Court Overrules Parents in Religious Refusal of Chemotherapy for 13-Year-Old Boy

thumb_praying_handsMinnesota Judge John Rodenberg has ruled in the case of Daniel Hauser, 13. We discussed this case earlier regarding the religious objections that the parents raised to chemotherapy for Daniel’s cancer –even though he has a 90 percent chance of survival with the treatment and little or no change of survival without it.

Daniel has Hodgkin’s lymphoma, which is now considered a highly treatable form of cancer. In his
58-page ruling, Rodenberg found that Daniel has been “medically neglected” and is in need of child protection services. He wrote ” “Brown County (Minnesota) Family services has demonstrated a compelling state interest in the life and welfare of Daniel Hauser sufficient to override the fundamental constitutional rights of both parents and Daniel to the free exercise of religion and the due process right of the parents to direct the religious and other upbringing of the child.”

Daniel opposed the treatment and his court-appointed criticized the ruling, saying
“It marginalizes the decisions that parents face every day in regard to their children’s medical care. It really affirms the role that big government is better at making our decisions for us.”

For the full story, click here and here.

59 thoughts on “Court Overrules Parents in Religious Refusal of Chemotherapy for 13-Year-Old Boy”

  1. FF LEO,

    I thought we should have a Troll Judge us as we know they would slap us all down for disagreeing with them.

  2. Mike Spindell,

    I said that in you are very eloquent with your words. I usually read this on my phone as it is easier to keep up. I would look goofier than I already am if I tried to carry my laptop and read at the same time.

    I have been told by many that I remind them of the absent minded professor. No racial slur intended but I can drive slower than an Asian when I am in deep thought.

    I appreciate the words of wisdom that you espouse and relish your good naturedness on the trolls. Suffer as they must. I appreciate your words of encouragement as well as everyone else’s.

  3. Buddha,

    That is why I have a qualm with that. You know my situation and frankly I would hate like hell to have to make that choice. But if I had to make that choice this would be a perplexing as pulling the plug or quantity of life or for that fact abortion. I say that this is a personal choice and the state should not be involved. So say that the treatment is unsuccessful then is it quantity of life?

    A side note, my parents were in the medical center in Houston as a child they were given an apartment in a hotel. MD Anderson leased space for the children and parents to live at while they were going through an invasive procedure. I remember many a night hearing the groans of children. It had quite an effect on me at the time and it still does. To see children with there head shaved and purple marks on them. I am thankful I an not in that position to have to make that choice. I am tearing as I write this as I can only imagine the hell that these kids went through and the parents.

    This is why I said I just don’t know.

  4. AY,

    I can’t answer for Siddhartha, this Buddha would do the following:

    I would explain all the relevant factors to the child and then ask him if he wants to live (get treatment) or die (refuse treatment).

    It’s his life, not his parents (no matter even if they still retain responsibility for his actions as a minor). This is a life and death issue. HIS life or death. The child is a minor but of age to understand that death is forever. Your life, what you have when you lay down at night on your immediate person and what you wake with, is all one has in this world. The rest is just illusion – including one’s religion of choice. Basic existence is the most very fundamental of human rights. The child, as a successful living being outside the womb, has every right to exist that you or I have. To deprive him of that right without his choice (or at least substantial input) strikes me as manifestly unjust.

  5. There is a hierarchy of constitutional rights here at issue, plus the legal recognition of competancy.

    The State’s obligation to protect life and property from others supercede others’ rights to practice their religion.
    Thus if a person’s religious beliefs mandate they take a life, or destroy another’s property, then the law’s allegience is to the life or property first, not protection of the religious practice.

    In this case, the legal guardians of a person who is not considered legally competant, are making decisions for that person; those decisions are religiously motivated and (arguably) will result in an objectively life threatening circumstance.

    The law’s precedence is thus: The incompetant’s (non)desire for medical treatment is advisory but not dispositive, the legal guardians’ religiously based desire to withhold medical treatment for their ward is ordinarily mandatory, except to the extent that that desire will objectively result in loss of life or irreparable significant harm.

    So, much like in any child abuse analysis, the state leaves treatment of wards in matters of religion alone – unless those religious decisions will harm the ward. If harm will come from that treatment, then the state says prevention of harm supercedes religious rights.

  6. Hey Former Dem.

    You are forgiven. Sin No more. Go, your faith has sent you free.

  7. JEN, I guess you MISSED the third to the last paragraph:

    “As you probably noticed, the values predicting private charity in America tend to smile on the political right. Conservatives are twice as likely as liberals to attend a house of worship regularly; conservatives are one third as likely as liberals to say the government should “do more” to reduce income inequality; conservatives also have about 40 percent more children than liberals. Furthermore, there is a fringe on today’s political left that goes beyond simple neglect of charity, and openly condemns it, claiming that it lets governments off the hook from having to pay for services. So while there may be nothing inherently charitable about political conservatism, today’s conservatives do outperform liberals on most measures of private giving.”

    The bottom line is all you have to do is google conservative charitable rates and you will find plenty of evidence that yes indeed Conservatives donate to charity far in excess of liberals, both in terms of dollars and % of income and/or assets.

  8. jen, ya, better to get rid of the babies in the womb than to expect them to fend for themselves as adults and their mothers and fathers to raise them as a normal family unit until they are of age…..


