Creationist Faith-Killing Parents to be Sentenced

We know you haven’t forgotten the gruesome case of Herbert and Catherine Schaible, the Pennsylvania creationist parents who prayed instead of calling the doctor, and watched as their son died of pneumonia. The two of them were convicted, but only of involuntary manslaughter. They have six other children.

In our previous post about the Schaible couple, Creationist Parents Guilty in Child’s Death, we explored the hard-core creationist teachings of the church they attend. It seems the ol’ devil was responsible, not them.

Today we have a follow-up. In the Times Leader of Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania we read Philly couple to be sentenced in child’s death. It’s a very brief article. Here are two excerpts, with bold added by us:

Sentencing is scheduled Wednesday in Philadelphia for a fundamentalist Christian couple convicted of causing the death of their toddler son by failing to get him medical care.

Wednesday is today, so maybe we’ll be able to report later on their fate. One more excerpt:

Assistant District Attorney Joanne Pescatore declined to tell the Philadelphia Daily News whether she will seek prison time but said she will ask that the couple be required to take their other six children for regular medical checkups.

That prosecutor seems every bit as creepy as the creationist parents. If the state doesn’t make a serious effort to lock those parents up for a long time, the prosecutor would be almost an accomplice if there should be another faith-killing in that family.

Stay tuned, dear reader. If the results of the sentencing make the news, we’ll let you know.

Copyright © 2011. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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27 responses to “Creationist Faith-Killing Parents to be Sentenced

  1. GreatGungHolio

    I know this may seem a rather crass comment but I respect these people for being honest enough in their beliefs to follow them through. Many religious types show blatant hypocrisy when distrusting the THEORY of evolution as demonstrated by biologists (tested with DNA and experiments on bacteria and small animals). Yet these same religious types are quite happy to trust other biologist who understand germ THEORY and demonstrate their knowledge by curing many nasty diseases previously attributed to god/demons.

  2. You know, these parents didn’t wake up one morning and decide that
    praying was more capable of healing than modern medicine.

    No, others convinced them and for reasons including increasing their wealth.
    Those, such as the pastor, or whatever you call him, are even more responsible than these parents as they are serial killers. They all should be dealt with as
    criminals.

  3. From their child murdering cult’s own website:

    #7 Believing faith in the atonement work of Jesus includes trusting God for healing without medicine, for divine protection without devices, and for daily needs without laid-up money. Acts 3:16 “By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong. It is Jesus’ name and the faith that comes through him that has given this complete healing to him.” When we worship and serve God, He heals us of illness Exodus 23:25.
    Psalm 91:9-10 “If you make the Most High your dwelling—even the LORD, who is my refuge—then no harm will befall you, no disaster will come near your tent.” Our trust is to be on God everyday for everything in life. Matthew 6:19-20 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth… But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven,” by giving it to charity.

  4. Charley Horse says:

    Those, such as the pastor, or whatever you call him, are even more responsible than these parents as they are serial killers.

    Yes, but in the immortal words of Willie Cicci: “Oh yeah … . The family had a lot of buffers!”

  5. One might respect them for adherence to their delusions to the point of their own deaths, although I would pity them.
    What they did was kill an innocent child in their care so as to stick to the rules of their pointless hobby. For that one should despise them.

  6. I know this may seem a rather crass comment but I respect these people for being honest enough in their beliefs to follow them through.

    I don’t. The type of person I respect more is the one who sees their child in mortal danger and decide the child’s welfare is more important than standing on their own principles. Hmm…I can be known as a hypocrite who saved a child’s life or I can protect my reputation as a godly man by letting him die. Yeah, that’s not even a moderately difficult choice.

    After all its not like they had to commit murder or some other atrocity to save their kid. They had to take him to a hospital and give him penicillin. When the cost to your ideals is so trivial and the result is saving a life, you save the frakking life and worry about the hypocrisy later.

  7. No jail time. The judge gave them 10 years probation and an order to provide medical care for their remaining 7 children.

    The parents said they would comply with the judge’s order in spite of their personal beliefs.

  8. Doc Bill says:

    No jail time. The judge gave them 10 years probation and an order to provide medical care for their remaining 7 children.

    Yeah. I’m sure they’ll be highly regarded in their church.

  9. cnocspeireag

    And there’s a judge I wouldn’t trust to clean my lavatory without supervision.

  10. GreatGungHolio

    I’ll tell you what pisses me off about this pair of delusional idiots…the fact that they have 7 kids to begin with. Rampant, exponential population growth on a finite planet leads to a Malthusian ending, all for the sake of selfish personal agrandisement through family size.

  11. We could always start regulating reproductive rights so that these kindsa folks cannot reproduce. In a few generations the problem will cease to exist.

  12. GreatGungHolio

    “We could always start regulating reproductive rights so that these kindsa folks cannot reproduce. In a few generations the problem will cease to exist.”

