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  #1  
Old 27 April 2016, 04:15 PM
Sooeygun Sooeygun is offline
 
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Default Alberta parents convicted in toddler's meningitis death

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgar...dict-1.3552941

"A packed Lethbridge, Alta., courtroom erupted with emotion on Tuesday afternoon, after two parents accused of letting their son die from bacterial meningitis were found guilty.

David Stephan, 32, and Collet Stephan, 36, were charged a year after their nearly 19-month-old son Ezekiel died in March 2012, under Section 215 of the Criminal Code which deals with "failing to provide the necessaries of life.""
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  #2  
Old 27 April 2016, 06:12 PM
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UEL UEL is offline
 
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Originally Posted by Sooeygun View Post
... erupted with emotion on Tuesday afternoon...
What an odd, but accurate description.

Based upon what I read, it was split along those supporting the defendants and those against the defendants. Very skilled word choice there.
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  #3  
Old 27 April 2016, 06:39 PM
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Someone on my FB is ranting that if these parents had been First Nations that they wouldn't have even been charged and certainly never convicted. I really doubt that's true but arguing with her is like punching jello.
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  #4  
Old 27 April 2016, 07:24 PM
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Someone on my FB is ranting that if these parents had been First Nations that they wouldn't have even been charged and certainly never convicted. I really doubt that's true but arguing with her is like punching jello.
Probably because of cases like this this one where a First Nations child who was going through a rough bout of chemotherapy for otherwise survivable leukemia died after being taken off of it and going through holistic treatment. The parents naturally blame the chemotherapy for her death. Nobody was charged with a crime.

Also this case in which the hospital lost a court battle to have a First Nations child taken from her family and given life-saving chemo. The family eventually gave in and started real medicine and "blended" treatment. I haven't been able to find out if she survived, but nobody was charged with a crime here either.

In light of that, this ruling seems incredibly hypocritical. The parents were clearly trying to help their child and being taken advantage of by the same breed of quack doctors who've definitely killed one child and nearly killed another.
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Old 27 April 2016, 07:40 PM
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AmISam AmISam is offline
 
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From what I've read, and I'd have to look back through the news reports for cites, this couple actually run a naturopathic store and were essentially treating the child themselves with advice from the internet. According to court reports, when they did consult a naturopath she told them to take the child immediately to emergency.

I do agree that there may be a level of hypocrisy there, but, on the other hand their actions did essentially allow the child to die. There was no dispute even from the prosecution that they loved their child and thought they they were doing what was best.

Last edited by AmISam; 27 April 2016 at 07:40 PM. Reason: were not where
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  #6  
Old 27 April 2016, 11:41 PM
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I'm just going off the OP article, which notes the awful natural treatments they used but doesn't suggest the naturopath actually did anything but give them even more.

And just I was going to look up a little more info on the case for my own knowledge, I find this:


Complaint against Alberta naturopath in toddler case being investigated


Quote:
The mother also took the boy to a naturopathic clinic in Lethbridge and picked up an echinacea mixture for the child, although there was conflicting evidence about whether the naturopathic doctor talked to Collet Stephan.
SUPER short article but that part appears the most relevant. So yea, maybe they did do this entirely on their own which is a great deal worse :/

I also found another case in Canada of a mother going to trial for the death of her 7-year-old using the same types of cures.

http://calgaryherald.com/news/local-...atally-ill-son

Should be interesting to see how that turns out in light of this case, but at least it seems to be less of hypocrisy and more of a case of possibly change in stance. Of course looking at the two First Nations cases, both children had originally started chemo before the treatment was discontinued, so maybe that was a factor too?

EDIT: Okay, now I found an article that talks a bit more about the family's business and anti-vaxx stance.

http://www.torontosun.com/2016/04/26...rom-meningitis

Quote:
David Stephan, 32, told The Canadian Press in a pre-trial interview he believed he and his wife were charged because they didn't vaccinate their children and, in part, because of his family's business.

His father, Anthony Stephan, co-founded Truehope Nutritional Support in Raymond, Alta., in 1996 after his wife committed suicide. The company's website says the woman and some of the couple's 10 children had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, so Anthony Stephan formed the company with a friend to find a natural treatment.

