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Alfie Evans more than 48 hours after he was removed from his ventilator on April 23, 2018. Kate James / Facebook

LIVERPOOL, England, May 9, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – Today would have been the second birthday of Alfie Evans, the baby who died on April 28 after British and European courts refused his parents’ herculean efforts to remove him from the hospital that decided the toddler's death was in his “best interest.”

Supporters in Liverpool are marking the date with a candlelight vigil. Hopefully, it will offer some measure of comfort to Tom Evans and Kate James, along with the knowledge that their sweet little boy is in heaven right now, free of the health issues and human callousness that made his life so short.

Still, this isn’t how children’s birthdays are supposed to go. This should be a day of cheer and laughter, of friends and family gathering over cake, with Tom and Kate opening presents that their son might be too young to appreciate, but would delight him all the same. Instead, Alfie’s birthday is a day of sorrow – because Alder Hey Children’s Hospital and the U.K. court system chose to make it a day of sorrow. Alfie was removed by court order from his ventilator on April 23. He defied medical expectations by beginning to breathe on his own. He continued to breathe on his own for five days. He was given a series of four drug injections shortly before his death.  

Nobody can say with certainty whether Alfie could have been cured, or how long he would have lived, but we do know his life wouldn’t have ended when it did if a line of medical and legal authorities hadn’t made the conscious choice that it should end, and if the rest of the British government and even many of the country’s bishops hadn’t decided such a choice was acceptable. 

The rationale defies any human comprehension.

The Vatican-owned Bambino Gesù Hospital in Rome had offered to take over Alfie’s care, so it wouldn’t have cost Alder Hey more money. His parents’ attorney confirmed that Alfie would be able to survive air travel, and medical staff stood ready to care for him during the trip, so a transfer wouldn’t have increased the risk (besides, the worst-case scenario, Alfie dying in transit, would’ve been the outcome Alder Hey wanted anyway, with the bonus of a chance to say “we told you so”).

If, for instance, Alder Hey was right and Alfie would’ve naturally died in Rome six months from now, at least his parents would be able to take comfort in the fact that every effort was made to save him. What harm would there have been in giving them that?

The only motive for obstruction that makes any sort of twisted, depraved sense is that, if another hospital got its hands on Alfie and proved his case wasn’t hopeless, it would have undermined the credibility of Alder Hey’s medical judgment – and, by extension, the authority of the U.K.’s entire socialized medical system.

And when total control over the individual and the family rests on the premise that the state knows better than they do, the regime can’t afford to take those kinds of chances. So Alfie Evans had to die.

This was not a good-faith dispute over the proper solution to impossible circumstances. It was the deliberate sacrifice of a child to protect an ideology that’s replaced God in far too many hearts.

If that sounds a bit extreme, then ask yourself why British Prime Minister Theresa May’s take on the case was not to identify a specific point on which Alfie’s defenders were mistaken, but to declare that the judgment of “expert clinicians” was not to be questioned. Ask yourself why advocates of socialized medicine on this side of the pond don’t want to discuss Alfie at all.

Socialized medicine clouded Alfie Evans’ birthday with heartbreak instead of joy, but perhaps some silver linings can be found if it wakes up enough people to how much power they’ve surrendered to their governments.

So, happy birthday, Alfie. We’ll be praying that your example drives the civilized world to ensure that more children live to see theirs. Your short life has inspired millions around the world. Your life has not been in vain and you will be remembered for years to come.

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Calvin Freiburger is a Wisconsin-based conservative writer and 2011 graduate of Hillsdale College. His commentary and analysis have been featured on NewsReal Blog, Live Action, and various other conservative websites. Before joining LifeSiteNews, he spent two years in Washington, DC, working to build support for the Life at Conception Act with the National Pro-Life Alliance, then worked a year and a half as assistant editor of TheFederalistPapers.org. You can follow him on Twitter @CalFreiburger, and check out his personal website, ConservativeStandards.com.

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