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Undated Photo of Tamara Lovett with Ryan as a baby

CALGARY, CANADA – Ryan Alexander Lovett, 7, died after suffering from a severe strep infection last March and his mother who only gave him homeopathic treatments is being charged with neglect.

Authorities accused mother Tamara Lovett of negligence due to treating his bacterial infection with homeopathic herbal remedies instead of taking him to a doctor. That decision directly lead to the child’s death, they claim.

“It was a belief system in homeopathic medicine that contributed to this death,” acting Staff Sgt. Mike Cavilla said. It should absolutely serve as a warning to other parents. The message is simple: if your child is sick, take them to the doctor.”

The single mother reportedly rejected conventional treatments in favor of holistic remedies. Police claimed that there was never any record of the child being brought in for regular checkups or treatments.

“We have no medical record of his entire life,” said Cavilla.

Family members are disputing the charges of negligence, claiming that Lovett was a very attentive mother. Grandfather of the child Donn Lovett said that the police are wrong to persecute her over her belief in holistic remedies. He said, “She devoted her life to that child. Ryan was beautiful, bright, happy and intelligent. I had seen Ryan the week before he got sick. I was supposed to pick him up on Monday and she said he had the flu. But then she sent a message he was looking good on Wednesday or Thursday and might be in school the next day.”

But Ryan would not return to school. He died in an emergency room from what the doctors called a flesh-eating disease. The family did not know that the mother was a suspect in her death and were shocked when the accusations came. Police reported that the woman’s friends were worried and instructed her to take the child to a real doctor. “According to people who saw the child prior to the death (he) looked very ill,” said Officer Cavilla.

Police reported that the woman called for help when the boy finally began convulsing in fits of seizures. Ryan died that night in the hospital with an autopsy confirmed a strep infection. Officers consulted medical experts and gained a warrant for her arrest. She will face charges of criminal negligence and failing to provide the necessities of life.

Canadian law makes it illegal for a parent or guardian to deny children food, shelter, medical care and the attention to sustain life and the protection from harm. “If you do not provide medical attention for your sick child, you will be held accountable,” said Officer Cavilla. “The legal requirement is that she get medical attention through traditional western medicine to deal with the illness. And in this case it was a bacterial infection that could have been easily treated with antibiotics such as penicillin.”

Homeopathic medicine has a long history, with its roots from Hippocrates and to Dr. Christian Hahnemann, a Saxon physician. Hahnemann believed that homeopathic medicines become more effective the more they are diluted. Homeopathic solutions are often so watered down that they don’t contain even one molecule of the original medicine or substance it came into contact with. Holistic cures do not work better than placebos, despite a thriving market for these “cures”. [contextly_sidebar id=”8154d026c2fb90d6695f27df58d9a254″]

Homeopathy has experienced a resurgence in modern times due to increasing disillusionment with modern medicine. Critics of “Big Pharma” often point to the profits that the modern medical industry receives as an incentive to force others to comply. However, those activists ignore the enormous profits from the anti-Big Pharma industry that also have major incentives to sell their remedies. “Big Homeopathy” is a $363 million a year business with a 7% annual growth rate and 3,988 businesses registered in the United States alone.

The legal questions have emerged in recent years due to increasing numbers of investigations and prosecutions for negligence when parents neglect medicine in favor of placebos. The question is if the mother willfully neglected her son due to her unwillingness to embrace the remedies that would have actually worked to save his life. Homeopathic remedies are absolutely ineffective. So did she kill him?

No, the disease did. But she was absolutely responsible for him not being able to recover. How liable should a parent be in the death of their child if they ignore the warnings of their neighbors and refuse to seek modern medicine? Modern legal theory is only now starting to set precedent with these sorts of cases.

 Video of Ryan

(Photo Credit: Darren

About The Author

Austin Petersen

Austin Petersen is the founder of The Libertarian Republic, as well as the CEO of Stonegait LLC. Formerly an Associate Producer for Judge Andrew Napolitano's show "Freedom Watch", on the Fox Business Network. Austin was referred to by the Judge as "The right side of my brain". He built Judge Napolitano's social networks with over 700,000 fans and millions of clicks a month. Austin graduated from Missouri State University. He has written and produced award winning plays and videos, and previously worked for the Libertarian National Committee and the Atlas Economic Research Foundation.

