“I call heaven and earth to witness against you this day: I have put before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore, choose life, that you and your offspring may live.” —Deuteronomy 30:19
“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.” —Thomas Jefferson, in the Declaration of Independence, stating the American belief that rights are granted by the Creator to all God’s children equally, entitling every individual to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness
Baby Alfie: Commanded to Die by Her Majesty’s Courts
Over the objections of his parents, and with a Vatican-approved military air ambulance on standby to fly Baby Alfie to Bambino Gesu Hospital in Rome, a magistrate of Her Majesty’s Courts blocked all efforts to save Baby Alfie’s life. Doctors overseeing Baby Alfie’s care deemed further medical intervention futile, thereby sentencing the young child to die. Alfie’s parents had fought for months to convince judges to allow their baby the chance at life that was being offered by the Italian government and the Vatican’s children’s hospital, where the maintenance of life support had been promised, while Italian doctors would work on a medical solution that would choose life. According to the Chicago Tribune (http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/ct-british-toddler-alfie-evans-dies-20180428-story.html), “Italy granted Alfie citizenship and put a military plane on standby to transport him to Rome, if the courts allowed it.” Even Pope Francis entered the picture, meeting with Alfie’s father, Thomas Evans, and speaking out on behalf of Baby Alfie, just as he had spoken out for the infant Charlie Gard, whose parents, in 2017, were denied permission to have their baby treated in New York (https://www.cbsnews.com/news/alfie-evans-update-pope-francis-meets-parents-terminally-ill-british-child/).
In the end, England’s socialist medical system—which is not unlike Obamacare (https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(09)60137-9/fulltext) in its socialist philosophy—won the day, and the freedom to choose life lost. The doctors even kicked out Baby Alfie’s priest. RedState reports the following (https://www.redstate.com/brandon_morse/2018/04/27/alfie-evans-priest-reportedly-kicked-hospital-telling-god-watching/): “Not welcome at Alder Hey Hospital is apparently common sense, empathy, and now God. According to Life Site, an Italian newspaper claims that an Italian priest [was] sent to look over baby Alfie Evans, who is currently fighting for his life despite the doctors’ best hopes that he’d have died by now. The priest had been sent to tend to Alfie but, according to Life Site, the priest reminded the staff that their actions against Alfie would be seen by God, and apparently, the hospital staff wasn’t too into that.”
What Role Did Socialist Arrogance Play in Alfie’s Cessation of Care?
According to a news report from The Federalist (http://thefederalist.com/2018/04/26/british-doctor-alfie-evans-must-die-because-his-parents-have-a-bad-attitude/#.WuIxBc-S2l8.twitter), “A British doctor treating Alfie Evans told reporters off the record his parents won’t be allowed to take their child out of the hospital, even to die at home, unless there is a ‘sea change’ in their attitude [of fighting against the hospital in Her Majesty’s Courts]. . . . A report from The Telegraph(https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/04/24/alfie-evans-can-return-home-judge-rules-cant-go-italy-treatment/) indicates the hospital staff is not interested in what’s best for Alfie, so much as proving a point to the parents, who have an ‘attitude’ they don’t like. . . . In sum: The doctors have determined Alfie must die, and he must die in the hospital, unless the parents change their attitude.” This sounds like a parental government scolding children, nothing like the American ideal, expressed by Abraham Lincoln, in his Gettysburg Address, of a nation of the people, by the people, and for the people; indeed, President Lincoln envisions, on behalf of the American people, that a “nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.” This type of freedom-based thinking seems, indeed, to have perished from the thinking of magistrates in England.
