“They are a poor excuse as parents.”
These were just some of the comments left under the photos of David and Collet Stephan after the Canadian government opened its trial against the couple, charging them of failing to provide the necessities of life to their 19-month-old-son Ezekiel leading to his death on March 18, 2012.
From The Washington Post:
“According to prosecutors, David and Collet stubbornly refused to take their sick son to see a doctor, instead giving him home remedies such as smoothies containing hot pepper, ginger root, horseradish, onion and apple cider vinegar. Even after warnings from a family friend who is a nurse, the anti-vaccine couple took him to a naturopath for echinacea — an herb believed to stimulate the immune system — instead of to a doctor for an exam.
It was only when Ezekiel began to have trouble breathing that they rushed him to a hospital, prosecutors said.
By then, it was too late.
Ezekiel died from bacterial meningitis and empyema, two conditions routinely cured with antibiotics, a medical examiner told the court last week, according to the Lethbridge Herald.
If convicted, the parents could spend up to five years in prison.”
This case is but one example of the recent resurgence in vaccination debates, making a case for vaccination and modern medicine. In a poll conducted by the Pew Research Center, 83% of adults say the measles vaccine is safe for healthy children, while only 9% think it is unsafe. What is your opinion on this issue in the United States? To what extent can the free speech and exercise clause be upheld in the face of national health and security? Should vaccines be compulsory?