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The Boy Who's Refusing Chemo

Thirteen-year-old Daniel Hauser and his mom are probably headed to Mexico if they aren't already there. That's the word from police in Minnesota who are searching for the pair.

Daniel was diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma in January, writes the Minnesota Star-Tribune. He underwent one round of chemotherapy for the treatable cancer before he and his parents decided to end his treatments. Instead, they turned to alternative medicine to treat Daniel's cancer.

In court, Daniel told a judge that he does not want to undergo more chemotherapy and radiation. X-rays show that the cancer is still eating away at Daniel's body, prompting the court to order the Hausers to resume chemotherapy.

In issuing the order, Judge John Rodenberg wrote: "Daniel Hauser is an extremely polite and pleasant young man. While he is 13 years of age, Daniel is unable to read. ... He lacks the ability to give informed consent to medical procedures."

And so, the mom and boy hunt is on. Yesterday, the FBI joined the search. Should the Hausers be found, Daniel will be placed in foster care and be forced to resume chemotherapy and radiation. And he'll have a good chance at living. If he's not found, he'll likely die from cancer.

Daniel's case isn't the first of its kind. Courts have interceded in cases like his in Virginia, Texas and Utah. The question, though, is should they? When should the courts intercede into family life and death decisions and when should families be able to make those decisions for themselves -- even when they may not make sense to many of us?

By Stacey Garfinkle |  May 22, 2009; 7:00 AM ET  | Category:  Health
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Comments


live and let live - that's our motto. you and your crazy family can live any lifestyle you feel like living and i could care less. have 4 wives if you feel like it. doesn't have anything to do with me.

but this is complete BS. total child endangerment/abuse/murder.
find them and lock up the mom and get the kid into chemo.

Posted by: interestingidea1234 | May 22, 2009 8:59 AM | Report abuse

Okay, I'll play devil's advocate here.

Two words: Terri Schiavo.

If the state of Minnesota can force Daniel Hauser to have medical treatment despite his legal guardian's wishes, why couldn't the state of Florida force Terri Schiavo to have medical treatment (namely, food) despite her legal guardian's wishes?

Yes, the "quality of life" of the two would have been very different upon successful completion of the medical treatment. Is that the only reason why you would believe the cases are different?

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | May 22, 2009 9:07 AM | Report abuse

Why has the Mother decided to do this? Has anyone hear her reasons?

Posted by: sunflower571 | May 22, 2009 9:16 AM | Report abuse

why can't he read? is he developmentally delayed? Or one of those unschooled kids?

Regarding state intereference, the issue for me is pain management. That's all. If there is evidnce the child is in pain and the parents are not doing or are unsuccessful at stopping the pain, then the state should have the right to step in and require some sort of treatment that will reduce pain-- if there are various pain remedies available, the parents should have the right to select which of the pain relievers should be administered. If they don't then a doctor should make the decision.

I don't want to see kids in pain when it's not necessary. But parental rights have to respected. I think the authorities are going to far in this situation because there is no evidnece the child is in pain.

Posted by: captiolhillmom | May 22, 2009 9:19 AM | Report abuse

I find it really difficult to comprehend how a parent could justify not doing everything possible to save their child's life.
I also wonder why this 13 year old boy can't read sufficiently to give informed consent. This makes me wonder whether the parents are uneducated and perhaps therefore placing their trust and the life of their child in some goofy "alternative" treatment - Dr. Goode's anyone...

Posted by: VaLGaL | May 22, 2009 9:23 AM | Report abuse

The difference from this case and the Terry Schiavo case is that Daniel Hauser is a child unable(and incapable)of making his own decisions, and that his condition was highly treatable. Terry Schiavo never would have recovered. I have read elsewhere that his condition is 95% curable with this treatment. This case may very well have had a different outcome if the survival rate was not so favorable.

I didn't know, and am quite distrubed, that Daniel Hauser was unable to read.

I do agree that this is an awful situation for all those involved.

Are there any medical professionals out there you can address what happens in situations like these, or how often they occur?

Posted by: legallyred | May 22, 2009 9:27 AM | Report abuse

regardless of any circumstance that i can think of, if you don't seek medical treatment for your child's life-threatening disease you are guilty of negligence and abuse.

13 year-old children do not get to choose what medical treatments they receive.

