Alpine Summit

Thursday, January 04, 2007

For Your Consideration

I found this article from Drudge and thought it was interesting if not horrifying. I'm going to have to say this is not something with which I can agree. First off, her mental condition's cause is unknown. Who's to say that her brain can't "catch up?" I would imagine some Doctors have deemed that impossible, but I'm usually, if not always, against limiting options for people.

Where do we stop with this? Could a quadriplegic child be given this treatment against their will? Even if they were mentally mature and protested, being a minor means they have no say in what their parents do. One would argue that having such a procedure done for them would be in their best interests in the same way it's in Ashley's best interest. Mary Johnson, editor of Ragged Edge, an online magazine for disability activists had this to say.

She said she felt for Ashley's parents and could understand why they had made the decision. But she feared that the treatment would open a Pandora's box that could have adverse effects for other children. "What will now be said in the case of a child with spina bifida, who you could argue has the same physical challenges but whose brain is fully functioning? This is very troubling."

People should consider the implications of their actions on ethical dilemmas like this because from what I've read, yeah Ashley's parents are having a hard time, but don't they owe it to their daughter to give her the best opportunities they can? I'm sure they think they have, but I'm afraid they made the wrong choice.