Two parents will lose their beloved 10-month-old son to what could arguably deemed State execution — so avoidably vile, the imminent killing, Charles Dickens undoubtedly rolls in his grave.
Charlie Gard — ruled the (unironically named) European Court of Human Rights in determining the last appeal by his parents, Chris Gard and Connie Yates, “inadmissible” — will not be permitted transport to the United States to undergo experimental nucleoside bypass therapy to treat a rare disease, of which the infant’s is only the sixteenth recorded case.
Instead, medical staff at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children in London will shut off Charlie’s life support — death with dignity, apparently, as doctors surmise the baby must be suffering horribly to be kept alive, while off ventilator, palliative care would be viable.
Gard and Yates were “utterly distraught” about today’s ruling — and for good reason.
Charlie will die.
What this amounts to, say the parents and their attorneys, among others, is cold-blooded murder — since perhaps the lone shred of hope for Charlie lies just across the pond, in the U.S.
Suffering brain and muscle damage common to mitochondrial DNA depletion syndrome, inherited only when both parents carry the rare gene, Charlie Gard took the spotlight as his case puts State power versus parental rights on shameful display for the planet — particularly as extenuating circumstances seemingly should mitigate strictures in government books.
“Indeed,” The Daily Sheeple previously reported, “the case of little Charlie Gard might be the penultimate example of the Nanny State gone grievously awry — provoking delicate esoteric questions on the balance between governmental protections and the right to self-determination, with the additional complications of parental rights and consent.
“In fact — given that pilot treatment could be had with the necessary funds and a trip overseas — to align with the court in this case, would be to affirm the State has ultimate power over life when it becomes a troublesome burden.”
Gard and Yates have, in fact, raised nearly £1.4million (roughly $1.82 million) through crowdsourcing from more than 83,000 people — believed to be enough to fund air hospital transport and the experimental therapy — but even that did not mollify the human rights court’s concerns Charlie “die with dignity,” as it was ruled therapy “would be of no effective benefit.”
Negating that argument all along, neither parent has ever championed nucleoside bypass therapy as a cure-all or miracle treatment for the condition; rather, simply that therapy could prolong and vastly improve quality of life for Charlie.
“We have had our parental rights stripped away as if they don’t matter at all,” Yates railed after the last ruling by the British High Court. “The way we have been treated by doctors at Great Ormond Street Hospital has been inhuman. Our son is basically being kept as a prisoner at the hospital.”
“This case is different from others because the parents have found a reputable alternative hospital that is prepared to provide treatment,” Charlie da Silva, a barrister for the family, noted prior to the hearing, for which the ECHR ruled in favor on appeal. “If a hospital is not prepared to carry out a particular treatment then it should not be able to prevent another hospital which is ready, willing and able to provide the treatment from doing so.”
“Unless their decision will cause or is likely to cause significant harm to their child, parents should be the final decision makers,” da Silva continued. “However, as the law [in the U.K.] currently stands as soon as a child is admitted to a hospital the parents immediately lose their parental responsibility.
“The doctors become the final decision makers on what is in the best interests of the child. The doctors decide what treatment the child should or should not have and in the final analysis whether the child lives or dies.”
For readers in the U.S. and elsewhere, outside the U.K., that warrants bold emphasis.
Parents in the U.K. whose children enter the hospital in circumstances like Charlie’s are bereft of control in determining their child’s care when medical personnel find a certain course of treatment — or, in this case, termination of certain care — would be in the better interest of the child.
Whether or not Charlie experiences severe pain seems to be a matter of some debate, but Gard and Yates wish only for the chance to see their son improve. Because the parents have obtained funding for every step were the infant to be released, this case dramatically departs from any argument of burdens on the system — plainly, the courts and State insist acting with Charlie’s welfare in mind, while hypocritically stonewalling an albeit fringe treatment simply because it proffers no guarantees.
“There’s a hospital ready and waiting,” lamented supporter of the family, Michelle Standen, outside the court in Westminster during a previous proceeding. “It’s disgusting. Why not allow him to go? The funds are there. He’s not in pain. All the time they have been doing the court cases, they could have been treating him.”
Gard, Yates, and innumerable supporters had remained confident the ECHR would prevent life support for the tiny child from being halted, but Thursday’s decision was the last barrier to his inevitable demise.
“That cannot possibly be right,” da Silva opined upon the British court’s decision earlier this month. “It strikes at the core and offends the very essence of parenthood.”
Unfortunately, the case of Charlie Gard intimately highlights the folly of coddled society’s ardor to sign away right after right to the Nanny State — whether due to fear, a quest for security, or protection from whatever evil government currently targets — rather than champion personal responsibility.
Indeed the British law responsible for this nightmarish dystopian Hell likely made the books in the interest of protecting children from irresponsible, negligent, or uninformed parents — but the authors could not have foreseen this authoritarian interpretation, or imagined it would sign an infant’s death warrant.
Charlie’s shocked and traumatized parents will now be left to wonder for time immemorial whether an albeit difficult journey to America might have saved or sustained his life, and blessed them with additional months together.
If this case follows the law, the rules, the guidelines, policy, then we — even those of us outside the U.K. — would be well-advised to examine our priorities as a species, lest we dismiss, entirely, our humanity for the sake of ill-begotten legislation.