Growth attenuation or the Ashley “treatment” is back in the news and in the blogs again. Only this time the outrage is fundamentally gone. Children are being subjected to this barbarism all over the world, slipping under the legal radar via deception and word play by doctors, lawyers, parents and so-called hospital “ethics committees”.
Parents and the rest defend their position by saying their choices are based on the “lesser of evils”, never once stopping to question why society is, without fail, providing we parents of children with severe disabilities only evils to choose from.
I will not mince words. There is no justification for this mutilation in any arena, moral, legal, health or otherwise. Parents are being lied to. This is no solution. The issues of constant care, lack of support, inaccessibility to the world at large, stress, pain, sexual and physical abuse of our vulnerable children are not addressed by this “treatment”. Cognition, that red herring that “professionals” and public alike seem to fall back on as the appropriate line to draw in the sand is so arbitrary, so narrow as to defy logic and even the most basic understanding of how the brain functions and acquires knowledge and awareness.
We are a stupid people, loathe to study and learn from our collective history. We have burned the witches, strung up the niggers, gassed the kykes, lobotomized the crazies, beat up the faggots all in the name of what was right and good. We look back now, in horror at our primitive ancestors’ sins, and, failing to remove the mote in our own eyes, we're now on to the 'tards. Disability rights…especially the rights of those most severely affected…are the final frontier of civil rights action. Sadly, I suspect a few more generations of dehumanization of our most vulnerable will pass before any sort of serious political action will take place to bring about real change.
And mark my words, the day will come when we see growth attenuation for the misguided barbarism that it is. On that day, be I the age of Methuselah, I will stand up and point my finger vigorously and without qualms say “I told you so.”