Thursday, February 01, 2007

Canada saves 3 Jehovah's witnesses....

A Canadian couple who were Jehovah's witnesses, had sextuplets, but 2 died because the parents refused them blood transfusions. The Canadian government took custody of the remaining 3 babies in order to save their lives.

I am not sure how I feel about this... and I really don't understand how a parent could feel that their child being "violated" was worse than the baby just dying. I'm also curious how someone naturally has 6 babies? First off, people usually only have that many children at once on fertility drugs, are Jehovah's witnesses allowed to take fertility drugs? (I guess since there's nothing in the bible about it, they can.) Or did they just pray a bit too much? And then, at birth, I would assume that a c-section would be ruled out because of the blood-loss in surgery? (Though they could use their own blood.)

This Canadian article explores the reason's Jehovah's witnesses don't take transfusions.


Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

What also interests me about this story is whether the sextuplets were conceived through IVF as it is extremely rare for 6 conceptions to occur naturally simultaneously.

And if they were the result of IVF, how is it that IVF is accepted and blood tranfusions are not?

6:34 PM  
Blogger Aviaa said...

Wait- I'm utterly baffeled. "A Canadian couple who were Jehovah's witnesses, had sextuplets, but 2 died because the parents refused them blood transfusions. The Canadian government took custody of the remaining 3 babies in order to save their lives." Doesn't 2 + 3 = 5, not 6? Perhaps it's just late and I'm missing something...

11:30 PM  
Blogger new.atheist said...

Aviaa, I was thinking it didn't add-up either, but I think that there was one baby that didn't need a transfusion, so that's the 1 that just doesn't get mentioned in the story.

Beep, I guess since god didn't know about IVF... er, I mean since there's nothing about IVF in the bible, the witnesses are ok with it. They're ok with organ transplants, but not blood transfusions because of a few obscure references in the bible to eating blood. I'm guessing if they had a transplant, they'd have their own blood collected for transfusion later.

But, really, who makes up these rules?

10:45 AM  
Anonymous KC said...

I think they were right to remove the children and provide them the medical care they apparently needed. IMHO, no one has the right to practice their beliefs on the bodies of other people, especially children who are incapable of expressing their own desires.

6:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are speaking about what you do not know. Jehovah's witnesses always want the best for their children, there are better alternatives to blood out there and im sure the parents of these babies would have asked for these alternatives to be given, problem is these alternatives are a lot more expensive. However it is has been proven that they are a lot better and faster working than blood. Maybe the fault lies with the hospital for not looking into giving these alternatives. As for having a C-Section they can have those too but again an alternative would be used if there was a lot of blood loss. So i suggest you do your home work and not make assumptions on what you obviously no nothing about.

3:55 AM  
Blogger new.atheist said...

Anon., I do my best to do my homework, and unless you know these people personally, you can't possibly know more than what was in the news either. We all do make assumptions, but generally transfusions are only given when there are no other options.

What alternatives are you referring to? You refer to my lack of knowledge, but you haven't really taught me anything. My understanding is that often when babies require transfusions, almost all of the blood in their body is replaced, and artificial blood cannot be used for this. Can you contradict this?

I believe that everyone wants what's best for their children, and if the parents thought that what was best for their children to die rather than to break what they know as "the law of god", I guess I can't really argue with that.

4:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


This website summarizes 300 United States court cases and lawsuits affecting children of Jehovah's Witnesses, including dozens of cases where the Parents refused to consent to life-saving blood transfusions:


This website summarizes 160 United States court cases and lawsuits filed by Jehovah's Witnesses against Employers:


3:12 PM  

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