Family that starved baby to death pushing Texas to legalize euthanasia
PORTLAND, TX, March 28, 2014 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A family is campaigning for Texas to legalize euthanasia after starving a 21-month-old girl to death.
Brad Newton's granddaughter, Natalie, fell into the family's swimming pool when she was 19-months-old.
Natalie, or “Natty” as the family called her, was rushed to Driscoll Children's Hospital in Corpus Christi. When she awoke Natalie had lost her ability to see, hear, and move. Organs began to fail.
The family told local media doctors said Natalie had a four percent chance to live if she survived a year.
That's when Brad said he began to “think that dreadful thought: we can’t let her live like this.”
Doctors at the hospital voted to allow Natalie to die by having her feeding tube removed and sent home with her family.
“You realize, isn't that starving her to death?” Brad said. “Well why can't we inject like, some morphine or something? Do something peaceful and quick?"
Deprived of food and water, Natalie died after nine days of “pure torture,” a death Newton described as “just the most cruel, inhumane thing.”
Now, Brad and his family are campaigning around the state to legalize euthanasia. “I want the laws changed so you have an option to go peacefully if you want, for the dignity of yourself and your family,” he said.
The current law “takes their dignity and their soul, too. It’s outright criminal.”
Belgium recently legalized child euthanasia. But analysts say that is the wrong approach in Texas, or any other state.
Alex Schadenberg of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition, told LifeSiteNews, “It is always tragic when a child dies, but that is no reason to seek the legalization of euthanasia or assisted suicide.”
Texas Right to Life told LifeSiteNews that their organization opposes loosening restrictions on physician-administered deaths.
“Euthanasia is a Pandora's box that allows for third party judgment calls about the value of a patient's life and places death targets upon the frail, ill, and disabled,” Melissa L. Conway, director of external relations for Texas Right to Life, told LifeSiteNews. “Quite often, those who are the targets of euthanasia are not those in severe pain or with tubes attached to their bodies. They are everyday people who have just grown old or fallen ill and cannot eat or swallow on their own or care for themselves autonomously.”
Many of them, she said, are “fully capable of partial or complete recovery.”
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State medical experts share her assessment. Dr. Sara Austin, a member of the Council on Legislation for the Texas Medical Association, said, "I haven't run across a case where I felt like to actually be compassionate and to treat this person with dignity, that I needed to hasten their death.”
“There are too many ethical concerns that befall euthanasia and the slippery slope of a decreased regard for the value of life,” Conway told LifeSiteNews.
Victims fare better when families enhance the dignity of the one suffering by cherishing and sustaining life, Schadenberg said.
“Society needs to care for all of its citizens, even at the most vulnerable time of their life,” Schadenberg told LifeSiteNews. “We need a society that cares and not kills.”