    Exactly. Although Chinas one child policy is a bit extreme, it has prevented an additional 400 million births.

  13. Gabriel Hanna

    Exactly. Although Chinas one child policy is a bit extreme, it has prevented an additional 400 million births.

    Would you consider yourself pro-choice? Becaused “forced abortion” is the polar opposite of the literal meaning of pro-choice. Furthermore, of those 400 million “prevented”, to use your euphemism, something like 3/4 of them were female.

    But hey, you can’t make an omelet without breaking eggs…

  14. Gabriel Hanna

    Excuse me for being sensitive but I have friends and relations who have suffered greatly under the Chinese government; those who think “being China for a day” is a great way to solve problems are dangerously naive at best.

    Anyway, anyone who thinks there’s too many people is free to do their bit. It’s a little shady to volunteer other people for non-existence.

    It’s one thing to argue for voluntary family planning, and another thing to applaud a police state that violates basic human rights.

  15. GreatGungHolio

    I’ll repeat my point – Rampant, exponential population growth on a finite planet leads to a Malthusian ending, all for the sake of selfish personal agrandisement through family size.

  16. GreatGungHolio says:

    I’ll repeat my point – Rampant, exponential population growth on a finite planet leads to a Malthusian ending …

    As with so many potential problems, that one is best left to free, uncoerced individual decisions in a framework of economic freedom. If parents had to pay their own medical costs and pay for their own and their children’s food, they would make rational decisions — or suffer the consequences. Irresponsible families would experience an isolated, mini-Malthusian solution. Nothing global. If government pays everyone’s medical bills and feeds their children, then yes, you have a point — provided such a crazed government could keep things going that long.

  17. GreatGungHolio

    Financial coercion is still coercion – just not as dramatic as physical/legal coercion. The only trouble is that the additional labour produced by large families reduces the value of all labour in the common market. We all have to then compete harder for the same resources (in a finite resource environment). This is an effect known as the ‘tragedy of the commons’ wikipedia.org/wiki/Tragedy_of_the_commons

  18. “economic freedom” What economic freedom? Only the rich have economic freedom and they use their money to pass laws so that they stay rich and the poor stay poor.

    “If parents had to pay their own medical costs and pay for their own and their children’s food, they would make rational decisions — or suffer the consequences.”

    No. I’m sorry but no it absolutely does NOT work that way. You assume that desperate people are rational??? And who suffers the consequences? The children, that’s who. So you’ll applaud a government that judges and/or condemn religious parents for not taking their kid to a hospital, but you expect society to stand by as the innocent children of poor people are exposed to the horrendous living conditions and soul-breaking atmosphere that is poverty. Hypocrisy!

    If you think that irresponsible parents are the problem and that children should be taken away and put in foster care, who is going to foot the bill for that? YOU? You who thinks that social services paid for by taxes are impinging on your precious freedom to hoard money?

    Right.

  19. Gabriel Hanna

    @GreatGungHolio:The only trouble is that the additional labour produced by large families reduces the value of all labour in the common market. We all have to then compete harder for the same resources (in a finite resource environment).

    Then how have standards of living all through the world continued to rise? Whatever planet you’ve been living on it hasn’t been this one.

    One of your fallacies is that you are holding everything constant and asking what happens when you increase the number of people. But everything else has not been constant. While population doubled three or so times over the last century, new resources were discovered and new technologies that extended what we could do with them. In the meantime, birth rates have been slowing all over the world and are actually negative in the West.

    When you’re that unrealistic, I guess it’s not surprising that you support violations of basic human rights for 1/6 of the world…

  20. GreatGungHolio

    Read the works of Thomas Malthus, The Tragedy of the Commons, and Overpulation, to reduce your ignorance of the subject.
    Fossil fueal are a finite resource which has been used to increse food production and the labour available through mechanisation.
    They create what is known as ‘ghost acerage’ available to humans allowing exponentialpopulation growth/consumption in the same way that algal blooms occur in ponds where a temporary influx of nutrients is introduced. When the oil/nutrients are comsumed, die-off events occur because the resource base is not sustainable.

  21. GreatGungHolio says: “… to reduce your ignorance of the subject.”

    Please make an effort to control yourself. I’ve pretty much ignored your recent comments, although on the topic of economics you’re “not even wrong,” but I must insist that you cease insulting those who understand the free enterprise system — which you do not. Okay?

  22. GreatGungHolio

    The previous coment was a response to Gabriel. I agree with LRA.

    Labour supply – From Wikipedia
    ‘In mainstream economic theories, the supply of labor is the number of total hours that workers wish to work at a given real wage rate. Realistically, the labor supply is a function of various factors within an economy. For instance, overpopulation increases the number of available workers driving down wages and can result in high unemployment.’

    Economics is a devisive subject, like religious belief, and opinions on which balance to be struck vary depending on what your views are on resource allocation.