The Lucky Case of Stephen Hawking
The Daily Mail (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2380300/Professor-Stephen-Hawkings-illness-forced-marriage-black-hole-despair.html) reported of Dr. Stephen Hawking’s bout with pneumonia, back in 1985, that “Prof Hawking describes how he became so desperately ill with pneumonia while he wrote A Brief History of Time that doctors offered his wife the chance to end his misery and turn off his life-support machine. But Miss Wilde refused to do so and her husband went on to complete the bestselling book which has sold 10 million copies in 40 languages.” Perhaps it was lucky for Hawking that he had fallen ill in Switzerland, and not in England. The Swiss doctors listened to Hawking’s wife and, in accordance with her wishes, kept him alive until they could return him to Cambridge, England, for further treatment. Had Hawking fallen ill in England, would he have been so fortunate? Would Dr. Hawking have died at the age of 43, rather than living to 76, never finishing his book and never making any of the contributions that he ended up making subsequent to 1985? After all, Stephen Hawking had motor neurone disease, which made his case of pneumonia more problematic than most cases. In the end, England’s National Health Service did offer to put Hawking in a nursing home, but, according to the Wikipedia (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Hawking?wprov=sfti1), “his wife Jane was determined that he would live at home. The cost of the care was funded by an American foundation.” So, ultimately, Dr. Hawking’s much-more-expensive home care was paid for by a charitable foundation, from a capitalist country, that wished to guarantee Hawking the right to continue to live and work in his preferred manner. Indeed, Hawking was much luckier than Baby Alfie.
But Did Baby Alfie Really Die on His Own? Or Was He Killed?
When Baby Alfie was taken off life support, he began, miraculously, to breathe on his own. According to Breitbart News (http://www.breitbart.com/london/2018/04/24/claim-baby-alfie-breathing-removed-life-support/), nine hours after having been removed from his respirator, his father reported that Alfie was still breathing on his own without assistance of any kind. Yet, rather than help the baby to continue his fight for life, and possibly survive long enough to be treated in Italy, the doctors conspired along with Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service to proactively end Baby Alfie’s life. CNS News (https://www.cnsnews.com/blog/craig-bannister/nhs-doctor-starving-alfie-evans-death-not-killing-child-its-just-redirecting) has reported that Dr. Ranj Singh argued that withdrawing all life support from Baby Alfie was really just the “redirection of care.” Here is what Dr. Singh said: “This is not the killing of a child—this is redirecting care to make [him] more comfortable.” But this “redirection of care” meant depriving the parents of any right to give the baby water, food, or to take him home to try to care for him on their own. The government-backed doctors had stopped trying altogether. So, what would be the harm? Quite possibly, the harm lay in the fact that the people of England might learn that the government was fallible, that the government was not really God. Tyrannies can never allow individuals the freedom to prove them wrong. Is that the dynamic at work in the case of Baby Alfie? Dr. Singh also called the denial of care to Baby Alfie “the most dignifying life” that government doctors could give him: “Withdrawing life support is not killing someone. It is redirecting care to make them more comfortable and give them the most dignifying life that you can.” So, fighting to survive against all the government doctors’ predictions is not a “dignifying life” for an infant child; only dying, and therefore proving the doctors right, is allowed to be called “dignifying.”
John Kass’s Column on Baby Alfie
John Kass wrote a touching and insightful column on Baby Alfie for the Chicago Tribune (http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/columnists/kass/ct-met-baby-alfie-kass-20180426-story,amp.html). In this piece of heartwarming writing, Kass describes the discussion of Baby Alfie at his dinner table and how the situation in the Liverpool hospital room inhabited by Baby Alfie morphed, in his mind and the mind of his wife Betty, into the hospital room inhabited by Betty upon her giving birth to twins. “I knew she was there in that room,” writes Kass, “on the edge of what could have been the beginning of a vastly different life for us.” For, you see, John and Betty’s twins also had a medical problem that seemed utterly hopeless from the perspective of most medical personnel working in the hospital. After describing difficulties with the birth, Kass tells us there were other problems. “One of the twins wouldn’t eat. He couldn’t keep anything down and the weight just fell off him. The doctors . . . said we were losing the boy. They came up with a Hail Mary play called ‘kangaroo care’: Mom sits in a rocking chair, holding the baby to her breast, skin on skin, in the hopes of stimulating his organs so he’d eat. But Betty was receiving more emergency blood transfusions [due to hemorrhaging from the birth]. She couldn’t rock him. So they put me in that rocking chair. I held my son against my skin. . . . The nurses whisked in and out. The sky grew dark, then pink at the edges, then gray, and dark again. I rocked him for more than 24 hours straight, with my brother Peter coming in to give me a break every 12 hours. What did I talk about with my son on my skin, alone in that room? What life would be like, what he’d do, how he’d run. I promised and begged him and begged God. I bargained and prayed. The next day the boy sipped a thimbleful and kept it down. They told Betty he’d live.”