Posted by: interestingidea1234 | May 22, 2009 9:27 AM | Report abuse

The issue with Terri Schiavo was that her husband and her parents disagreed as to her wishes. Husband said she would refuse a feeding tube, her parents said she wouldn't, thus the court battle ensued. Politicians were the ones who turned it into a "we shouldn't let her die" issue. If she had left a clear, written directive as to her wishes, there would have been no court case.

This is totally different. An illiterate 13-year-old is not in a position to make an informed decision about medical treatment, and I think parents need to give more of a reason for why they are choosing to let their child die than "we don't want to do it." Why? Do they feel the treatment isn't effective? Can they prove it isn't? Do they feel the side effects are so damaging or the treatment is so painful that it's not worth the extra time it would give him?

Even if they have a great reason, the state can, and I think should, intervene in this case. Our society has decided that the state can step in and tell parents what to do. Kids are removed from their parents' care all the time because the government feels the parents are putting their children in danger. I think there's a fair case to be made that a child who is at risk of dying of cancer in this way is at a much greater risk of imminent death than a child who wasn't getting adequate food or was living in unsuitable living conditions, or was even being physically abused. Think about it--this child, unless there's some kind of miracle, will die of this cancer if he isn't treated. Abuse doesn't always kill the child. Harsh, yes, but true. If the parents want their child to die from lack of treatment, I think they owe the state, and society in general, a very clear answer for why they think that's OK.

Posted by: sjneal | May 22, 2009 9:42 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: jezebel3 | May 22, 2009 9:50 AM | Report abuse

First, I do want to state clearly that if this was my child, I'd be knocking down walls to find the best oncologist in the world and getting the best treatment. What the parents are doing here is something I'd never even consider, and I don't claim to understand their reasons.

That being said...I'll continue to play devil's advocate.

Daniel can't read at 13 because of some sort of a learning disability - it's never been clearly explained what kind and what therapies have been applied to overcome it.

Regarding the treatment - while the parents claim to be Catholic, they also claim to belong to the Nemenhah Band, a Native American based group which believes in "alternative medicine." The family stopped the chemo because they believed that the side effects of it violate the "do no harm" requirements of Nemenhah and thus they believe that alternative medicine (herbal supplements, vitamins, ionized water, and other natural alternatives) is a better approach.

The state of Minnesota says that's wrong; alternative medicine is allowed but it can't be the only thing and thus the state wants to force chemo as well.

(In one interview, Daniel's doctor does point out that if they bring him back and he resists/refuses chemo, it's going to be extremely difficult to treat him. The patient has to cooperate and if he doesn't...)

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | May 22, 2009 9:56 AM | Report abuse

for anyone who thinks that this ok, that this family has a right (under religious freedom), to treat their own any way they like:

what if this was your niece, nephew, grandson, granddaughter?

can you imagine your sister letting her daughter die because she believe that her internet research and PH balanced water will save them?

Posted by: interestingidea1234 | May 22, 2009 10:04 AM | Report abuse

How unbelievably tragic. If you read the full text of the transcript of the judge's interview with Daniel, it's clear that he believes he is at no risk whatsoever from his cancer but believes he will die from chemo.

It is unconscionable that his parents have warped the truth to this extent. He clearly trusts that his parents are doing what is best for him and that they know what's going on. I can't imagine what his parents could be thinking. I understand how one parent might end up brainwashed by some splinter group, but both at the same time??

And now he and his mom are on the run, leaving his 7 other siblings (the youngest less than two) at home without a mother. Just tragic from every angle.

Posted by: newslinks1 | May 22, 2009 10:08 AM | Report abuse

interestingidea, It comes down to the fundamental question of who makes decisions on the behalf of minors, the parents or the state? I know the state has a vested interest in the welfare of the child, however the parents are the legal guardians, consider the following:

**In the early 1920s, the United States Supreme Court first reviewed the rights, liberties and obligations of parents to direct the upbringing of their children. Two important decisions, Meyer v. Nebraska and Pierce v. Society of Sisters, established a legacy which was followed by a series of decisions holding that parenting is a fundamental constitutional right, and among "the basic civil rights of man."

The upbringing of children is a parental right the court has ranked as "of basic importance in our society," and is sheltered by the 14th Amendment against the State's unwarranted usurpation, disregard, or disrespect.**

link (site is about defiant teens):
http://www.defiantteenager.com/rights.html

I see both sides in the extreme, I don't want the state to tell me how to raise or treat my child but I also don't want children to die of, what appears to be, neglect.

