My post “Where’s Mary?” from earlier this week has generated some interest from a fellow ex-Christian Scientist blogger (who re-blogged it on her blog) and some of her/his followers, although I don’t think the Christian Science apologist really read my post. In this post, I ask the rhetorical questions, “What are Christian Scientists afraid of?” and “Why are Christian Scientists in stealth mode?”. While I do sort of answer them in the post, here’s an in-your-face answer to that: a video by Liz Heywood, a survivor of religious-based child neglect. I’ve talked about her case many times in the past, how her Christian Scientist parents chose prayer over conventional medical treatment to treat a bone infection that left her permanently crippled, eventually necessitating amputation of the affected leg. Had her parents sought treatment, she could have been successfully treated with antibiotics, and the whole thing would have been an anecdotal memory of childhood.
So, what is it that Christian Scientists are hiding from? What is the uncomfortable truth that scares them? Me thinks it is the undeniable fact that Christian Science doesn’t work, it doesn’t heal, and there are tragic consequences. Liz Heywood is an uncomfortable truth that Christian Scientists absolutely cannot deny. I dare them to try.
Liz is now part of an organized effort to repeal religious exemptions that exist in the child neglect laws of over 30 states in the United States (fortunately for the rest of us outside of the United States, no such exemptions exist as far as I know). It is these sorts of exemptions that allowed Liz’s parents to face no legal consequences for not seeking proper physical care for her; and also for many other faith healing parents, some of whose children have died in horrifically agonizing ways to face no legal consequences for their poor choices in health care. This travesty must end! This horror is by no means limited to Christian Scientists, but it is the Christian Science Church that got these exemptions enacted in the first place through intensive lobbying at the federal level. Christian Science has always been that acceptable, intellectual, nice façade to this insanity that too many legislators buy into under the guise of religious freedom. The Christian Science church bears some of the responsibility for all the children who suffer and die because these exemptions exist. The legislators that bought into their lobbying bear the rest.
They are starting in Liz’s home state of New York. They have a Facebook group. If you support this cause, join the Facebook group. If you have skills or knowledge that can help, offer them up. Any support will be gratefully accepted. If you live in New York, write or meet with your local Assembly member or Senator and tell them you support this repeal effort and that you want them to support it too. Ask your legislators to sign on as sponsors for whatever bill comes up as a result of these efforts. If a bill has a broad (and even better bi-partisan) base of sponsorship, it stands a better chance of passing. If you live in another state that has these exemptions, get on board and contact your state representatives. You’d better believe that the Christian Science Church will know the minute a repeal bill is filed anywhere, and they will mobilize their resistance.
For the stories of more uncomfortable truths about the dangers of faith healing, pay a visit to this page. These are all truths that cannot and should not be denied. If you want to support an organization that works to help the victims of religiously based child neglect, consider joining C.H.I.L.D. Inc. It’s only USD $40.00 per year. It’s well worth the investment, and you can pay with PayPal. In the United States, donations and dues are tax deductible [IRS 503(c)3]. I find it ironic, I once worked for and supported an organization that considers C.H.I.L.D. Inc. their public enemy #1, and I used to feel the same way. Now, I’ve joined C.H.I.L.D., Inc. The circle of life…it takes interesting and unexpected turns.