1/06/2007

The Ashley Treatment

One of the best "ethics" blogs I have come across. Check out Ashley Treatment. The blog is maintained by parents of Ashley X, a girl child with static encephalopathy. Her parents decided to check her growth, i.e., her height and weight using hormonal treatment. And as expected, the e-moralists have showered them with insults and slander denouncing them as lazy cruel parents who have spayed and stunted her. Remember all the rants by these moralists during the Terri Schiavo incident ?



I read the complete Ashley blog and must admit was quite impressed with its depth and rationality rather than emotional outburst. The only place I felt her parents were becoming a bit defensive was when they state
A fundamental and universal misconception about the treatment is that it is intended to convenience the caregiver; rather, the central purpose is to improve Ashley’s quality of life.
I personally would have no problem even if the intention was to convenience the caregiver and to improve Ashley's life with an equal weightage. Regarding the debates started on this issue, here is what her parents have to say:
We want to avoid sensationalism or philosophical debates about what we did and why we did it. We’d rather care for and enjoy Ashley than get into endless debates. In our opinion, only parents with special-needs children are in a position to fully relate to this topic. Unless you are living the experience, you are speculating and you have no clue what it is like to be the bedridden child or their caregivers. Furthermore, in the case of the female aspects of the treatment, women are in a better position to relate to these aspects and the benefits for which they are intended.
A very frank and sensible position to take. If you enjoy reading stuff on bioethics etc, I strongly recommend reading the complete Ashley Treatment blog.

On a lighter note, the complete South Park episode on heaven, hell, Sony PSP and Terri Schiavo can be seen by clicking on the video below. It won't last long. So see it soon :)