Posted by: cheekymonkey | May 22, 2009 10:22 AM | Report abuse

i think terri schiavo & karen anne quinlan are the other side of the same sort of coin. i don't think anybody would disagree with the idea that we would get the best treatment we possibly could for our child however, the question becomes when do we want the state to step in. right now, the cure rate for this boy's cancer is 95%. what if the cure rate were only 50% or even 5%. when does it become wrong for the state to force treatment?


there was a case recently in england where the child refused treatment. i forget the specifics but the doctors at the hospital interviewed her & determined that she fully understood the consequences of her decision to forego treatment.

Posted by: quark2 | May 22, 2009 10:24 AM | Report abuse

i don't want the state telling me how to raise my kids. no way, no how.

but i find this to be so extreme that it goes far beyond a right to choose how to raise your kids. they can teach them to believe in voodoo for all i care. but as long as they are minors they should be afforded reasonable protection from themselves and from their parents.

without proper treatment this kid will die.

if the kid was bleeding to death should the police stand on the porch watching through the window as the parents allowed him to die?

i guess i'm going on-and-on because i just don't get the other side to the argument.

Posted by: interestingidea1234 | May 22, 2009 10:29 AM | Report abuse

Interesting, There are consequences to every legal decision concerning parental authority, and the watering down of our rights as parents concerns me. Having said that, children need to be protected when their welfare is at stake, we have countless state and federal agencies that attempt to protect children.

Where I fall on this personally makes no difference, it is how the court has interpreted the situation. I think the judge made the right decision, in this case, but I am braced for a future decisions to go further and further.

What about children being taken away from their parents because they are overweight? School districts suing parents because they won't give their children ADHD medication? Neighbors calling the CPS because children are out playing by themselves at the age of 5? Do you see where I am going with this?

Posted by: cheekymonkey | May 22, 2009 10:43 AM | Report abuse

interestingidea, where do you draw the line? if the cure rate were only 5% & you had to watch the side effects of chemo, the puking, the fevers etc. would you still put your child through that?

Posted by: quark2 | May 22, 2009 10:47 AM | Report abuse

cheeky: and it'll only get worse as we allow the feds to be in total and complete control of our healthcare. *sigh*.

Posted by: atlmom1234 | May 22, 2009 10:48 AM | Report abuse

quark: the question isn't whether any of us would - it's should the state force us to...altho that question is valid, I don't think any of us can make it unless and until we are there. There are many situations where what we thought we would do is very different from what we end up doing.

Posted by: atlmom1234 | May 22, 2009 10:52 AM | Report abuse

"can you imagine your sister letting her daughter die because she believe that her internet research and PH balanced water will save them?"

Can you imagine your sister prohibiting you from ever communicating with her children, and getting a court order forcing you to not try to contact them until they become adults? Do you see that it's your sister's complete and total right to tell you to butt out and keep your opinions to yourself?

I'm not a fan of the Hausers; based on what little I know from reading about this case I don't understand them or anything about what they're doing. On the other hand, I'm really concerned about the "slippery slope" that happens when the state can force treatment on an unwilling teen against his parents' wishes.

As somebody else has pointed out, this seems like a slam-dunk case because the chance of cure is 80-90% with chemo and the chance of death in 5 years is about 95% without it.

But where do you draw the line? What if the chance of cure was only 50%, and the chance of death was 50%? What if the treatment would leave him confined to a wheelchair - could the state force a treatment that would keep him alive and most likely leave him confined to a wheelchair for the rest of his life?

That's why I brought up Terri Schiavo earlier. Once you say it's okay for the state to step in and force treatment for somebody who can't make his/her own decisions (a minor, a comatose person,...) where do you draw the line?

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | May 22, 2009 10:55 AM | Report abuse

cheeky: and it'll only get worse as we allow the feds to be in total and complete control of our healthcare. *sigh*.

Posted by: atlmom1234 | May 22, 2009 10:48 AM


Extremely relevant to today's discussion. The decision on treatment will be up to a gov't employee in a cubicle. It is very scary.

Altmom, Don't "allow" it to happen. Contact your representatives today.

Posted by: cheekymonkey | May 22, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

cheeky: trust me, I do contact them ALL THE TIME. But my rep in the house, let's just say he ALWAYS gets 60-80% of the vote in a primary, and the other side NEVER EVEN puts a candidate up to run against him. So what does he care. He tows the party line, they keep throwing him money, and, well, we have what we have.

