By Jonathon Van Maren
April 30, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – As most of you will already know, Alfie Evans passed away in Alder Hey Children’s Hospital during the early morning hours of April 28, ending a bitter battle between his parents, Alfie’s doctors, the British court system over who had the right to determine the little boy’s treatment.
The parents had sought permission to take their son to Italy, and the Hospital had refused, saying that further treatment was not in Alfie’s “best interests.” Alfie had been taken off the ventilator that doctors had said was necessary to save his life on Monday, but the boy had instead begun breathing on his own. He was twenty-three months old when he died.
Alfie’s story is both inspirational and infuriating. Inspirational, because the little boy clung to life with a tenacity that attracted attention from around the world. Infuriating, because it is so hard to understand why the Alder Hey Children’s Hospital could not simply have allowed Alfie to be transferred to a hospital that was more than willing to take him—but instead fought with the parents in court, insisting that their judgment should override that of the parents.
But in the midst of all of these details—I won’t rehash them all, as many of you are no doubt already familiar with them—the story of Alfie Evans may be remembered as a cultural watershed moment. Let me give a few reasons for that bold assertion.