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Do you think parents have the right to make medical decisions based on their religious beliefs?


Asked by Anonymous at 1:10 PM on Nov. 14, 2009 in Religion & Beliefs

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Answers (26)
  • There just isn't an easy answer to this question.

    This is true, but God entrusted you with the life of your child, and God gave physicians the knowledge to save lives from diseases and conditions that would have been fatal even a few years ago. It's been less than 100 years since just getting pregnant and giving birth was a HUGE risk, even in developed countries. If a mother used prenatal care and gave birth in a hospital, that is proof-positive that she believes in modern medicine for herself, and therefore if she doesn't seek medical attention for her child when it is clearly indicated, she should be held responsible for that child's death.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:19 PM on Nov. 14, 2009

  • No. Especially not in life or death situations. If your kid is going to die from brain cancer, and you think praying can cure it, and your kid does die from should be prosecuted. It's called MODERN medicine for a reason.

    Answer by caitxrawks at 1:13 PM on Nov. 14, 2009

  • Do I think they have a right? Legally, I know that they do. I have seen religious groups stand in front of the doors of patient rooms (of patients who subscribes to their religion and agrees to them being there) making sure that no one should come in and perform an action that is against their religion. One particular case involving a child was heartbreaking which, for understandable reasons, I can't go into details. But yes, this is their right.

    Should it be their right? Yes, I think so. What is the point of prolonging someone's life on earth by a few years by performing a "condemned" medical treatment when the individual or their parents think that it will condemn them for eternity? Try to crawl inside the head of someone that truly believes something like that. If you thought--truly, honestly believed, that a medical treatment would send you or your child to hell, would you let them have the treatment? (cont.)

    Answer by NovemberLove at 1:18 PM on Nov. 14, 2009

  • When my son was born he needed bypass surgery. Drs told SO "if u don't do this he will die". I found out they're so blunt cuz of jehovah's. I can't imagine putting my faith b4 my child's possibility for survival.

    Answer by Vero0724 at 1:18 PM on Nov. 14, 2009

  • The only acception is if a child wants the treatment or is too young to voice their opinion. Then I think it would be appropriate for an advocate to attempt to seek temporary custody to honor the wishes of a the child.

    Patients deny treatment for any number of reasons and all are equally important. Just because you think someone's religion is false or stupid does not mean the law should violate their rights within their beliefs. A person should be able to deny treatment for whatever reason they want. I don't believe that cranking someone back to live against their will is the lesser evil to that person living their remaining years feeling condemned.

    Answer by NovemberLove at 1:22 PM on Nov. 14, 2009

  • Yes they have the right to as long as the religion is actually a religion sent by God and not one made up by man. So in essence everyone would do what they have to do to save their children because God would not forbid them from doing so. Lets research Judaism, Chrisitanity as preached by Jesus and Islam (the three most known religions) and see what they say... would be interesting to know

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:24 PM on Nov. 14, 2009

  • Anon, we could be here all day with each person arguing what specific religion or denomination they follow is actually from God or not. Then there would be people that would say that there is no God or just a "force." The burden of proof is with the believers. It's not the the place of the law to decide if God exists and which religions are right or wrong. It's not their job to enforce a generic "fairytale" ending for every person. It is the job of the law to respect no religion over another and let each person practice what they believe so long as it does not violate another person's fundamental rights.

    Answer by NovemberLove at 1:30 PM on Nov. 14, 2009

  • depends on the situation actually. I think it would be very dangerous to make this a blanket rule for every situation.

    Answer by Kattykitten at 1:34 PM on Nov. 14, 2009

  • Yes they have the right.
    Just like if you arent religous you can refuse medical treatment.
    Why should only the religous be judged for this?

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:37 PM on Nov. 14, 2009

  • That is a tough issue. It would be easier if modern medicine had all the answers, but they don't. A child with brain cancer can die despite promt medical attention & the treatment can bring down the quality of life. It just seems wrong to let another human die because of your beliefs. But parents have to do what they believe best for their children & medical attention shouldn't be forced on anyone. There just isn't an easy answer to this question.

    Answer by nysa00 at 1:38 PM on Nov. 14, 2009