It's a little better in the Senate, but the Senators up there well - at least with this issue, they agree with me.

Posted by: atlmom1234 | May 22, 2009 11:54 AM | Report abuse

IMO this is individualism run aground. Dad was one TV saying, 'well we really just want light chemo treatments.' Sometimes things aren't in our control and this is one of those times.

What if, in some future health situation, the community said, "Nope, no treatment for Daniel - he's simple-minded, will never contribute much, we won't waste the money on the drugs and medical resources?"

Suppose his parents would still be seeking out quacks in Mexico, or would they be screaming bloody murder about the societal neglect of their son?


Since Mom doesn't appear to be real bright I'm hopeful they will find them and get this kid treatment soon.

If these parents had been smarter they would have connected with others who've helped their kids through chemo thearpy and used their health care providers to help this kid get through this without this crisis.

Posted by: RedBird27 | May 22, 2009 11:55 AM | Report abuse

He tows the party line, they keep throwing him money, and, well, we have what we have.

Posted by: atlmom1234 | May 22, 2009 11:54 AM | Report abuse

That should be toes the party line.

Posted by: jezebel3 | May 22, 2009 11:56 AM | Report abuse

Like some others have mentioned, I'm not sure how effective "forced" chemo would be. I find the medical professionals in this case a touch arrogant to suggest a 95 percent cure rate (seeing as someone I know was "successfully" treated with chemo for Hodkins lymphoma only to have it recur within a few years and take his life -- not that he didn't appreciate the extra time!)

As this has played out, it appears unlikely Dan will get the treatment he needs before the cancer advances too far and instead he and his family will suffer horrific stress, FBI pursuit and the likely imprisonment of the mother when they're caught.

Right now, I'd say let them come home and give the Mom immunity from prosecution. Then let's see where things stand with this young man. But forcing medical care sure appears to be a losing battle in this case -- sad but true.

If this were a matter of a short procedure like a blood transfusion for a kid, I'd argue differently but I think we
have to be practical.

Posted by: annenh | May 22, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Altmom, I am glad to hear someone other than me contacts their representatives. Both of my Senators are "toeing the party line" on this but that doesn't keep me from blasting them continually.

BTW, it is indeed "toe" (just googled it)but I always thought it was "tow" as in a boat line. Apparently people use both now and they both make sense.

Posted by: cheekymonkey | May 22, 2009 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Here is an interesting column written by a medical doctor. According to him, there is about a 90% cure rate, and about 95% guarantee he will die without treatment.

http://www.salon.com/env/vital_signs/2009/05/22/daniel_hauser/

The point I found most interesting was, if the parents are trying to save him from the pain and trauma of the chemotherapy, which sounds horrible, they are setting him up for an even more painful and traumatic death from the ravages of the disease.

Posted by: cjbriggs | May 22, 2009 12:22 PM | Report abuse

I don’t understand why it is OK for a 13 year old girl to decide if she wants an abortion (which could kill her) or not, but it is not OK for a 13 year old boy to decide if he wants chemo or not?? Chemo is poisons that will hopefully kill the cancer before it kills the person, so how is it different to force someone to take poison to save their life than it would be to force a terrorist to take poison (that makes you wish you would die like chemo) until he reveals accomplices, targets, etc in order to save many lives???

Posted by: MyView49 | May 22, 2009 12:23 PM | Report abuse

cheeky: Yeah, my DH thinks it's a waste of my time, but he thinks it's better than me getting all mad and making him listen to me. :) So I write missives to newspapers, and representatives, etc - at least the more local ones are a little better, sometimes showing up at local meetings and actually having competition from time to time (though, still, rarely...).

Posted by: atlmom1234 | May 22, 2009 12:30 PM | Report abuse

fr captiolhillmom:

>...But parental rights have to respected. I think the authorities are going to far in this situation because there is no evidnece the child is in pain.

Nobody, except the so-called "mother" has "gone to (sic) far" with Daniel. It's evident that he IS in a LOT of pain, but "mommy" is off on some nutcase chase. Arrest her, put Daniel in the hospital, do NOT allow mommy any contact with him. Does she want to KILL her child? She's sure working towards it.

Posted by: Alex511 | May 22, 2009 12:31 PM | Report abuse

"I don’t understand why it is OK for a 13 year old girl to decide if she wants an abortion (which could kill her) . . .

Speaking of fear-mongering.

Statistics please on the number of women who have died in the last 20 years as a result of an abortion conducted by a licensed provider.

