Alfie Evans is a little boy struggling for his life while his parents wage a battle to give him a chance not to be cured – yet – but just to survive one more day. Odds are overwhelmingly against him, but the odds were overwhelmingly against every single person who has ever accomplished something great or unexpected. The real tragedy in this sordid tale is that illness and death aren’t the biggest villains the family must overcome; that role has been taken by Great Britain’s National Health Service and the British courts, both of whom have decided Alfie’s life isn’t worth saving.
Simply having government officials tell parents their child won’t get the medical treatment that universal healthcare is purported to provide to everyone – EVERYONE – would be bad enough. Alfie’s story, however, much like Charlie Gard’s last year, is much darker. Not only have officials at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital, where Alfie has been on a ventilator for most of the last year, petitioned to end his treatment at their facility, they’ve demanded the courts prevent him from receiving treatment anywhere in the world.
When the courts upheld Alden Hey’s decision to remove Alfie from life support, Pope Francis met with the Tom Evans, the child’s father, and publicly declared Alfie should be given every opportunity to live. In addition, the Italian government granted citizenship to Alfie to guarantee his continued care. Government officials also demanded he be transported to the Vatican hospital for treatment.
The British government responded by placing guards inside the hospital and threatening Tom Evans and Kate James, Alfie’s mother, with arrest if he is removed from the facility. Doctors claim that ending the child’s life is the only humane treatment left. For some, their assertion has a ring of compassion and reason to it. For those who still in possession of their humanity and their ability to think for themselves, however, the NHS and the British courts show the sinister, mostly hidden reality of socialized medicine and socialism in general.
Right off the bat, the government officials have demonstrated just how little parents have to say about how their children are raised. Instead of a grieving mother and father being allowed to make the best decision for their son based on their unique situation, barristers, judges, and medical bureaucrats have replaced the family unit with regulations and rulings. Even George Orwell would be awe-struck at such tyranny.
Worse yet, the utopian healthcare system of Great Britain, so lauded by American socialized healthcare advocates, looks and sounds more and more like the SPCA. Got a child who’s suffering? Well, let’s just go ahead and put it out of its misery. We can’t stand to see the poor thing suffer, and it’s really just too expensive to give it the proper care.
Those who think this scenario seems far fetched should ask themselves how they would react if a government official came into their infant’s hospital room and told them treatment would stop since death was the best option for everyone involved. Then, those same people need to sit still and be quiet until they come up with a truly honest answer. Most will never be able to acknowledge one.
The push for universal healthcare in the United States has gained steam since a Democratic Congress marched in lockstep to pass President Obama’s (Un)Affordable Healthcare Act. Alfie Evans and Charlie Gard should be a part of every single conversation about how our medical care will be delivered and accessed in the future. Our health, our lives, and, above all, our children are not sacrifices to made at the altar of socialism.
Roy Jeffords is an author, ghost writer, Constitutional conservative, and curmudgeon-at-large. A graduate of The Citadel, the Military College of South Carolina, he lives in Texas with his wife and their two boxers. Find him on Facebook at Roy Jeffords, Twitter @royjeffords, Instagram royjeffords, and at www.royjeffords.com. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.