Sunday, June 8, 2008

Parents face charges for raising their daughter vegan

No, it's not some anti-hippie crusade. The girl has rickets and the bone density of an 80 year old.

From the UK Times Online:

A 12-YEAR-OLD girl in Scotland brought up by her parents on a strict vegan diet has been admitted to hospital with a degenerative bone condition said to have left her with the spine of an 80-year-old woman.

Doctors are under pressure to report the couple to police and social workers amid concerns that her health and welfare may have been neglected in pursuit of their dietary beliefs.

The girl, who has been fed on a strict meat and dairy-free diet from birth, is said to have a severe form of rickets and to have suffered a number of fractured bones.

The condition is caused by a lack of vitamin D, which is needed to absorb calcium and is found in liver, oily fish and dairy produce. Decalcification leads to the bones becoming brittle and can cause curvature of the spine.

If some idiotic nitwits want to put themselves in danger by following a philosophy which denies human nature, great. Especially if they don't have health insurance and are forced to bear the cost of their own idiocy.

However, forcing your children to follow such lunacy is child abuse. These parents have wrecked their child's body in pursuit of their inane devotion.

There seems to be some support on both sides of the pond for a reasonable course of action:

Jonathan Sher, head of policy at Children in Scotland, an umbrella group representing 400 organisations, said social workers should intervene where a vegan diet was putting children’s health at risk.

Last year, an American vegan couple were given a life sentence for starving their six-week-old baby to death. In 2001 two vegans from west London were sentenced to three years’ community rehabilitation after they admitted starving their baby to death.

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