The series of actions undertaken by the Kass family to save the innocent life of their child would likely have been denied them by English doctors, had they been in Liverpool, England, in 2018. Socialist doctors probably would have seen no sense in attempting a “Hail Mary play” like the one supported by free doctors in a country with a freedom-based, competitive healthcare system like the one utilized by the Kass family—a system which, at the time of the Kass twins’ birth, was based on competition, an American private-sector system that helped ensure that companies provide choice-based care, since the offering of life-choosing services helps to gain and retain customers. Indeed, seemingly Godless government doctors starved Baby Alfie to death, while John and Betty were allowed to try to feed their child, thereby ultimately succeeding in giving their child the gift of life. America is still governed by a God-fearing people, and this is one of the differences between a freedom-loving America and an increasingly totalitarian England. In America, which is a majority-Christian country, the Biblical commandment to “choose life” still holds sway in the minds of most; according to Deuteronomy 30:19, all Jews—and, therefore, all Christians—are called upon to choose life over death whenever possible: “I call heaven and earth to witness against you this day: I have put before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore, choose life, that you and your offspring may live.” This is not the commandment followed by unfree doctors who must choose death, as the obedient functionaries of a socialist system.
John Kass concluded his column by saying, “I don’t know what some judges think when using abstractions of the law to reject another nation’s offer of life while sentencing a child to death. But I do know what some parents think, in those rooms with monitors and tubes, and nurses walking in soft shoes. Parents don’t deal in the abstract. Parents hold their children. They wonder at the miracle of life in their arms. And they pray.” This is the difference between being permitted to exercise God-centered religious values in the home of the free and being forced into accepting the atheistic values of a tyrannical State. In a place like England, where 24.7% of the people claim to hold no religious values (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion_in_England), it is possible for atheists, voting as a bloc, to provide the swing votes needed in order that a socialist party gain power in the Parliament. It was, no doubt, such people—people who do not believe in choosing or defending innocent life—who allowed the English government to disarm the populace back in 1997. And it was the 1997 Gun Ban in England that is often credited with accelerating the tyrannical control of the State in England—a nation that now finds itself bereft of any right to self-defense, any right to free speech, or any right to freely choose the medical care one wishes to use, under the National Health Service. In a nation where only the government has the right to bear arms, the populace is at its mercy and quickly loses all its other rights.
Obama’s Socialism Overcame Religious Freedom by Corrupt Dealing
A 2016 Gallup Poll, as reported in the Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion_in_the_United_States), suggests that 73.7% of Americans are Christians and 2.1% are Jews, which would mean over three-fourths of Americans worship the same Judeo-Christian God of freedom and justice for all. If rightly informed, this majority will reject the irreligious death panels and baby-killing justifications of a totalitarian healthcare system. It must be remembered that Obamacare was passed over the objections of the majority of Americans; indeed, it was the result of President Obama’s wheeling, dealing, and arm-twisting to get Senators and Congressmen to abandon the wishes of constituents in favor of political rewards offered by the president and his administration; Obama’s deals were given such disparaging names as the “Cornhusker Kickback” and the “Louisiana Purchase” (http://www.foxnews.com/story/2010/03/16/deals-for-democrats-health-care-votes.html) to highlight Obama’s unprincipled vote-buying to get his deal passed without the full consent of the governed. This is why so many freedom-loving Americans say that Obamacare was “rammed down the throats of the American people.” According to Brian Darling’s February of 2010 report, in The Daily Signal (https://www.dailysignal.com/2010/02/24/obamacare-and-health-care-nuclear-option-violate-first-principles/), “Americans treasure the idea that our Republic was set up so that the power of the federal government is derived from the consent of the people. The extraordinary state power to pass legislation that puts the government in control of more private health care decisions should only be done with the clear consent of the American people.” It was not. To this day, Obamacare still does not poll well, not even when polled by Democrats, who are notorious at rigging polls and elections in their own favor. The 2016 election polls all indicated a Hillary win, for example, and Donna Brazile has admitted that Hillary rigged her primary against Bernie Sanders with help from the Democratic National Committee (https://www.mrctv.org/blog/donna-brazille-admits-hillarys-takeover-dnc).
