Rachel Stoltzfoos got the scoop. She dug out of a report in the (UK) Telegraph the following piece of plutonium:
the judge said the best Alfie’s parents could hope for was to “explore” the options of removing him from intensive care either to a ward, a hospice or his home.
But a doctor treating Alfie, who cannot be named for legal reasons, said that for Alfie to be allowed home would require a “sea change” in attitude from the child’s family, and they feared that in the “worst case” they would try to take the boy abroad.
As Stoltzfoos wrote: “[T]he hospital staff is not interested in what’s best for Alfie, so much as proving a point to the parents, who have an ‘attitude’ they don’t like. …. In sum: The doctors have determined Alfie must die, and he must die in the hospital, unless the parents change their attitude.”
Britain Breaks a Man
And the parents got the message. In a heartbreaking but totally understandable turn of events, Alfie’s father Tom has flown the white flag. Desperate no doubt to spend his son’s last few hours cradling him in his arms, he called on his supporters to disband. As The Mirror reports:
Alfie Evans’s father has made a dramatic u-turn tonight as he praised Alder Hey staff hours after claiming doctors “hate” the family and treat them “like criminals.”
Tom Evans has called on ‘Alfie’s Army to ‘stand down’ and asked for supporters to ” allow myself, Kate and Alder Hey to form a relationship, build a bridge and walk across it.”
His ‘final’ statement, which praised staff for ‘dignity and professionalism,’ came after he reportedly spent this afternoon in talks with the hospital.
The 21-year-old had earlier suggested Alfie could live for “months, possibly years,” and vowed to go back to court if today’s meeting “doesn’t go well”.
His comments also came just hours after it was revealed NHS staff in Liverpool have been told to hide their uniforms over fears of abuse.
Protesters across London, Belfast and Washington DC have marched in support of Alfie today after previous backing from Poland and Vatican and Italy.
A Boot Crushing a Human Face, Forever
My heart sank reading that, in just the way it did at the end of 1984. Remember when Winston Smith, after weeks of interrogation and diabolical torture, finally breaks down? When he goes beyond pretending that 2+2=5, and actually comes to believe it? And whatever is left of his mind thinks that it really does “love Big Brother.”
No one could possibly blame Mr. Evans. He has been tested past any point of endurance. The callous British state holds his little son hostage. It will kill him, one way or the other.
But as one of Orwell’s or C.S. Lewis’ villains might have explained to Evans, it doesn’t have to be painful. The child needn’t die of thirst, alone, deprived of his parents. The Catholic priest Evans called doesn’t have to stay barred from the room. I think I can offer a virtual transcript of what was said to poor Mr. Evans:
All of this is quite, quite unnecessary. And indeed, most unfortunate. No one wanted a brouhaha, Mr. Evans. But we can’t have you stirring up this kind of discord. Did you know we had to task local police with monitoring your supporters’ Facebook posts? We actually had to threaten to knock on doors and arrest people. That doesn’t seem very English, now does it? But you left us no choice.
Now all of that could go away, in the blink of an eye. It’s entirely up to you. We’ve drafted a statement. … It’s based on the words of your very own R.C. Bishop of Liverpool. Do you think you know better than he, Mr. Evans? Than the doctors, and judges, and experts whom we’ve assembled at quite considerable cost? Are you really so sure that you’re right? So sure that you’ll abandon Alfie to die alone? It’s your decision, Mr. Evans. You are, as they like to say, a ‘free Englishman.’ Here’s the statement, and a pen.
Land of the Free?
Those of us shocked to see this sick, pornographic abuse of parental rights and human dignity in the nation of Magna Carta ought to remember: George Orwell based his nightmare of tyranny on trends he saw in Britain. His villains are British villains. Likewise when C.S. Lewis wrote That Hideous Strength, he wasn’t depicting the cruelties of German Nazis or Soviet commissars. He drew on the petty tyrants he met in faculty lounges at Cambridge. Tolkien ended The Lord of the Rings with the “scouring of the Shire.” It showed the thuggish side that can emerge when Englishmen get drunk on wicked ideas.
Yes, England was the land of Magna Carta. But also of tyrant King John. Of Thomas More, who chose to die for his conscience. But also of Thomas Cromwell, who raped the nation’s monasteries, closed all its charities, and gave the stolen gold to Henry VIII to squander in just one (failed) war against the French. In legend, it’s the land of Robin Hood, but also of Guy of Gisborne. The same schools that produced a Winston Churchill churned out a string of Stalinist spies.
When British voters chose Brexit, they demanded their freedom and sovereignty. Ordinary men like Tom Evans voted for it in the millions. And their outraged elites have spent every moment since then trying to subvert or reverse their decision. Likewise, Americans by a whisker chose Donald Trump. And our elites, minus the powdered wigs and slightly more archaic language, have spent the past year and half doing the same.
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It Can Happen Here. It’s Happening Now.
In our land, the California district attorney tries to imprison pro-life reporters. That state’s legislature plans to censor biblical speech. In New York, sidewalk counselors fight gag rules so they can witness outside abortion clinics. In Austin, the Texas Association of Business helped defeat a bill protecting pastors from prison for refusing same-sex weddings. It’s not that it can happen here. It’s happening here. As you read this.
Ronald Reagan famously said that liberty is always just one generation away from extinction. Let me solemnly say it: Now we are just one presidential election away. That is how drunk with power our enemies are.
They don’t just want to beat us. They feel the need to break us. And as the case of Tom and Alfie Evans shows us, they really will stop at nothing.
He has been Press Secretary to pro-life Louisiana Governor Mike Foster, and a reporter and editor at Success magazine and Investor’s Business Daily, among other publications. His essays, poems, and other works have appeared in First Things, The Weekly Standard, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, USA Today, FrontPage Magazine, The American Conservative, The South Carolina Review, Modern Age, The Intercollegiate Review, Commonweal, and The National Catholic Register, among other venues. He has contributed to American Conservatism: An Encyclopedia and The Encyclopedia of Catholic Social Thought. From 2000-2004 he served as Senior Editor of Faith & Family magazine and a reporter at The National Catholic Register. During 2012 he was editor of Crisis.
He is author, co-author, or editor of eleven books, including Wilhelm Ropke: Swiss Localist, Global Economist, The Grand Inquisitor (graphic novel) and The Race to Save Our Century. He was editor of the Intercollegiate Studies Institute’s guide to higher education, Choosing the Right College and Collegeguide.org, for ten years, and is also editor of Disorientation: How to Go to College Without Losing Your Mind.