Judge says forcing aboriginal girl to stay in chemo is to ‘impose our world view on First Nation culture’

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Timebandit Timebandit's picture

rhubarb wrote:

I am confident you can find endlless quotes supporting your point of view but I notice you don't respond to my questions, not that I have any expectation you will.

Here are two scenarios:

1) Person accepts chemotherapy as the treatment, receives a negative biopsy after treatment, is told chemotherapy worked.

2) Person receives a negative biopsy after refusing chemotherapy, biopsy is sent to a lab in the United States to "verify" results.

In my view we are observing propoganda at work, the "evidence" is framed to dismiss any results other than those supported by the cancer industry. 

 

rhubarb, I posted Connie Walker's article because she's a FN woman who is also an investigative reporter, one who has been in direct contact with both JJ and her mother and with the quack who is killing her.  In this article Connie employs a lot of her own perspective.  There have been a lot of allegations about a lack of respect for aboriginal perspectives, so I've provided one that seems to be knowledgeable on all counts. 

JJ had chemotherapy, therefore your scenario #2 is irrelevant to this discussion.

I don't have much to respond with to your rejection of evidence.  All I can point to is that you've provided no evidence at any point in this very lengthy thread.  You've emplyed hostile ad hominem arguments, claimed non-specific anecdotes, accused posters of racism and cultural insensitivity and howled about offense.  You've spouted some of the favourite tropes of the worst kind of fraudster there is, the medical quack.  But not one, single, documented case of alt med curing leukemia.

So before you demand I answer any more questions, how about you pony up some evidence more substantial than your feels and then we can compare and contrast.  In the meantime, you've got nothing but hot air to add to the conversation.

rhubarb

Timebandit wrote:

....

I don't have much to respond with to your rejection of evidence.  All I can point to is that you've provided no evidence at any point in this very lengthy thread.  You've emplyed hostile ad hominem arguments, claimed non-specific anecdotes, accused posters of racism and cultural insensitivity and howled about offense.  You've spouted some of the favourite tropes of the worst kind of fraudster there is, the medical quack.  But not one, single, documented case of alt med curing leukemia.

So before you demand I answer any more questions, how about you pony up some evidence more substantial than your feels and then we can compare and contrast.  In the meantime, you've got nothing but hot air to add to the conversation.

Sorry, no propaganda to offer nor do I feel I need to, as to observations that colonialism equals racism that is just true, as to howling...  LOL  To anyone joining the thread, please take the time to read it, unless of course you are part of Time Bandit's multiplicity ....of fans.

 

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

I'm not sure what you mean by "multiplicity... of fans".  Are you accusing me of making sock puppets?

I think that you're conflating colonialism with concerns over a child receiving appropriate medical care.  I'm pretty sure Connie Walker, for instance, is not promoting colonialism.

rhubarb

I accuse you of supporting a view that offers no respect for the First Nations people.

I have posted to show my respect for the right of First Nations peoples to find their own way.  For me, this this thread is not about who is right or who is wrong, it is about their right to choose what treatments they will pursue.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

rhubarb wrote:

I accuse you of supporting a view that offers no respect for the First Nations people.

That has nothing to do with "multiplicity... of fans." 

Quote:
I have posted to show my respect for the right of First Nations peoples to find their own way.  For me, this this thread is not about who is right or who is wrong, it is about their right to choose what treatments they will pursue.

Balls you have.  You've posted your support of quackery and alt med - a support so strong that it considers the death of a child perfectly okay as long as her mother is making choices that support your prejudices against science and medicine.

As Connie Walker points out, this was never about respecting indiginous practices - even if people have used the situation to make hay over the issue.

rhubarb

Timebandit wrote:

rhubarb wrote:

I accuse you of supporting a view that offers no respect for the First Nations people.

That has nothing to do with "multiplicity... of fans." 

Quote:
I have posted to show my respect for the right of First Nations peoples to find their own way.  For me, this this thread is not about who is right or who is wrong, it is about their right to choose what treatments they will pursue.

Balls you have.  You've posted your support of quackery and alt med - a support so strong that it considers the death of a child perfectly okay as long as her mother is making choices that support your prejudices against science and medicine.

As Connie Walker points out, this was never about respecting indiginous practices - even if people have used the situation to make hay over the issue.

I will not defend myself to you, nor will I defend my point of view, you are the one who is making over the top accusations (see above), you are the one revealed to be a person without respect. 

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

IOW:  I got nuthin'.

6079_Smith_W

Timebandit wrote:

Balls you have. 

Comic aside.

It took me a minute to figure that out. At first I thought it was Yoda-speak.