  23. Gung Ho… Curmie puts up with my heresy, so just be careful. It is his salon, after all.

    😀

  24. LRA says: “Curmie puts up with my heresy …”

    Economics is a side issue around here, so I’ve never banned anyone for having oddball economic opinions. Disagreement is okay, but I don’t want disagreeable bahavior.

  25. Well, I can promise that I’ll be passionate about it, but I hope that’s not taken as disagreeable behavior.

    😉

  26. Gabriel Hanna

    @Gungholio:

    For my own amusement, I like to set up and solve differential equations that model population growth given various constraints on resources. For example, you might have a population of yeast with an initial stock of sugar, and their birth rate decreases as more yeast compete for less sugar. This is the model you are working from, whether you have solved it explicitly or not. So I have thought pretty hard about this issue.

    When a statement of yours is challenged for being a naive oversimplification, it does no good to merely repeat it in different words–even if those words come from Wikipedia. Neither does it do any good to cite authors from centuries ago as though no one had ever found anything wrong with their reasoning. For example, Mathus’ contention that population grows exponentially and food production linearly has been empirically proven false, as food production has grown exponentially faster than the human population. This is a historical fact. Of course I am not saying that it will necessarily continue forever.

    Fossil fueal are a finite resource which has been used to increse food production and the labour available through mechanisation.

    In other words, you have conceded everything I said. Two hundred years ago petroleum was an unwanted byproduct, the opposite of a resource. One hundred years ago, uranium was a rock with unusual properties. Fifty years ago nobody cared if all the rare earth minerals came from China. One thousand years ago pepper traded for its weight in gold and wars were fought to control the trade routes. Now it’s given away free with your food. When the Washington monument was capped with aluminum in 1884, aluminum had the same price as silver. Now it’s made into disposable beverage containers.

    EVERY resource is finite, in the long run, but because humans have intelligence, and don’t have to rely on natural selection, they don’t grow like algae in a pond. Humans are not merely mouths to feed, but brains to think and hands to work. If yeast could produce their own sugar, or develop substitutes when sugar runs low, the differential equations which govern their growth are different and have very different solutions.

    If the rate of growth is much faster than the rate at which new resources can be developed or invented, then and only then do Malthusian arguments apply. Of course exponential growth can’t go on forever–which only tells us that it won’t. Someday there will be some resource that is a fundamental limit on growth, but you can’t say what that resource will be, what form that limitation will take, or at what level the human population will stabilize. It might be the tonnage of coal and oil remaining, or it might be the amount of sunlight that falls on the Earth yearly, or the hydrogen in Jupiter and Saturn, or the amount of porn we can produce to pay for our antimatter imports from Tau Ceti IV.

    You also ignore that as human populations become richer, they grow exponentially at first but then the rate falls off. Most strikingly in Japan, which is projected to lose 25% of its population in the next 50 years–without starvation, secret police, or forced abortions, which makes your cheerleading for totalitarianism even less excusable, if possible. Individual Japanese, and their counterparts in the West, have decided that is in their self-interest to have fewer children and have them at a later age.

    While it’s great that you read some books and reasoned deductively from assumptions, that’s simply not enough. The real world is much more complicated.

  27. GreatGungHolio

    I mostly agree, Gabriel, but I am not a ‘cheerleader for totalitarianism’ – this is your straw man against my comment when I said that Chinas 1 child policy was a bit extreme. A stable population requires that 2 or 3 children survive to reproductive age – wheather it is with high birth/death rates or low ones. In first world countries, most children survive and ther is no need to have large families to ensure stable populations. Those that do decide to exceed this should be discouraged to prevent these families from taking unfair advantage of social services or environmental resources. The first method for discouragement should be moral/education. Fines and withdrawal of social services would be next before any physical/legal action is taken (I’m not going to speculate on this as you will probibly take it out of context)
    This is to ensure a fair system through mutual coercion. This makes a society more ‘free’ within the wider envionment in the same manner as preventing bank robbers from helping themselves to the vaults.
    The works of Malthus still stand. Easter Island is a cautionary tale. Fossil fuels – as the name implies – are finite in human timescales and we base 3/4+ of our energy from them. I forget who quoted it but “the size of a barrel is determined by the shortest stave” – this is an analogy which applies to living systems and populations. Technology is a great thing in allowing us access to new resources but population will expand into this gap untill they hit the next glass ceiling – fresh water, fertile top-soil, living space, energy or materials. If they can develop fusion and artificial photosynthesis then fair enough, populations could double a few more times. But to be truly enlightened and allow a natural environment to coexist with the human one, our population must be fairly managed. Only then will humanity and industrial civilisation be able to live for millions of years, rather than worrying about surviving to the next century.
    I happen to be and Architect so my technical arguments on demographics and economics will be lacking , but I am keenly aware of resource management issues.
    For what its worth, my own personal view on an ‘ideal’ society would follow the Nordic model – high social spending and well regulated markets. This includes universal education and access to family planning along with sustainable environmental management strategies.