The company says one of their products, EMPowerplus, helps treat bipolar disorder, depression and even autism. Truehope fought to be able to sell EMPowerplus for more than a decade before an Alberta judge ruled that it could be sold here as a drug.

David Stephan, a Truehope vice-president, said he heard so many stories from parents about vaccinations causing autism in their children that he and his wife decided they wouldn't vaccinate their own kids, adding that still held true for their three remaining boys.
And yikes, this quote from the brother-in-law of the accused:

Quote:
David Stephan's brother-in-law said he was both saddened and angry.

"I was in tears like everybody else," said Eric Sveinson. "I was angry, frustrated. We're very disheartened and very disappointed and hope that the world can see that a beautiful family was unjustly charged today.

"Parents now need to be afraid when their kid has a cough, when their kid has a cold because you better bring him in the second he sniffles or the second he coughs because if you don't, the Crown is going to be after you."
.... Uh, yes, you SHOULD be taking a sick child to see a doctor, you crazy person who I am really hoping is in no position to make choices about medical care for children :/

Last edited by Rebochan; 27 April 2016 at 11:48 PM.
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  #7  
Old 28 April 2016, 12:22 AM
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Quote:
"Parents now need to be afraid when their kid has a cough, when their kid has a cold because you better bring him in the second he sniffles or the second he coughs because if you don't, the Crown is going to be after you."
Or here's an idea when your toddler is so stiff you can't even put him in a car seat maybe that's the time you take him to a doctor .

Last edited by Sue; 28 April 2016 at 12:41 AM.
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  #8  
Old 28 April 2016, 12:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Sue View Post
Or here's an idea when your toddler is so stiff you can't even put him in a car seat maybe that's the time you take him to a doctor .
Might be a good idea.
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  #9  
Old 28 April 2016, 01:16 PM
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Here's the article that I was thinking of that gives a fairly detailed timeline of the child's illness.
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgar...port-1.3533174
One of the key things for me was that the parents actually concluded that it was meningitis and continued not to seek medical help. This report does differ slightly from others in that it says that they called the naturopath and asked about meningitis treatments and were recommended a product rather than being told to seek medical help.
The naturopath is now under investigation by the industry body.
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgar...tion-1.3554468

With regard to Rebochan's question of whether the prosecution is hypocritical in the case of Makayla Sault (Rebochan's first link - http://www.cbc.ca/news/aboriginal/ma...dies-1.2829885) it went through similar levels of initial investigation with child services finding
Quote:
When Makayla decided against continuing chemotherapy, the hospital referred her case to Brant Family and Children's Services. After a brief investigation, it decided Makayla was not a child in need of protection and that it would not apprehend her to return her to treatment.

In an interview with CBC News in May, before the agency closed its investigation, Koster said, "For us to take her away, to apprehend and place in a home with strangers, if that's the case, if there aren't any relatives, when she's very, very ill I can't see how that would be helpful."

I think people much more knowledgeable than ourselves need to be involved to look at what types of traditional medicines are being used, how does it fare up to some of the chemo treatments," said Koster.
Makayla Sault was a lot older than Ezekiel Stephan and, at least in part, made her own choice to discontinue chemo. I suspect that the rants that Sue is seeing are more directed at "First Nation's Favoritism" than anything else. And none of this speaks to the fact that the life transformation clinic that Makayla went to is potentially a scam and has little to do with traditional medicine.
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  #10  
Old 29 April 2016, 04:11 AM
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Thanks for the links. Given the testimony of the doctor in the case, it's pretty easy to see why they were convicted. I also appreciate the insight into the Sault case.

Yay Florida, that stupid spa is still allowed to operate...
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  #11  
Old 29 April 2016, 01:03 PM
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Also at issue in the Sault case is the fact that "traditional medicine" for Native-americans is also somewhat linked to religion, whereas naturopathic medicine is strictly a modern science/anti-science debate not linked to a specific religiion.
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  #12  
Old 29 April 2016, 11:13 PM
Zylly Zylly is offline
 
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You know, I'm all for religious liberty, but the more I hear about cases like this, the more I think it ought to be illegal not to get medical care for your kids if they're under 18.
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  #13  
Old 30 April 2016, 06:43 PM
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I don't see any connection to religion for the OP.

But I agree that there should be no religious exemption for providing proper care for a child, medical or otherwise.

