The Associated Press’s Saturday coverage of 23 month-old Alfie Evans’s death at a UK hospital worked almost as mightily to cover up ugly actions and statements made by the UK courts, medical professionals, and even law enforcement as the parties just mentioned worked to ensure that the boy would die.
Saturday night’s story contained the following second paragraph:
Doctors didn’t just “remove his ventilator.” When it was clear that Alfie would live far longer than the mere hours predicted, medical personnel at Alder Hey Hospital chose to starve him.
Ramesh Ponnuru at Bloomberg explained why this move was especially offensive against human dignity:
… He was taken off ventilation, but continued, surprising the doctors, to breathe. He has also been deprived of water and food. …
… There are end-of-life cases that raise genuinely complicated issues …
… This is not one of those cases. There is no allegation that providing the baby with nutrition and hydration, or treatment generally, will cause him suffering — or that extending his life will prolong his suffering, since there is no indication that he has been suffering.
The AP promoted the UK’s Orwellian pretense about its decision-making process:
Translation: Alder Hey Hospital decided to deny Alfie Evans food and water — guaranteeing that he would eventually die — by invoking his “rights,” all the while denying him his fundamental right to life.
The AP also failed to report at least the following offensive statements made by those determined to ensure that Alfie Evans would die.
CNS News reported that Doctor Ranj Singh, an NHS clinical technician, said the following on the UK’s This Morning program Friday:
“Withdrawing life support is not killing someone. It is redirecting care to make them more comfortable and give them the most dignifying life that you can.”
Dr. Singh also said pro-life Alfie supporters outside the Alder Hey Hospital protesting to save Alfie’s life are behaving “disgustingly.”
The main judge hearing the Alfie Evans case was extraordinarily rude to the boy’s legal team:
“I don’t need to be reminded we have a human being. You do not have the moral high ground in this court.”
Steven Ertelt at LifeNews.com wrote Wednesday that “(Judge) Hayden almost seemed to delight in telling everyone in his court room that some doctors essentially think Alfie has no brain left.”
In failing throughout the Alfie Evans human-rights debacle to note the damning background items described in this post, the AP has come off as more interested in defending the NHS than in informing its readers.
That seem especially clear when one learns that the AP reporters involved still found space to cast Alfie’s supporters in a negative light:
LifeNews.com Note: Tom Blumer is president of a training and development company in Mason, Ohio, and is a contributing editor to NewsBusters, where this column originally appeared. Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.