly 30 years and more than 80 child deaths before the legislature finally removed the "religious exemption" law that allowed parents to let their kids die if they thought their religion forbade modern medical treatment.

And even then, it only happened because an evangelical legislator decided that the evidence was so overwhelming, and the situation so appalling, that he jumped on the bandwagon to change the law. There are still people here fighting to change it back.

In Idaho it's even worse. There are some pretty remote places up in the pan handle where you've got everything from radical survivalists to Aryan Nations types, not to mention multiple flavors of religious nut living in the boonies.

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01-05-2017, 09:11 PM
RE: The absolutely crazy things that believers believe
As a mom, I truly cannot imagine anything worse than watching my own child suffer and die.

This just hurts my heart Sad

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01-05-2017, 09:58 PM
RE: The absolutely crazy things that believers believe
We've had a few tragic deaths of this sort in Canada over the last few years, mostly in the name of "alternative" medicine practiced by morons. Happily, our judiciary has little compunction when it comes to making an example of half-wits that kill their kids with stupidity. Charges of first degree murder were laid in a recent and truly horrific case.

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02-05-2017, 12:15 AM
RE: The absolutely crazy things that believers believe
(01-05-2017 09:58 PM)Paleophyte Wrote:  We've had a few tragic deaths of this sort in Canada over the last few years, mostly in the name of "alternative" medicine practiced by morons. Happily, our judiciary has little compunction when it comes to making an example of half-wits that kill their kids with stupidity. Charges of first degree murder were laid in a recent and truly horrific case.

This is why alternative medicine is horseshit, and it's practitioners should be forced to prove it works or to fuck off.

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(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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02-05-2017, 01:21 AM (This post was last modified: 02-05-2017 01:25 AM by Robvalue.)
RE: The absolutely crazy things that believers believe
What exactly makes something a religious belief and therefor a sacred and legal way of letting your child die?

"I don't want my child to be treated. That's my religion."

"I don't want my child to be treated because I don't like hospitals. That's my religion."

"I don't want my child to be treated because my microwave says so. That's my religion."

"I don't want my child to be treated because a zombie Jew talks to me, and tells me to leave things in his hands. That's my religion."

How many of these are okay? Bullshit. Effectively murdering your child through neglect should not be allowed. Secular law must trump religious beliefs. What's next, having a religious belief about raping your child?

I have a website here which discusses the issues and terminology surrounding religion and atheism. It's hopefully user friendly to all.
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02-05-2017, 09:21 AM
RE: The absolutely crazy things that believers believe
I honestly don't understand why belief is treated with such reverence and why we're supposed to respect it so much. Belief in a magical, invisible being that cannot be proven in the slightest is not something that should be celebrated; it should be treated with pity.

I will respect that you have the right to believe whatever you want, but I in no way respect your beliefs, nor do I have to.
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02-05-2017, 09:33 AM
RE: The absolutely crazy things that believers believe
I agree. Beliefs are bullshit. If your beliefs are stupid, I'll call them stupid.

I respect your right to believe what you want (I won't kidnap and brainwash you) but if your actions become harmful or illegal then I don't give a crap what magical genie you think is involved. You need to be stopped.

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02-05-2017, 09:37 AM
RE: The absolutely crazy things that believers believe
(01-05-2017 07:56 PM)Dr H Wrote:  In Oregon it took nearly 30 years and more than 80 child deaths before the legislature finally removed the "religious exemption" law that allowed parents to let their kids die if they thought their religion forbade modern medical treatment.

And even then, it only happened because an evangelical legislator decided that the evidence was so overwhelming, and the situation so appalling, that he jumped on the bandwagon to change the law. There are still people here fighting to change it back.
This is based on conservative politic's disordered thinking around the term "liberty". Liberty, as defined by libertarians and tea party types, has become so sacred that it trumps everything, including child welfare. It is not a question of preventing harms or regulating to prevent abuse; it is a question of not limiting personal freedoms, regardless of the cost to anyone (other than, perhaps those in power).

One fundamental problem with this, is that what is sacrosanct is the liberty of certain people over others: adults over children, in this case, but also, men over women, whites over people of color, heterosexuals over non-heterosexuals, sometimes even WASPs over non-WASPs. No one is foaming at the mouth or showing the whites of their eyes over the liberty being taken from minors, or women, or the impoverished, of minorities or the disadvantaged. It's all about the rights and freedoms of the predominant class. In fact, it's ultimately, though many of them don't realize it, about the rights of the rich elites, who simply fool the middle class elites who aspire to being rich, and sometimes the poor who aspire to be middle class, to go along with it. It is about the top 1% at the end of the day.
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