Putting Illegal Alien Rights Ahead of Our Children’s Rights – Mass. Legislature Ignores “Justina’s Law”
Republican Rep. Sheila Harrington Called Out (Again) for Putting Government Control Above Parents’ Rights
by Kristi Devine
Last month’s hearing before the Judiciary Committee was inundated with people primarily fighting for the rights of immigrants. It was good to see the outpouring of concern for our fellow mankind, but I sat there for six hours to testify on Justina’s Law without being heard on that topic. There was no other individual who spoke to that issue, and I can’t help but wonder if all the people there, so concerned for immigrants’ rights, were aware that their own basic, inalienable rights were being eroded and were up for discussion and vote at that same hearing.
Justina’s Law is pretty basic in that it seeks to allow parents to get a second opinion, and/or to choose and direct the medical treatment for their child without being charged with neglect or abuse and having their child taken from them. Justina’s Law specifies that they must do so through a licensed doctor, which is pretty much what we have all believed all along is our option/right. Before Connecticut resident Justina Pelletier was abducted by Boston Children’s Hospital and made a ward of the state of Massachusetts, it was thought no law was required to protect either parents or children from such a horrific plight as the Pelletier family was subjected to, but we have since been rudely awakened. What happened to Justina Pelletier was no less than anyone’s worst nightmare, yet is happening to tens of thousands throughout the country, and we just don’t hear of these others. See MedicalKidnap.com for a mere fraction of similar or worse stories that are not picked up by mainstream media as Justina Pelletier’s plight was.
While it took 15 months, thousands of people in the street in front of the State House, even more phone calls to the governor, and virtually every news outlet, even internationally, reporting on Justina to get her free and reunited with her parents, all the other similar situations go unreported and ignored. This is primarily because they do not have advocates such as Justina’s father, who risked jail time by breaking an obscene and unconstitutional gag order imposed by a Massachusetts judge to save his daughter’s life.
Broadside Photo – Jeffrey T. Kuhner “FREE JUSTINA” Rally – Mass. Statehouse, 2014
Justina was immensely harmed and abused in her captivity by the state of Massachusetts, and the public was even made privy to the punishing and retaliating tactics used against her and her family for the public outrage their speaking out had caused. Sent to Boston Children’s Hospital for a consult by someone originally on the Tufts Medical Center team of specialists treating Justina, she was instead seen by a resident who determined her problems were all in her head. At fourteen years old, and against her and her parents’ wishes, she was forced into a locked down psych ward for over ten months until public outcry and outrage saw her release. Even then, it was to another state-run facility where her and her family’s most basic rights continued to be abused and violated. Taxpayers likely paid untold millions for this travesty.
This is happening so much more than people are willing to believe. Because it is so draconian, the public assumes it was some sort of horrible aberration. It is not. It is common practice, and legislators such as State Representative Harrington, who diligently fought against the release of Justina Pelletier throughout this tragedy, had THIS to say relative to voting against the bill that strives to prevent this from ever happening again:
AMENDMENT #870 – JUSTINA’S AMENDMENT: Rep. Harrington asked to make a statement.
Rep. Harrington said, I don’t wish to make a habit speaking after a vote. But this is going to face us throughout this session. Some recall I spoke on this before. We did an extensive investigation. We looked into DCF interaction with children in need. And we got info about the Pelletier case. I recently received a book called the Constitutional Parent. A child, like any other citizen, has civil rights. And they have the right to be protected at all cost. I hope the state changes our standard in the best interest of the child. No other human being’s rights, a parent included, is superior to that child. If professionals find an issue with those parents, I don’t care who it is. No one’s rights are superior to their own civil rights. We need to approach every issue with the realization we will not deprive those children of their civil rights. I hope we consider the civil rights of all of our children. (Applause)
Not withstanding whatever may or may not have been in the DCF file that Harrington used as rational for defeating this bill, it should have no relevance in people’s choice of licensed doctors, No government agent or agency should be allowed to interfere with parental rights until such time as clear and convincing evidence is proven, in a court of law, showing that parents do not have their child’s best interests at heart. Harrington seems to be oblivious to the fact that in the vast majority of all cases, with very, very few exceptions, most parents live and breathe for their children and would risk jail, and even death for them. Yet Harrington’s crusade to keep Justina a ward of the state, and other children from being denied their parents’ love, care, and medical decisions based on a child’s “best interests” trumping all others begs the question: “What in God’s name was the best interests for Justina in the torture she was subjected to for the 15 months she was made a ward of the state of Massachusetts?” She was visibly and dramatically declining in state care, and was all the worse off physically, mentally, medically, and likely permanently as a result of her confinement and treatment by Boston Children’s Hospital!
Moreover, and I would have posed this question to Rep. Harrington at the hearing had I been able to testify on the matter, “Where in God’s name were any of Justina’s civil rights protected or preserved when Harrington claims: ‘we will not deprive those children of their civil rights’?”
I implore the citizenry of Massachusetts to stand up and speak up for their PARENTAL RIGHTS, before this nightmare happens to them, or their children, or their children’s children, and you can be very sure it will happen to the immigrant population as well if you don’t. ♦