Posted by: anonfornow | May 22, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Arrest her, put Daniel in the hospital, do NOT allow mommy any contact with him. Does she want to KILL her child? She's sure working towards it.


Posted by: Alex511 | May 22, 2009 12:31 PM

Life sure is easy in your black-and-white world.

Posted by: anonfornow | May 22, 2009 12:35 PM | Report abuse

"Arrest her, put Daniel in the hospital, do NOT allow mommy any contact with him. Does she want to KILL her child? She's sure working towards it."

Wow, and I thought *I* was playing devil's advocate.

Tell us, Alex, what the hospital should do when Daniel refuses treatment and tries to break out?

Also tell us, if you please, under what other circumstances a mother should be arrested and her children forced into a hospital involuntarily?

I'm serious - I'm really interested in what your answers might be.

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | May 22, 2009 12:43 PM | Report abuse

anonfornow: "Statistics please on the number of women who have died in the last 20 years as a result of an abortion conducted by a licensed provider."

From the Alan Guttmacher Institute: http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/fb_induced_abortion.html

"The risk of death associated with abortion increases with the length of pregnancy, from one death for every one million abortions at or before eight weeks to one per 29,000 at 16–20 weeks—and one per 11,000 at 21 or more weeks."

So, how many? According to that same page, a total of 1.21 million abortions were performed in the US in 2005. Assuming they were all at the low end of the scale, that would be one or two deaths that year. At the 16-20 week range, that's 41 deaths per year; at the 21 week or more range that would be 110 deaths per year.

Statistics are actually very easy to find if you want them; so I'll leave it as an exercise to you to find the real number - unless, of course, you were just asking a rhetorical question. :-)

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | May 22, 2009 12:51 PM | Report abuse

I'm sorry if I misunderstood the news and the child is in fact in pain. If that is the case, then the parents should be forced to bring the child in for treatment to abate the pain. I can understand a parent fearing that chemo is doing terrible harm and wanting to avoid it (I imagine I would still do it, but hard to say as I've never been in that situation), but I cannot understand a parent seeing their child in pain and doing nothing when there are various treatments offered to abate the pain. Parental authority against the state should not be respected where there is a child in pain.

Posted by: captiolhillmom | May 22, 2009 1:34 PM | Report abuse

13 year old parents are allowed to consent to procedures on their children. Because to not give them this option leaves their children without an "adult" to speak for them. By extension they are (in most states)also allowed to consent to procedures during their pregnancies and in issues involving their sex lives. They are referred to as emancipated minors.It is strange that people are comfortable allowing 13 year olds to consent to stay pregnant (a risky situation check it out in Guttmacher)but not allow them to become unpregnant.

Posted by: babloom | May 22, 2009 1:37 PM | Report abuse

WRT to what I wrote above, although the parents should be forced to provide pain abatement, the parents should nonetheless have authority over the type of treatment selected to abate the pain. But they have to choose something. Otherwise, such neglect is as bad as physical abuse.

Posted by: captiolhillmom | May 22, 2009 1:40 PM | Report abuse

babloom - that's a really weird area you're talking about (bear in mind I'm an engineer, not a lawyer). First of all, the 13 year old did not get to be an "emancipated minor" simply by becoming a parent; although in general getting married would make the 13 year old emancipated.

Nowhere in the US is the legal age of consent as low as 12 (to be a 13 year old parent) and in only one or two states can a 12/13 year old marry under any circumstances.

So the bottom line is that without a whole lot of legal machinations, the 13 year old parent is generally not an "emancipated minor" and is in fact not allowed to consent to, say, taking an aspirin, or getting stitches to close a cut or a cast on a broken leg. Those all require approval of an adult (or a court).

So we have the situation where my hypothetical 14-year old can't take an aspirin without my knowledge and consent, but she can "become unpregnant" without my knowledge and consent. Consistent? I think not.

But we should probably wander off of that topic or we're gonna go downhill real fast.

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | May 22, 2009 1:53 PM | Report abuse

however, armybrat, and first poster of this particular topic:

Perhaps having an abortion would 'kill' a woman...but, um, isn't childbirth MUCH more dangerous for a woman? As in, women die at higher rates from childbirth than from an abortion?

