Friday, March 28, 2008

Some things are not wrought by prayer

And one of those things is expecting your daughter to stay alive when she is severely diabetic and you think praying at her instead of taking her to hospital is sufficient treatment.

Police are investigating an 11-year-old girl's death from an undiagnosed, treatable form of diabetes after her parents chose to pray for her rather than take her to a doctor.

An autopsy showed Madeline Neumann died Sunday of diabetic ketoacidosis, a condition that left too little insulin in her body, Everest Metro Police Chief Dan Vergin said.

Apparently the girl had never been to a doctor after she took some shots when she was three. Wow! No booster shots? She never needed a tetanus shot even?

An interesting thing about this news report is the clever salting of it with apparently unrelated information. All of it adds up to a picture that is supposed to be as easily identifiable as a MacDonald's sign: such as, that the girl was home schooled; or that her father was a former cop; that the girl was 'known to wear her straight brown hair in a ponytail'. This, and the detail about the basketball hoop in the driveway - which I admit had me puzzled for a bit - are all very, very clever touches.

Wonder what will happen to the parents.


swar said...

Wonder what will happen to
the parents

God will happen to them, no? At the risk of sounding totally perverse, they can take consolation in the belief that their girl must have been a good soul to be taken young by God. Somewhere God loves and takes the good young, no?

But, yes, this is definitely sadder than a man claiming to speak 'Australian' after allegedly being raped by wombat.

km said...

Inexplicable. How could a parent be driven to resignation as his or her child battles a serious health condition?

Then again, I don't think our discussions and judgments will ever get to the bottom of such a psyche.

//BTW, why do you think the "basketball hoop in the driveway" is "salting up"? Almost every suburban home here (that has a kid) has a hoop.

Space Bar said...

swar: link doesn't work. but...:D

km: i meant that whether or not anybody has a basketball in the driveway is not relevant to how the girl died because her parents were praying instead of getting her medical attention. that particular detail didn't add up because while one could make a case for home-schooling, girl-next-door ponytailishness depicts a certain kind of person (in *very* broad brush strokes), like you said, *everyone* has a basketball hoop in their driveway. it doesn't particularise these people to include that detail in the story.

i'm still divided on what its inclusion indicates.

km said...

IMO, in this context, the hoop is a metaphor for a "typical" American suburban home, a symbol of normalcy.

So the subtext here is the contrast between the surroundings and the tragedy inside the house.

dipali said...

That there are still people in the USA whose beliefs leave them so marginalized is what is amazing.
Poor kid. I wonder what happens to the family once the investigations are over.

Space Bar said...

km: exactly. which is why i was confused. weren't they trying to indicate these people were fringe conservatives? (or is this condition so widespread as to appear 'normal'?)

dipali: i don't know that they were left marginalised; i think they chose to stay out of the mainstream.

i'm not even sure i'd blame anyone for not wanting to go get medical aid for every single thing (given the entire health carer woes) but this did seem excessive to me.