Seven years after my post in Stockholm on the question on who has the right to decide on life or death, Charlie Gard’s case has made the headlines, at least here in Great Britain.
Charlie suffers from mitochondrial depletion syndrome which affects the cells’ ability to generate energy. Specialists at the hospital say he has irreversible brain damage and should “die with dignity”.
Doctors at Great Ormond Street where Charlie is kept in a ventilator, have come up with ways to demonstrate brain damage by: some measurements of the skull, (which remind us of to those used in Uppsala for race biology theories and supporting the aryan race supremacy) , and claim the baby’s head is not growing because his brain damage is so advanced. The parents dispute this since they had measured the circumference of Charlie’s head and found it had grown by two centimetres.
Growing or not, it does not seem a very scientific way to show brain damage. I believe the discussion has to focus on other more important issues that arise, as in who decides if the child may live?. Jewish law considers life sacred, but Jewish ethics are not contemplated here, even if they should, since for many other issues, the Bible’s laws have been regarded universally valid.
The Gard’s, are in the hands of the legal system and have already lost legal battles in the Court of Appeal, Supreme Court and the European Court of Human Rights.
Now again we face a case of; “limitation of tratment” since, it is in the hands of others than the parents, even if they want to give to Charlie a therapy that could help him abroad. The specialists in the UK should humbly consider if there is the slightest possibility of those cells to produce energy and bring him to live without any external aid, that he should get the chance, we do not know that for sure, but he is a living being and science should accept the fact that it has been given a window to embrace and explore instead of terminating without at least trying the therapeutic treatments that exist, because at the end that is what science is all about, not to give up.
May the Almighty have mercy on Charlie since He is at the end the Only One that can grant or take away life.
We do pray Charlie will get the right treatment to be able to enjoy the good things on this earth, which is what we all at the end should strive for.
The parents are not able to continue their fight for Charlie, since the experimental treatment that was offered would not work anymore, after scans demonstrated the brain damage he has suffered is to advanced. A legal battle that ended for little Charlie, in his parents words “he accomplished more than many adults in a life span”. May he now die at home in peace, last request they made.
And may he be received in Heaven as the “Little warrior”, he was, with certainly a purpose in his almost a year with us here on earth.
Addendum: Charlie passed away peacefully the 28th of July just a few days before his first birthday, may he rest in peace and comfort granted to the parents after suffering with their child or probably even more.