(edit)

More seriously, Yeah, I figured it would come to this once it turned into an alternative vs big medicine punch-up. Does it really matter what the results of the autopsy are?

 

 

 

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

If the cause of Makayla's death does matter, Smith, it's only because the alt-med believers are going to claim that refusing chemotherapy is justified by Makayla's death. 

My concern from the beginning of the thread has been that JJ isn't being protected to the extent any other child of any other race in Canada is.  Her mother loves her deeply, but is making bad decisions based on fear and ignorance.  Regardless her FN status, isn't that where the child welfare system is supposed to kick into gear?  Should the fact that this particular child is FN have any bearing on the matter?

FWIW, I think the answer to the first question is "yes", and to the second that it doesn't.  I think JJ is being treated as expendable in making a point about FN autonomy, and I find that deeply disturbing.

shartal@rogers.com

As to Alt medicine...We live in a Capitalist society it seems to me that if any of it had efficacy someone would try to sell it to us. Just look at adverts for vitamin supplemented food. Further without inspection we have no way of knowing what is in anything... So explain to me why I should trust a health food store sppliement?

6079_Smith_W

What I meant was that those who believe that the fix is in aren't likely to believe an autopsy result.

And while I agree with your concerns, I disagree with spinning this as FN children being less valuable because the federal government isn't forcing a decision on them.  Sorry, but not only are the causes of this far more complex than one family allegedly making a bad decision based on ignorance, that kind of enforced solution never has solved the problem, only made it worse.

But we have been around this point a few times already in this thread.

 

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

I find it interesting, though, that Connie Walker asks the same question - Why is an aboriginal child not afforded the same protections as other Canadian children?

I know we've been around it numerous times, but I still think it speaks volumes that different levels of government are willing to let a child die over this particular hot potato.

6079_Smith_W

Well it is a loaded question, and it is not the only reason why the two decisions were made - in particular the one by CFS. To spin it as that and that alone is not accurate.

I have pointed to a reference in another article a couple of times. Here it is again in The Star:

http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2015/01/20/ontario-law-allows-children-t...

It wasn't the alleged ignorance of her family, nor her FN status.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

But in JJ's case it was her mother's decision.

I also think that Ontario's law is ill considered.  Children should have some input into, say, custody decisions, but life and death scenarios shouldn't be left to them. 

6079_Smith_W

Be that as it may, it is the law, and the basis of the first decision. Despite the words of the judge in the trial against CFS, we have no way of knowing that there might not have been the same outcome with a child who was not FN.

But the fact that she is FN gives a bitter irony to some of the public reaction, and the claims that her life would have been more "valued" by the use of brute force.

As if we haven't been using that brute force enough.

 

 

 

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

I guess the point is that the same "brute force"* would be applied to any other child, too.  It's not a result of singling out an aboriginal child. 

*I don't actually see it that way, and don't know why Koster felt it would have to amount to a removal from her home and family as other kids have undergone court-ordered chemo while remaining with their families.  There are a number of ways this could have played out where JJ could have received medical treatment and the trauma to the family could have been minimized.

6079_Smith_W

Timebandit wrote:

I guess the point is that the same "brute force"* would be applied to any other child, too.  It's not a result of singling out an aboriginal child.

Or not. We don't know. But my point was that we don't know if the legal decisioncame down to singling out FN people, despite the judge's comments. A siimilar decision might have been reached based on the consent law.

But as I said, the irony is in contrasting that with our long history of forcing solutions on Native people, the fact that history is largely responsible for this mistrust, and the fact that it has never been a lasting solution.

MegB

Rhubarb, you have been warned, yet you continue to bait and attack. Welcome to your babble-free weekend.

Pondering

Timebandit wrote:

If the cause of Makayla's death does matter, Smith, it's only because the alt-med believers are going to claim that refusing chemotherapy is justified by Makayla's death. 

My concern from the beginning of the thread has been that JJ isn't being protected to the extent any other child of any other race in Canada is.  Her mother loves her deeply, but is making bad decisions based on fear and ignorance.  Regardless her FN status, isn't that where the child welfare system is supposed to kick into gear?  Should the fact that this particular child is FN have any bearing on the matter?

FWIW, I think the answer to the first question is "yes", and to the second that it doesn't.  I think JJ is being treated as expendable in making a point about FN autonomy, and I find that deeply disturbing.

100% yes.

swallow swallow's picture

Meg, do you feel the discussion here is in line with the aboriginal forum's mandate? 

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

6079_Smith_W wrote:

Timebandit wrote:

I guess the point is that the same "brute force"* would be applied to any other child, too.  It's not a result of singling out an aboriginal child.

