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American Life League: Do Not Remove Lauren's Feeding Tube
Date:2/1/2008

WASHINGTON, Feb. 1 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Judie Brown, president of American Life League, released the following statement concerning an order by Delaware Court of Chancery Master Sam Glasscockon to give guardianship of Lauren Richardson to her mother, who wants to remove Lauren's feeding tube.

"Lauren is 23 years of age and, due to a heroin overdose, is now in a persistent vegetative state. At the time of the overdose, Lauren was expecting the birth of her baby and reports indicate that she was 'kept alive' to allow her to give birth, which she did in February of last year. Her daughter is now about to celebrate her first birthday, but Lauren may never have another birthday.

"Of interest is the fact that, during the pregnancy, Lauren relied on 'feeding tubes and a breathing machine' to keep her alive. Today Lauren has a feeding tube only. But there is a struggle going on regarding whether or not Lauren will live or die.

"Lauren's case is more than a sad commentary on the plight of a family battling over what each of the opponents believes would be in her best interest. Her story is a testimony to the growing philosophy in this country that some, because of their condition, are better off dead than alive.

"Like Terri Schiavo before her, Lauren is not dying nor is she in a terminal condition. She has been diagnosed as someone in a 'persistent vegetative state,' someone who is very much alive but locked in her body and unable to express her desires to anyone. The only thing Lauren is relying on is a feeding tube without which she will starve to death. Lauren's mother, who is Lauren's guardian, wants the feeding tube removed while Lauren's father is fighting to keep Lauren alive.

"This family is in our prayers. We hope that, in the interest of respecting Lauren's dignity as a human being whose future improvement or lack thereof is known only to God, the court will listen carefully to those who argue in favor of Lauren's right to life. It is a tragedy beyond description when any human being's fate rests solely on the subjective opinion of others, some of whom truly believe that patients like Lauren have no 'quality of life' and therefore are better off dead."


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SOURCE American Life League
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