  9. Ah, but stupidity is the folly of the followers.

    Mespo72Cubed, Mike Spindell and others you are my champs. Independence is rampant on this list/blawg. I truly appreciate this. Now if you could only enlist the unenlistable.

    I wonder what Buddha would do?

    For my two cents. If this was a belief that I truly held, would I want government intrusion in my life? If I thought that I was doing what I honestly believed and I was sober and capable of making a decision like this, would I want this type of intrusion. No.

    Do I think that government is making correct decision here? I am not sure. Would I want government to tell me what is the proper belief I believe? NO.

    Do I think that if my family had not converted because it was not popular, did they do the right thing? I don’t know. Can I be partly Christian or Jewish? Does it matter? There was a time that you were persecuted because you were Jewish or people would not deal with you, or sell you a house.

    I do not say this lightly, but I have lost a child. This by his own choice. Am I upset with my exwife? No.

    Did she say that she would turn the children against me, if we ever got divorced? Yes. Was I angry at the time for some of the things she did? Yes.

    Have I forgiven her? Yes. Does she have to live in her own hell today? I do not know. Do I forgive her? Today I can.

    That is all.

  10. Former Dem

    Your link you provided indicated nothing about conservatives donating 50% more then non-conservatives.

    Here are a few passages directly from the link you provided.

    working poor give away at least as large a percentage of their incomes as the rich, and a lot more than the middle class. The charity gap is driven not by economics but by values.

    It also says in your link people of faaith give away 50% more then people of no faith. It says nothing in your link about conservatives giving more.

    You also failed to mention that when conservatives donate they donate to musems and other places of entertainment. They also donate a large percentage to ivy leauge schools where they expect their children to go. I think in fact over 70% of all donations by conservatives are to the higher end colleges and universites they attended or want their children to attend.
    Their donations to the needy are a very small percentage of what high income earners do donate.

    It is true conservatives only care about children before they are born.
    They make a big stink about forcing teenage moms to have babies and meanwhile when the teenage moms do have babies and when the poor people on welfaredo have babies the conservatives sit back and complain how the 3 and 4 year old kids of teenage mothers and welfare parents will grow up to be scum like their parents generation after generion.

  11. Larry:

    I hope JT takes you up on that. I think a face lift for the homepage would be great!!!

  12. Mr. Turley, I can make you a really cool header with a logo on it for the top of your page (absolutely free) if youd like. Contact me at LMR892@MYACTV.NET


  13. Bron, if you are not aware of the fact that survey after survey shows conservatives donate the most to charity, I guess you aren’t as informed as you think you are.

    Here is just one. The General Social Survey shows that people who oppose government income redistribution donate four times as much money each year as do redistribution supporters.

    It appears you are nowhere near as informed as you believe you are and that makes you a typical Obama voter.

  14. Biden Reveals Classified Information?

    According to an account in Newsweek, Biden gave up one of the country’s secrets at another dinner where journalists and politicians make fun of Republicans (and occasionally laugh at each other).

    Biden told his dinnermates about the existence of a secret bunker under the Vice President’s Residence at the U.S. Naval Observatory. leanor Clift writes:

    Ever wonder about that secure, undisclosed location where Dick Cheney secreted himself after the 9/11 attacks? Joe Biden reveals the bunker-like room is at the Naval Observatory in Washington, where Cheney lived for eight years and which is now home to Biden. The veep related the story to his head-table dinner mates when he filled in for President Obama at the Gridiron Club earlier this year. He said the young naval officer giving him a tour of the residence showed him the hideaway, which is behind a massive steel door secured by an elaborate lock with a narrow connecting hallway lined with shelves filled with communications equipment. The officer explained that when Cheney was in lock down, this was where his most trusted aides were stationed, an image that Biden conveyed in a way that suggested we shouldn’t be surprised that the policies that emerged were off the wall.

    This facility and it’s existence was highly classified.

    So what was Joe Biden doing talking about it at the Gridiron Dinner and will this disclosure be referred to the Justice Department?

  15. fORMER DEM:

    DO you have statistics to back up the claim about money donated to private charities? If so please provide them.

  16. “Moscow police violently break up gay pride rally…”

    I think Hillary hit the wrong “restart” button again…

    Americans are starting to notice Russia was better to their citizens when Bush was breathing down Russian’s back than now when Obama is shaking hands with thug dictators and Hillary is giggling about how wonderful everybody is.

  17. Spindal writes: “What’s funny to me is how the anti-abortion movement doesn’t care for babies after they are born and consistently votes for a party that also doesn’t care for babies or people after birth.”

    What an OLD canard. Conservatives are the ones raising the kids, (proven as) the largest donaters money to charity, the ones willing to secure the nation, the ones supporting one man one woman marriage and normal households, and allowing all to be as great as they personally can without having to support the 50% that want to live off other’s labor.

    Go pound it.

  18. Matthew,

    I’ve often wondered about that as well. Isn’t prayer an intervention? Prayer’s intention is to make the person well. So why not an intervention through the knowledge that god put into the heads of men? Why allow only one form of intervention to god? I’m not religious either, but this behavior doesn’t make sense on it’s own terms. Like others here, I can’t imagine letting a child die.

  19. The judge made the right decision and ironically may have spared these parents the lifetime of heartbreak they would have had, when they came to realized that they killed their own son, through their own ignorance.

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