From Pine View Farm

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This case originates near Pine View Farm, though I do not know the family:

In all, the judge heard 11 hours of testimony before the hearing concluded late Tuesday. At issue is if the teen can make his own medical decisions and whether he can keep living with his parents and four siblings on Chincoteague, an island off Virginia’s Eastern Shore.

The judge is expected to issue a written decision by July 18.

The teen, who goes by Abraham, has Hodgkin’s disease, a cancer of the lymph nodes.

Three months of chemotherapy last year made him extremely weak. So when he learned in February that his cancer was active again, he turned — against doctors’ advice — to a sugar-free organic diet, herbs and visits to a clinic in Mexico.

I nearly wrote, “I make no judgements.”

But I do. And I know this sounds harsh, especially in our culture, which likes to pretend that everyone is immortal and death is not part of life.

The track record of Mexican alternative cancer clinics is pretty much identical to the track record of the current Federal Administration: Fraudulent, abysmal, and incompetent.

But if the kid wants to die, rather then get competent medical attention, well, I just don’t know. Who has the right to put a value on his life?

Whose choice is it to make on his behalf: death or discomfort?

What would you, dear reader, recommend? Should the Commonwealth protect him from himself?

I’m just glad I ain’t the judge.

(aside) Maybe Senator Frist can diagnose him over a television broadcast and get Congress to pass a law. He tried it once; will he try it again?



  1. Karen

    July 13, 2006 at 12:17 pm

    There is much to be said for quality of life, rather than quantity. Having said that, if a person is old enough, & mentally competent enough, said person should be able to make their own choices. Government has no business being involved in a person’s right to choose. Look at the Schiavo mess from last year. Congress had no business coming into the fray. It was bad enough with the parties that were already involved.

    The scary part is this kid choosing to go to Mexico for any kind of “treatment”. I wouldn’t take my dogs or cat to anyplace there. The comparison of Mexican medical clinics & the current members of Congress & the White House, is an apt one. Truly fitting.

  2. Frank

    July 13, 2006 at 6:50 pm

    The Mexican clinic thing is what really bothers me. He’s fallen into the hands of quacks.

    Regarding should he be forced to receive conventional treatment or not, I’m not sure. It’s not as if he were a four-year-old with the measles whose parents refuse to take him to the doctor; the Commonwealth would clearly have grounds for stepping in in such a case.

    Yet he’s clearly not making a good choice, nor a choice which, in the language of the law, a reasonable person would make.

    But should it be his choice alone? I do not see an easy answer.

  3. Karen

    July 14, 2006 at 8:49 am

    No, he isn’t making a good choice, but if he’s Mexican, & I’ve seen this before, then he has his own beliefs about the Mexican medical situation.

    His age would be a strong determining factor in my mind. I would also have to show him all the proof that I could, that those “clinics” are not a place to go. I would also look at his parents as well.

    I would not want to be the judge in this case.

  4. Frank

    July 14, 2006 at 7:37 pm

    I will try to keep an eye on this one.