Or not. We don't know. But my point was that we don't know if the legal decisioncame down to singling out FN people, despite the judge's comments. A siimilar decision might have been reached based on the consent law.

But as I said, the irony is in contrasting that with our long history of forcing solutions on Native people, the fact that history is largely responsible for this mistrust, and the fact that it has never been a lasting solution.

I was thinking about this, and something that was linked to something else brought up this link - Ontario doesn't seem to have trouble intervening with white parents espousing alt med:

[quoote]

An Ottawa father says he lost his parental decision-making rights Friday for refusing to allow doctors at CHEO to proceed with chemotherapy treatment for his 18-month-old son's leukemia.

The man can't be named because the case is being handled by Children's Aid.

He claims the hospital hasn't provided him with enough written evidence of his son's condition and isn't receptive to his desire for alternative treatment options -- namely cannabis oil.

http://www.ottawasun.com/2014/09/12/cannabis-not-chemo-for-son-with-leuk...

So if there isn't a religious or First Nations slant to it, Children's Aid absolutely will step in.  I can't help feeling that this reinforces the idea that the reason Children's Aid is not intervening in J.J.'s case because she is First Nations.

jas

Timebandit wrote:

So if there isn't a religious or First Nations slant to it, Children's Aid absolutely will step in.  I can't help feeling that this reinforces the idea that the reason Children's Aid is not intervening in J.J.'s case because she is First Nations.

They are not intervening because a court of law has said they are not only not required to, but they shouldn't. And yes, as the judgement tells us in this very thread title, it is probably because they are First Nations. This is still puzzling you? We have to go back to the first page again here?

jas

swallow wrote:

Meg, do you feel the discussion here is in line with the aboriginal forum's mandate? 

A question that has been asked here already and has still not been addressed. If the mods are not going to moderate this forum according to its mandate, should Babble really have an Aboriginal Issues forum?

6079_Smith_W

Also, it is one thing for a Children's Aid society to make a decision. Quite another for a court to overrule that decision. And it is not the same agency, but another, with a different set of circumstances.

It's not simply a review; there is a burden of proof. And one can't just assume bias across the board based on anecdote.

 

 

 

onlinediscountanvils

Maybe CAS believes an 11 year old has greater capacity for making decisions about her own health than a toddler would.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

If you read the judgment, oda, the judge - who is, incidentally, a member of Six Nations as well - found that J.J. lacked the capacity to make that decision herself, then allowed that her mother could still make the decision for the child to be treated with wheatgrass enemas in Florida. 

jas, that this is based on the child's aboriginal heritage not puzzling me at all.  It just makes me incredibly sad that a kid has to die because of it. 

Aristotleded24

onlinediscountanvils wrote:
Maybe CAS believes an 11 year old has greater capacity for making decisions about her own health than a toddler would.

So can someone please explain why an 11 year old is fully capable of making life or death decisions about his or her health while at the same time being inappropriate for an 11 year old who is charged with a crime being tried as an adult or taking on a full-time job in the adult workforce?

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Or just getting their nose pierced?

6079_Smith_W

Aristotleded24 wrote:

So can someone please explain why an 11 year old is fully capable of making life or death decisions about his or her health while at the same time being inappropriate for an 11 year old who is charged with a crime being tried as an adult or taking on a full-time job in the adult workforce?

Maybe because the law is supposed to be a shield, not a sword.

Plus it is one thing to make a decision to do something, another to refuse having something done to you.

 

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

That shield is pretty damned faulty in these two cases. Life threatening situation is allowed to remain life threatening.

6079_Smith_W

Yeah, but the counter argument is a person being allowed to decide what she does and does not want to have done to her body. It is not simple at all.

 

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

At 11 years old, in this situation? Let's not play silly buggers with the politics of choice. This is not about a child choosing, it's about the parents' right to choose to allow their child to die when she doesn't have to. J.J. Is not choosing, her mother is.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

OK, but to be fair, if what she does want to to have done to her body is just a nose piercing then why the five year wait?

If a nose ring turns out to be a bad idea, it'll grow back in in a couple of years.  That's the worst case scenario.

6079_Smith_W

Timebandit wrote:
At 11 years old, in this situation? Let's not play silly buggers with the politics of choice.

Silly buggers? You might want to direct that at the various parties who actually wrote the law and made the decisions in this case

Glad you are so absolutely sure what should be done in this case, because while I recognize the same problem you do, I see serious issues on both sides.

Sure 11 is young, but not that young.

