How Mariah Walton came to be left with permanent damage as a result of her parents Christian beliefs which refuse medical treatment. Criminal neglect?
Mariah Walton a 20 year old Idaho woman who has been left permanently disabled has appeared in a town hall meeting telling her fundamentalist Mormons parents deserve to be prosecuted because of a heart condition they left untreated for 18 years because of their beliefs.
The woman’s claims come after she had to ‘blackmail’ her father, a member of the Followers of the Christian sect, an offshoot of a Pentecostal faith-healing sect who believes medical treatments intervene with God’s will, to get him to take her to the doctors after collapsing two years ago.
At the time, Mariah Walton was told she was suffering from pulmonary hypertension – irreversible heart damage, which was caused by a small hole in the organ being left untreated.
In a feature with the guardian, the daughter has told she believes her parents deserve to be prosecuted over their lack of action.
Told the daughter: ‘Yes, I would like to see my parents prosecuted. They deserve it – and it might stop others.’
Walton’s comments come after speaking about the moment she discovered she had the disease.
During a town hall meeting the daughter appeared earlier this year, Mariah Walton told how she first made her father take her to the doctors while her mother was at work one day.
Told Walton at the time: ‘The doctor started asking me a lot of questions I didn’t understand and used references – I didn’t know what any of them meant.
‘She told me I had this disease and I had no idea what it was. I was very scared going there.
‘On the way back I had been crying… I was so scared about what my parents were going to say to me because my whole life they had threatened me [saying] if I were to go that something terrible would happen to me.’
Walton, who has moved in with her sister, now has to carry an oxygen tank around with her and must have heart and lung transplant surgery if she wants any chance of recovering.
A report via the dailymail describes the Followers of Christ as a small Christian sect, based predominantly in Idaho and Oregon, constituting with a membership with less than 2,000 members.
Of note, the mortality rate for families in the sect is believed to be around 10 times higher than the state’s rate. Many of those who die are young children or newborn babies following complications at birth.
Many would see Walton’s parents’ actions as medical neglect, and in many states, they would be charged with a crime. In their home state of Idaho, however, laws exempt faith healers from prosecution.
That said, Mariah Walton is now campaigning for a change alongside others affected including Brian Hoyt, who broke his ankle when he was 12 and had it treated with olive oil.
Speaking during the same meeting, Brian Hoyt also revealed he was beaten by family members after he collapsed from pain one day because they believed he ‘didn’t have enough faith’.
And then there were these comments from the web that made me wonder. See what you think?
If you want to trust in divine, instantaneous healing for you own sickness, that’s fine, but you can’t make someone have as much faith as you. Miracles, by definition, are rare. Take you child to the doctor. Pray for that doctor. God can heal someone in a hospital just as well as in your home.
If we accept religion in society doesn’t that mean that we accept people’s decisions to let God make decisions of life and death?
And if we accept people’s right to believe in an eternal afterlife don’t we need to allow them and their families clear passage to their heaven? And what about religious people who support medical interventions over the will of the families beliefs? How can people who go to church and say they believe in God and the bible and heaven stand in the way of people who’s interpretation of the word of the lord will just get them to heaven quicker?
Personally I think religions have outlived their usefulness but if you believe in a god why would you stand in the way of people that put their lives in his hands. Isn’t that what the bible teaches you to do?
If we kept praying instead of inventing medicine, the human species might have disappeared (plague and all that). Now god doesn’t help those that don’t help themselves and like the rest of us…God also hates idiots.
Healthcare is a basic human right which nobody should be denied when in need. Its like refusing water to someone and letting them die of dehydration while you’re praying for them. It’s no different. You should not have the right to do it especially for non adults who cannot be legally responsible for themselves.
Why do anything if it’s just up to the will of God? Why eat, why drink, why work, why wipe your bottom? God should just work it all out for you. Stupid. This girl will be suffering physically and emotionally from this for the rest of her life. Make an example of these parents, nail them to the wall!
SO tired of these people twisting the scriptures to suit themselves. I just wonder why, as she was no longer a helpless little child, she didn’t go get help on her own? I guess the mind-control they assert over their deluded congregants is just too strong, but, good for her that she finally got out of there and got whatever help is still available to her. Yes, they SHOULD be prosecuted!!! Antiquated laws that protect the perpetrators of these outrages, like refusing medical help for their children, taking them out of school after 8th grade, plural marriages…often to underage girls… and on and on, on “freedom of religion” excuses, should be amended!!!