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Ethan Begrowicz

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Should Hospitals have the right to treat patients while ignoring their religious beliefs or general beliefs.

Lately, I have been reading a lot of stories of Hospitals treating very sick kids while ignoring their parents religious beliefs. Now the question I have to the TED community is do you think this is right? I believe that Hospitals should have the right to treat the sick while ignoring people's religious beliefs. Why you may ask? Because religion has not yet caught up to science. Why would anyone want to leave their life in the hands of religion which is not proven to save your life? Compared to medical treatments which are proven to give you a better chance of living. Now I am not here to offend anyone's views or beliefs I just wanted to get some feedback on this issue. My thinking is is that once my life is endangered religion is an afterthought. Thank you

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    Dec 1 2013: Ethan,
    Faith healing is widely practiced by Christian Scientists, Pentecostals, the Church of the First Born, the Followers of Christ, and myriad smaller sects. Many of these believers reject all medical treatment in favor of prayer, anointing with oils, and sometimes exorcisms. Some even deny the reality of illness. When they reject medical treatment for their children, they may be guilty of negligence and homicide. Until recently, religious shield laws have protected them from prosecution; but the laws are changing, as are public attitudes. Freedom of religion has come into conflict with the duty of society to protect children. The right to believe does not extend to the right to endanger the lives of children- is like religiously motivated child abuse-.
    However faith-based organizations are lobbying for the right to treat dependents and themselves “spiritually” and with spiritual practitioners instead of Physicians. That means that if someone's child gets sick and the parents hire a “spiritual practitioner” to pray for that child and the child suffers injury or even death, the parents (in some states) will not be charged. Neither will the “practitioner.” Children can die from treatable illness and can suffer severe injury due to lack of preventative care, and because it is done in the name of religion, the state doesn't prosecute.People of Faith pay Thousands of dollars to have "someone" to pray away their illness These people are told not to see doctors and not to pray($$$) for themselves because that might “interfere.” Religious freedom or license to kill?,it's horrible.Absolutely no one,has the freedom to harm their children or dependents for any reason. The rights of one person end where the wellbeing and safety of children begin. We must choose as a society to protect children above protecting the religious rights of their parents. There can be no exception to standards of physical health and safety for children. Period.
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      Dec 9 2013: I agree. If adults prefer magic to medicine, fine, but their children should not be denied medical treatment because of their parents beliefs.
    • Dec 13 2013: I also agree. Thank you for your comments

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