 

onlinediscountanvils

Timebandit wrote:

If you read the judgment, oda, the judge - who is, incidentally, a member of Six Nations as well - found that J.J. lacked the capacity to make that decision herself

I'm aware of that. What I'm not aware of is whether that view is shared by the CAS (although it might be). And if not, I can understand why they might not have a 'one size fits all' approach in these matters. It's not hard for me to imagine that an 11 year old might understand the gravity of her medical situation better than someone one seventh her age.

 

Aristotleded24 wrote:

So can someone please explain why an 11 year old is fully capable of making life or death decisions about his or her health while at the same time being inappropriate for an 11 year old who is charged with a crime being tried as an adult or taking on a full-time job in the adult workforce?

For the same reason why I think an 11 year old should be allowed to decide to begin hormone therapy or have an abortion.

Pondering

jas wrote:

swallow wrote:

Meg, do you feel the discussion here is in line with the aboriginal forum's mandate? 

A question that has been asked here already and has still not been addressed. If the mods are not going to moderate this forum according to its mandate, should Babble really have an Aboriginal Issues forum?

There are competing rights. For other children the court would step in and save the child's life. Because she is FN, she will be "allowed" to die. I think there are universal human rights which supercede nation rights. I think it is immoral for Canada to deny this little girl life-saving treatment because she is FN. Isn't that racist?

I get the opposing argument, that we should respect the autonomy of FN people which means not imposing decisions on them but it is not as clear cut as you want to make it out to be.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

onlinediscountanvils wrote:

Timebandit wrote:

If you read the judgment, oda, the judge - who is, incidentally, a member of Six Nations as well - found that J.J. lacked the capacity to make that decision herself

I'm aware of that. What I'm not aware of is whether that view is shared by the CAS (although it might be). And if not, I can understand why they might not have a 'one size fits all' approach in these matters. It's not hard for me to imagine that an 11 year old might understand the gravity of her medical situation better than someone one seventh her age..


It isn't that she is more capable than a toddler to understand, it's whether she is fully competent to make such a decision. The judge felt she wasn't, so it's not really a case of what degree. In both instances, the decision was coming from the parent. White and aboriginal are given two standards of protection. ETA: Neither abortion nor hormone treatment will result in the 11 year old's death.

onlinediscountanvils

Timebandit wrote:
onlinediscountanvils wrote:

Timebandit wrote:

If you read the judgment, oda, the judge - who is, incidentally, a member of Six Nations as well - found that J.J. lacked the capacity to make that decision herself

I'm aware of that. What I'm not aware of is whether that view is shared by the CAS (although it might be). And if not, I can understand why they might not have a 'one size fits all' approach in these matters. It's not hard for me to imagine that an 11 year old might understand the gravity of her medical situation better than someone one seventh her age..

It isn't that she is more capable than a toddler to understand, it's whether she is fully competent to make such a decision. The judge felt she wasn't, so it's not really a case of what degree. In both instances, the decision was coming from the parent. White and aboriginal are given two standards of protection. ETA: Neither abortion nor hormone treatment will result in the 11 year old's death.

I'm not referring to the judge, I'm referring to the CAS, which is the common party in these two cases. They decided to intervene in one case, but not the other. I'm suggesting that maybe age and maturity are the reasons for the differences in approach, rather than it being because one family being FN while the other is not.

Aristotleded24

[url=http://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/jesse/2015/01/makayla-cancer-and-colonia..., cancer, and colonialism[/url]

Far too much for me to excerpt. I'm interested to hear thoughts on this article.

swallow swallow's picture

It's all interesting, but I have to excerpt this one paragrpah for the moment: 

Quote:
While Makayla died after stopping treatment, there are far more Indigenous people who die from being denied access to treatment and prevention -- and this sparks far less fury from the mainstream media. "Racism can doom sick patients," could have been the headline after Brian Sinclair died in a Winnipeg ER, denied treatment for 34 hours. "Our institutions could not find the backbone to protect this community," could be written about the Ontario government's refusal to support the community of Grassy Narrows against mercury poisoning. "Cancer rates in Fort Chipewyan beggar belief," should be included in every discussion of the tar sands.

jas

I would excerpt this part:

As Laurie Meijer Drees writes in Healing Stories: Stories from Canada's Indian Hospitals, "As early as 1914, sections of the Indian Act allowed the government to apprehend patients by force if they did not seek medical treatment." This forced treatment denied traditional medicine and included segregated facilities ("Indian hospitals") that medically experimented on Indigenous people. The same happened in residential schools that stole Indigenous children from their communities -- a practice that continues today through other means.