Without Justice for All, Does Socialism Provide a Two-Tiered System of Care?
It might be interesting to note that Stephen Hawking was granted nursing home care (which he opted out of, in favor of choosing care provided by an American foundation) back in 1985, before the tyranny of English socialism hit its full stride. Question: Would Dr. Hawking, were he still alive today, be offered a nursing home under similar circumstances to 1985? It is doubtful. And if he were, it would probably only be due to his celebrity status. Does anyone doubt that, if an English royal were ill in the hospital at 23 months of age, that the royal parents of that infant would be allowed to exercise privileges quite different from what was offered to Thomas Evans and Kate James? Would Prince William and Kate Middleton—who just welcomed a yet-to-be-named baby into the world on April 24, 2018, only four days before Baby Alfie died—be told that they could not feed their baby or take it home to try on their own, if their baby had been taken off life support and continued breathing on its own? Would Baby Royal have been starved to death, against the wishes of its royal parents? Probably not. In a state of tyrannical socialism, the people who hold power—the government insiders and elites—are allowed a different kind of justice, rather than the Equal Protection of the laws that America’s Constitution was written to ensure. Equal Protection does not mean forcing the royal family to let its baby die; it means allowing the Evans family—by right!—the same privileges held by the rich and powerful.
Americans Must Exercise Caution, Lest Healthcare Freedom Be Forever Lost in America
This issue of socialism in England’s healthcare is important to Americans, because England’s National Health Service is philosophically similar to Obamacare, the first piece of major legislation in American history to be passed solely by the votes of one political party—America’s socialist Democrat Party. Americans have been luckier than the English, because, upon the heels of the taking effect of Obamacare, a Republican majority was elected, not only to the House, but to the US Senate as well. Although many of these people have their own problems as overseers of the American republic, choosing death over life is not generally one of them. The American people have been spared, thus far, the harsher consequences of Obamacare.
But the Democrat media campaign of accusations and lying against Republicans continues. And the midterm elections will be important. Although the individual mandate has been canceled by law under Trump’s pro-life presidency, allowing Americans to buy other insurance on the free market if they so desire, the entire Obamacare juggernaut has yet to be canceled in toto. And the Democrats’ godless vision of healthcare for America is not far different from that of England’s National Health Service, a government-run system that denies that parents should have the right to speak for their child until the child reaches adulthood. In a collectivist system opposed to individual rights, such as the system proposed by the Democrats, it is the State that holds that right—the same state that has worked so hard to turn rights into privileges in recent years. Remember that it was the Democrats who sought to pass the Udall Amendment to the Constitution, to subject Americans’ free speech rights to government regulation (http://eaglerising.com/9516/will-obama-democrats-repeal-first-amendment/); the Democrats who have tried to ensure a collectivist police state in America by taking away the right of every individual to own firearms (http://eaglerising.com/57297/totalitarian-liberals-use-children-to-enable-victim-disarmament/); the Democrats who have instituted death panels—called Independent Payment Advisory Boards (or IPABs)—under Obamacare, to cancel the rights of patients to choose certain options for their own care (http://www.wnd.com/2018/02/obamacare-death-panel-now-gone/).
In England, we now know, the same State that would surely allow royals the privilege to choose life has no qualms about denying the same privilege to commoners with no political connections. America is no different, with regard to how socialism would work, once its Godless principles were to take over. In socialism, no one has the right to be free from the dictates of the collective. Individuals who express themselves freely are demonized as selfish, and those who believe in God are vilified, smeared, and bullied. It is what Democrats are doing in America today. And their healthcare programs must never again be given absolute sanction, lest the situation with Baby Alfie recur repeatedly, not only in England, but in America as well! America is a free republic, but it will only remain so, to paraphrase Ben Franklin, if we can keep it. For the sake of all the future Baby Alfies, I pray that we can.
The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com