A 14-month-old Italian baby, who was reportedly fed a vegan diet, has been removed from his parents after arriving at a Milan hospital seriously malnourished.
The baby, whose name has not been released, was taken to hospital by his grandparents a week ago and doctors were shocked to see the poor state of the baby’s health and a body weight only just slightly higher than a newborn.
Blood tests revealed the child, who was born in May 2015, was severely malnourished with calcium levels barely adequate to survive. The baby was also suffering from a congenital heart condition which required emergency surgery. He is now recovering in hospital.
“This forces us to reflect on uncommon feeding regimes, even if in this case it was complicated by a cardiac malformation,” said Luca Bernardo, director of paediatrics at the hospital that took him in.
“It is not a problem to choose different or unusual kinds of nutrition and we certainly do not want to enter into a discussion of the merits of the decision. But since birth, the baby should have had support in this case with calcium and iron.”
The hospital immediately reported the case to police and prosecutors opened an inquiry and ordered the baby to be formally removed from his parents.
Our society is totally screwed when we have parents thinking that their babies are born as exclusively plant eaters. The problem is that we dare not criticise people’s life choices because we might be considered some kind of -ist.
These parents were systematically depriving their child of essential nutrients for a healthy body. Worse, they are so invested in this choice that the government is having to consider having to take the baby off them as they can not be relied on to provide it with the necessities of life.
How is this any different from parents who don’t provide a safe home? Healthy food? Shoes, clothing and educational support?
Why is the “right” to be a parent the same as being able to abuse your children, in many ways through all kinds of deprivation, more important than the child’s rights to a healthy, safe and happy life?
And no, the state shouldn’t step in and be the parents.
There should be consequences, however, for idiots who make babies they can’t look after. If it was a dog, they’d be banned legally from having any further animals in their care.
But, if it is their own baby…