The denial of traditional knowledge included imposing a highly restricted view of healthcare ("Western medicine") that reduces health to an isolated individual and pharmaceutical intervention -- ignoring social, economic, environmental and cultural factors that determine health and the accessibility and effectiveness of pharmaceuticals.....  But a biological reductionist view came to dominate capitalist healthcare -- undermining the potential of its own treatments, by ignoring broader factors that shape people's susceptibility to illness and their potential to access and benefit from medication.

But the article doesn't go far enough for me. The right to refuse a treatment, in "J.J."'s case a decision made by the caregivers/next of kin, should be a fundamental right for anyone. The right to die, the right to accept consequences, should also be a fundamental right for all people because it essentially is the right to choice in all matters involving one's own body. The state does not own Makayla's or "J.J.'s" or our bodies. If we start intervening because they're children and we don't trust that the parents are making caring decisions for their children (and that might be a valid area for court determination) then where are we going to draw the line in the future.

While chemotherapy has proven itself in short-term treatment of leukemia (there is an acknowledged absence of data regarding long-term outcomes) this doesn't mean we can impose this standard of care just because it's a "standard of care." To do so would indeed impose our world view on that of another. Different people, faith based or not, have different philosophies and approaches to health, illness, life and death. The Hippocratic imperative of 'life above all else' is not necessarily correct or appropriate. Do you think Makayla or her parents didn't understand the risks? I think they did.

jas

And how did the idiotic comment at the bottom of the article garner 11 votes... on rabble? Unbelievable. I guess this partly explains why the mods here haven't shut this thread down yet.

Aristotleded24

jas wrote:
While chemotherapy has proven itself in short-term treatment of leukemia (there is an acknowledged absence of data regarding long-term outcomes)

In the long term, leukemia patients who use chemotherapy end up dead. In the long term, non-leukemia patients end up dead.

What's your point?

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

jas, there have been many studies of adult survivors of childhood cancers, including ALL.  There are ongoing health effects, as well as psychological effects, from having had the disease and the treatment.  However, I'm sure we can agree that these are preferable to DEAD.

Pondering

jas wrote:

The right to refuse a treatment, in "J.J."'s case a decision made by the caregivers/next of kin, should be a fundamental right for anyone. The right to die, the right to accept consequences, should also be a fundamental right for all people because it essentially is the right to choice in all matters involving one's own body. The state does not own Makayla's or "J.J.'s" or our bodies. If we start intervening because they're children and we don't trust that the parents are making caring decisions for their children (and that might be a valid area for court determination) then where are we going to draw the line in the future.

We already do that. In life threatening situations Jehovah Witness parents are overridden by the courts to allow doctors to give their children blood transfusions. We draw the line when children are going to die if their parents deny them medical treatment.

The state doesn't override parents based on ownership of children. Parents don't own children either. Children are human beings with rights of their own.

NorthReport

We are way over 360 posts here.  

rhubarb

MegB wrote:

Rhubarb, you have been warned, yet you continue to bait and attack. Welcome to your babble-free weekend.

Funny, I read,"Welcome to your babble-free weekend." as both baiting and attacking.  LOL

I appreciated the Rabble article linked to by Aristotle.   I wish that I saw that respect for the First Nations peoples here in the Aboriginal Issues and Culture Forum.

jas

Timebandit wrote:
  However, I'm sure we can agree that these are preferable to DEAD.

For someone else, I wouldn't know. I can only -- ever -- make such a determination for myself.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

You aren't a child, jas.

onlinediscountanvils

Aristotleded24 wrote:

[url=http://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/jesse/2015/01/makayla-cancer-and-colonia..., cancer, and colonialism[/url]

Far too much for me to excerpt. I'm interested to hear thoughts on this article.

 

I think it's one of the more incisive things I've read since post #41:

Maysie wrote:

Yes, parents have the right to make medical decisions on behalf of their minor children. Are these decisions sometimes terrible decisions (in the opinion of others)? Yes. But some parents also physically and sexually abuse their children. And until they get caught and stopped, they continue to do so.

What's fascinating about this sad case is that Canadian settler judgement and the colonial ("We know what's best for you") mindset sure are selective when deciding what is and isn't a "horrible problem" in the Aboriginal community.

No potable water? Yawn.

High rates of suicide in remote communities? Whatevs.

Mouldy trailers for housing? Who gives a shit.

Schools and community centres in need of drastic repairs? Clearly they have mis-managed their community and need no intervention.

An individual family making a medical decision about their child? However much anyone inside or outside the community approves or disapproves? Oh My God, sound the alarm! Alert the media! Go to court! Crisis! Crisis!

In this case, having settlers, with their/our colonial mindsets, bicker over a single issue, a single example, is very typical, historical, hypocritical and pretty gross.

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