As for the OP, I'm also wondering about some of the "natural remedies" they gave. We've discussed here before whether it is abuse to force a child to drink a shot of hot sauce as a method of discipline (some people do this). The articles mention that some of the remedies they tried were garlic, hot peppers, and horseradish. I wonder about how those were administered. Though I am so saddened by this that I should probably just let it go.
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Old 01 May 2016, 05:37 AM
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Medical neglect should result in automatic and permanent lose of custody, no matter what form of superstitious nonsense is used to justify it. "Traditional medicine" is complete and utter bull with absolutely NO medical benefit and anyone who would trust it over modern medicine is unfit to care for children.
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Old 01 May 2016, 01:33 PM
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I can understand their family and friends being supportive of them, even though the mind boggles - but what I can't understand is the insistence that "now this means the government can force you to take your child to the doctor when he sneezes". There is no sense of proportion at all. This child died needlessly and he suffered for weeks. Do the parents and the enablers feel no regret? No remorse? Would they do the same thing again? If so I agree with you CD these people should not be allowed to parent children.
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Old 01 May 2016, 01:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Coughdrops View Post
Medical neglect should result in automatic and permanent lose of custody, no matter what form of superstitious nonsense is used to justify it. "Traditional medicine" is complete and utter bull with absolutely NO medical benefit and anyone who would trust it over modern medicine is unfit to care for children.
I can't imagine a better way to drive parents underground with their children if they already lack trust in the medical establishment. Be prepared for an epidemic of school avoidance as well. Plus, good luck finding foster and adoptive homes, as they are already not sufficient to meet the demand.
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  #17  
Old 02 May 2016, 12:54 AM
Coughdrops Coughdrops is offline
 
 
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Originally Posted by wanderwoman View Post
I can't imagine a better way to drive parents underground with their children if they already lack trust in the medical establishment. Be prepared for an epidemic of school avoidance as well. Plus, good luck finding foster and adoptive homes, as they are already not sufficient to meet the demand.

If we apply that logic to other types of abuse the flaws become glaring. "Taking children from homes where they are beaten and raped might make their families go underground and avoid school. It also puts a strain on the foster system. So let's just ignore it."

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sue View Post
I can understand their family and friends being supportive of them, even though the mind boggles - but what I can't understand is the insistence that "now this means the government can force you to take your child to the doctor when he sneezes". There is no sense of proportion at all. This child died needlessly and he suffered for weeks. Do the parents and the enablers feel no regret? No remorse? Would they do the same thing again? If so I agree with you CD these people should not be allowed to parent children.

They're essentially saying that they'd rather have a dead child then admit they were wrong. They don't even seem to view the kids as their children, just as tools to use to further push their ridiculous vaccine conspiracies. They are completely willing to make them endure needless suffering and perhaps even death solely because of their egos and narcissism.

Not to mention these people's "anti-government" stances tend to be total bull too. They'll demand waivers from vaccine laws...then turn around and demand benefits if their child is not perfect. They want everything their way with no accountability.

Last edited by Coughdrops; 02 May 2016 at 01:07 AM.
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  #18  
Old 02 May 2016, 01:53 AM
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False dichotomy.
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Old 02 May 2016, 04:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Coughdrops View Post
If we apply that logic to other types of abuse the flaws become glaring. "Taking children from homes where they are beaten and raped might make their families go underground and avoid school. It also puts a strain on the foster system. So let's just ignore it."
There are usually better ways of working with families than removing their children forever. Your solution is punitive rather than prescriptive. Fortunately, people who actually do this work have more in their toolbox than you seem to be able to imagine.

By the way, you often put statements in quotation marks when nobody has said what you purport to be quoting. That is wrong, and you should stop doing it if you want to have an honest conversation.
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  #20  
Old 02 May 2016, 09:06 AM
Coughdrops Coughdrops is offline
 
 
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Using quotation marks is how you show that you're writing what someone is saying. It doesn't mean that you are saying "This person said exactly this." You could be saying "This is something this person might say." or "This is what they were saying if applied to a different context."

Or to put it another way, if I write "I bet next Trump will say 'We should put a wall around the middle east.'" does not mean that is something he has actually said, it was merely making a guess at what he might say.
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