The vegan parents of a baby girl they condemned to a lifetime of brain damage pleaded guilty to negligently causing serious injury, thus avoiding jail time. They will have to perform 12 months of community service, and will also have to undergo mental observation and treatment.
Talk about locking the barn door after the horse has escaped.
Having ignored all legitimate health advice regarding the nutritional needs of infants for a full year, the parents took their 12-month-old baby girl to an emergency clinic in August 2018 with her suffering from extreme malnutrition, open wounds, rashes, bruises, discoloration of her skin, internal bleeding and blood in her stool. Her condition, doctors said, resembled those of babies being raised in countries during famines.
A week before, the father had sought the help of an online vegan website, writing,
“Hi my 1-year-old has stopped wanting to drink/eat and when she does, it’s not staying down or she starts to cough,” he reportedly wrote in the email. “What can I do to help her keep it down and allow her to drink? She doesn’t have a temp. She is on a fruit diet. Please help asap.”
The recommended solution: “stomach tea.” The parents had decided that they didn’t trust doctors after being told told that their baby required more than the coconut water and health store powders that they began feeding her after she stopped breast-feeding.
After a month in intensive care with a balanced diet, the girl is going to survive, but with severe brain damage and cerebral palsy.
The only reason the parents aren’t serving long sentences for negligent homicide is the sentimental and irresponsible “he’s/she’s suffered enough” rationalization we most frequently see in the locked car deaths of kids in the U.S. But this is far worse. An analogy would be parents who ignored warnings and locked their children in hot cars believing it would be good for them. The Australian parents need to be punished severely with their fate well-publicized. If another child dies or is permanently disabled because of this kind of obstinate idiocy, the judge, Claire Quin of County Court of Victoria is an accessory.
I particularly like her sentencing the parents to psychiatric treatment. You can’t fix stupid, Your Honor.
The parents are now separated, and, incredibly, the disabled three-year-old girl is now in the care and custody of the mother who ruined her life. I wouldn’t trust that women to take care of a goldfish.