Posted by: atlmom1234 | May 22, 2009 2:25 PM | Report abuse

but, if the kid is saying he doesn't want treatment, then it's not like oh, the boy wants it but the parents don't.
If he doesn't want treatment, as said above, then he's unlikely to do well. Don't 'they' say that one of the best ways to get well is to see yourself as well? To have 'faith' in the treatment? To want it? To have a positive outlook?

If he's going to go thru chemo kicking and screaming, it's unlikely to be helpful. And if that's the case, I'd rather use our rather scarce health care dollars on treatments for patients who want them.

Posted by: atlmom1234 | May 22, 2009 2:48 PM | Report abuse

"Perhaps having an abortion would 'kill' a woman...but, um, isn't childbirth MUCH more dangerous for a woman? As in, women die at higher rates from childbirth than from an abortion?"

Well, now, let's see what we can find here (dang, these here Interwebs is really cool fer findin' information, ya know? :-)

According to WHO, in 2005 the maternal death rate for US women is 11 per 100,000 births - it's been skyrocketing lately. Let's see, do a little math - it's pretty close to the same death rate as for late-term abortions; much higher than for early term.

(It's been suggested that the skyrocketing US maternal death rate is closely related to increasing maternal obesity, with an increased number of c-sections also contributing. "Better reporting" may also be a factor, it says.)

But this is all apropos of what, other than giving me yet another chance to play with Wolfram|Alpha?

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | May 22, 2009 2:52 PM | Report abuse

armybrat: nothing, except that it's a friday on a long weekend. And someone threw some red herring that had nothing to do with the discussion into the mix, and, well, we've got nothign better to do...;)

Posted by: atlmom1234 | May 22, 2009 2:57 PM | Report abuse

and, actually, wouldn't increasing rate of maternal death be do to the increase in the age at which people are having babies? I have NO IDEA if that's the case. But i guess it's possible.

Posted by: atlmom1234 | May 22, 2009 3:00 PM | Report abuse

I've been thinking a lot about this case, and what bothers me the most is that this kid's parents seem to be feeding him false information about chemo and his chances at surviving the cancer without it.

If he had all of the information and really understood it, then I'd (reluctantly and sadly) say he should be allowed to refuse treatment. But it sounds like this kid is thoroughly uneducated and has been given bad "facts" by his parents. In those circumstances, I'm uncomfortable with letting him die.

Several posters have asked "where do you draw the line?" on government forcing treatment of a child over a parent's objections. I'd say once the chances of successful treatment approach a roll of the dice. But here, where the child's chances of survival are overwhelmingly high with treatment, and overwhelmingly low without, it seems like an easy call.

Posted by: newsahm | May 22, 2009 3:02 PM | Report abuse

Altmom, Excellent, I do very much the same things and it is cathartic. I am very involved in a number of community groups, my local political party and I also write the LTE to my local papers ont he issues that are important to me, both local and national. Some call it a waste of time, I call it exercising my rights!

Posted by: cheekymonkey | May 22, 2009 3:03 PM | Report abuse

cheeky: it's good to see I'm not the only crazy person out there! :)

Posted by: atlmom1234 | May 22, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Lawyer Wannabee School is closed for the day. Thank God.

Posted by: jezebel3 | May 22, 2009 3:11 PM | Report abuse

So . . . all you people going on about how great and important it is to talk with your member of congress, do you realize that the residents of Washignton DC do not enjoy this right?

There is a bill ever . . . so . . . slowly making it's way through congress that would provide this right to such residents. I hope the rest of America could take the time ask their Congressional representatives what he or she is doing to help get this right that you so enjoy to the Americans living in DC.

I wasn't going to say anything, but this is a DC paper dang it-- it's like you all are just rubbing our noses in it!

Thanks!

Posted by: captiolhillmom | May 22, 2009 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Not that we're getting WAAAYYY off topic or anything, here. :-)

"Lawyer Wannabee School is closed for the day."

No it's not. :-)

"There is a bill ever . . . so . . . slowly making it's way through congress that would provide this right to such residents. I hope the rest of America could take the time ask their Congressional representatives what he or she is doing to help get this right that you so enjoy to the Americans living in DC."

Well, you see, there's this thing called the Constitution of the US that says Representatives and Senators come from the STATES. It also says that the district constituting the national capital IS NOT A STATE.

So I suspect that if said bill ever passes Congress it will immediately be challenged, and then we'll all wait years while the Supreme Court figures out what the Constitution means.

You want voting representation? I'm not opposed in principle - just to the mechanism. Change the Constitution; either make it say that DC is indeed a state or that Representatives and Senators come from States and DC. But please don't try to pass a bill that pretends the Constitution doesn't say what it says.

