by Matt Agorist, The Free Thought Project:
Alberta, CA — Should the parents of a child who sought out a homeopathic treatment instead of traditional medicine for their son’s illness be punished if that treatment fails? An Alberta court says, ‘yes.’
Judge Rodney Jerke sentenced David Stephan to prison this week and his wife Collet Stephan to three months of house arrest. The couple was found ‘guilty’ earlier this year of failing to provide the necessaries of life to their 19-month-old son, Ezekiel, who contracted meningitis in 2012.
According to court documents, when their son became ill, the Stephans tried to treat Ezekiel with natural remedies of hot peppers, garlic, onions, and horseradish. Not until Ezekiel stopped breathing did the Stephans seek out traditional medical help by dialing 9-1-1.
The judge in the Stephans’ case called the couple “willfully blind” and blamed them for their son’s death.
“You have affected many people … your conduct has left an unerasable and chilling impact on all of us,” Jerke told the couple. “This case was about whether parents, who failed to take a sick boy to a doctor, should be held criminally responsible. The trial was not about vaccination. This is far beyond a child who simply has the sniffles.”
The judge said he acknowledged the fact that the parents loved and cared for their son, but called their alternative treatment a failure.
“Mr. Stephan’s post-conviction actions demonstrate a complete lack of remorse,” the judge said. “To this day he refuses to admit his actions had any impact.”
While many may agree with the judge’s feelings on this matter, it is important to remain objective. Did these parents willfully ignore their son’s sickness and do nothing to stop it? The truth is no; they did not.
Only because the treatment, however ill-advised, failed, did the parents receive any attention. The troublesome aspect about this ruling and subsequent sentencing is had Ezekiel died from meningitis while undergoing care from traditional medical doctors, he would have never received attention from law enforcement. Also, the couple would have been given sympathy and remorse from the community instead of hate and contempt.
However, because Ezekiel died while his parents sought out homeopathic remedies — this now becomes criminal, in spite of the fact that they never neglected him.
Please follow SGT Report on Twitter & help share the message.