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | May 22, 2009 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Not that we're getting WAAAYYY off topic or anything, here. :-)

"Lawyer Wannabee School is closed for the day."

No it's not. :-)

"There is a bill ever . . . so . . . slowly making it's way through congress that would provide this right to such residents. I hope the rest of America could take the time ask their Congressional representatives what he or she is doing to help get this right that you so enjoy to the Americans living in DC."

Well, you see, there's this thing called the Constitution of the US that says Representatives and Senators come from the STATES. It also says that the district constituting the national capital IS NOT A STATE.

So I suspect that if said bill ever passes Congress it will immediately be challenged, and then we'll all wait years while the Supreme Court figures out what the Constitution means.

You want voting representation? I'm not opposed in principle - just to the mechanism. Change the Constitution; either make it say that DC is indeed a state or that Representatives and Senators come from States and DC. But please don't try to pass a bill that pretends the Constitution doesn't say what it says.

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | May 22, 2009 3:26 PM | Report abuse


I'm giving a copy of this crap to my date tonight as an example of how NOT to get laid. Where do these a-holes come from?

Posted by: jezebel3 | May 22, 2009 3:37 PM | Report abuse

the constitution also doesn't say that DC residents are subject to federal taxation, but we are anyway.

Posted by: captiolhillmom | May 22, 2009 3:48 PM | Report abuse

oh, and by the way, DC is treated as a de facto state for many grant purposes-- lots of federal grants are limited to the states, but then you read the fine print in the regulations and DC is included as eligible for such grants.

Also, since DC wasn't even founded until a couple decades after the Constitution was signed, it's hard to fault the framers for neglecting to get into the particulars about DC voting rights.

Posted by: captiolhillmom | May 22, 2009 3:55 PM | Report abuse

jezebel - "Over? Did you say "over"? Nothing is over until we decide it is! Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? Hell no!"

captiolhillmom - "Also, since DC wasn't even founded until a couple decades after the Constitution was signed, it's hard to fault the framers for neglecting to get into the particulars about DC voting rights."

Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution - explains that the national capitol will be a district, no more than 10 miles square, made up of land ceded by state(s). It was known that it was going to happen, since the framers already learned the dangers of having the capitol be part of a state. All that was left was the politics of figuring out where it was going to be.

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | May 22, 2009 4:17 PM | Report abuse

I'm giving a copy of this crap to my date tonight as an example of how NOT to get laid. Where do these a-holes come from?

Posted by: jezebel3 | May 22, 2009 3:37 PM

anyone believe this chick has a date tonight? anyone? anyone?

I thought not.

Posted by: anonfornow | May 22, 2009 5:08 PM | Report abuse

"You want voting representation? I'm not opposed in principle - just to the mechanism. Change the Constitution; either make it say that DC is indeed a state or that Representatives and Senators come from States and DC. But please don't try to pass a bill that pretends the Constitution doesn't say what it says.

Posted by: ArmyBrat1"

I propose MD take them back!

Posted by: cheekymonkey | May 22, 2009 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Army for the great quotes.

I TOTALLY agree that those who live in the district need some representation, OR they need to not be paying taxes to the feds (the income tax is only the tip of the iceberg of the taxes the feds collect, by the way).

Of course, what you have now is certainly no good.

I had a job offer in the district and the idea of living there, well, with no representation - it was definitely a tough thing to think about. I didn't take the job, in any event, but deciding to live in the district would have been tough.

What 'we' have now (in DC) is unbelievable. I'm unsure why no one has sued to say: we pay taxes, don't we need some representation? And I'm SERIOUS. ACLU, institute for justice...why hasn't this been taken to the supreme court? Isn't that how/why this country was founded in the first place?

Posted by: atlmom1234 | May 22, 2009 10:40 PM | Report abuse

And if they force them to return, and his condition worsens? And if he finds the treatments they seek, and it improves? Who knows him better than his mother? The state has no right to impose it's medical practices upon his unhealthy body...The corruption that exists in this world as a result of unnatural acts probably originated within the state at some point anyway...I say, run...be free...soak up the sun shine, heal your body and mind, be by your mothers love

Posted by: dabrijo | May 23, 2009 12:49 AM | Report abuse

And let the kid read!

Posted by: dabrijo | May 23, 2009 12:51 AM | Report abuse

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