  • Bubba Jenkins

    Government is right on this one, she believes in a “fairy tale” of Homeopathic remedies. Because of that her child died. The child was innocent and if he chose to practice homeopathic medicine when he was old enough to make an informed choice, then that’s fine. But he was too young to choose and because of her forcing her selfish fantasy onto him he died.

    • RRaider

      Really??? How many medical “cures” cause more damage than they solve? Ever read the warnings on a lot of todays medications? If she took him to the doctor and he died from an adverse reaction to antibiotics would you be for charging the doctor with killing him?

      Even if her belief is completely wrong it is her right to believe as she does and to live according to her belief. This includes the care of her child.

      • Jonathan Vlietstra

        Essentially no medical cures do more damage than they solve. Granted many have side effects or should only be taken in moderation and only as needed, but when someone is seriously ill the proper medicine gives the best chance of survival/recovery.
        10000/10000 people with a disease that will kill them that rely on homeopathy (or faith healing) die. 1/10000 people with that same disease that will kill them and take antibiotics to cure it die of adverse reactions. Hmmm, I wonder what the better choice is?

        Honestly I cant believe how anyone who has actually heard of what Homeopathy is (essentially it boils down to ‘this water is magic because it was near actual medicine (or poison – they think what causes a problem will fix it if you just use a little instead) at one point’ ) could possibly believe it works and rely on it. The problem is likely immoral ‘doctors’ convincing people to buy their sugar pills.

  • RRaider

    What a perfectly statist article.

    • Pseudoscience isn’t libertarian and skepticism isn’t statism.

      • RRaider

        You are right, pseudoscience isn’t libertarianism. The right to believe in it and to live by one’s belief is. Skepticism isn’t statism, prosecuting someone for living according to their own beliefs is.

        If this woman did nothing, or went and partied then I could agree with a neglect charge. That is obviously not the case. She did what she believed was in the best interest of her child. You or the state agreeing with her belief does not define neglect any more than the outcome does.

        As long as people have a belief system you agree with it’s “libertarian” to allow them to follow it, if not they are somehow criminals. Got it.
        Statists want government deciding how parents raise their kids, apparently so do you.

        Do you even liberty bro?

        • Shawn

          You misspelled kill. “*kill* their kids”

          • Yes he forgot to mention the part where the thought it was cool for parents to kill their kids.

          • RRaider

            She killed her kid? If she took it to the hospital and got antibiotics resulting in a severe reaction and death she would have killed her kid as well I assume. I mean, you cant have it both ways. Obviously freedom is only for those who are as smart as you, or as informed as you, or at least don’t believe in the fairy tales of holistic medicine and religion.

            What is her crime? Stupidity? Ignorance? Being deceived? Do any of these = criminal negligence?

            Tragic, yes. Criminal, hardly

            You really don’t get liberty at all.

          • Brandon Hui

            Depends on how they look at it….if they think she was being “careless” by not bringing the child in for a second opinion or if they thought she was being “willfully blind” by refusing to do something that would save the child’s life well then yes…it falls directly under criminal negligence. I encourage you to seek a definition.

  • Kotsaris Z

    If you want to believe in fairy tales like alternative “medicine” or religion etc, be my guest. But don’t force your choice on others.

    • Francois Arseneau

      Fairy tales, nice choice of words. Look up at the fairy tale that is Jenner and the smallpox vaccine, or should I say cowpox. Which it still is today. The choice is being forced on who exactly. There shouldn’t be any monopoly on taking care of your health. If the government did not subsidize the medical establishment and protect the insurance corporations, you’d have an actual competitive system. People would not flock to get unnecessary medical procedures. Health is firstly a personal responsibility, it’s not your doctor’s responsibility. Millions of people are benefiting from various ‘alternative’ therapies with great success. To ignore that is down right weird.

      • Jonathan Vlietstra

        Jenner and smallpox = proof that vaccinations work, and your example shows exactly how they were come up with. In your other post you said they were complete fake crap. You sir, are a troll or very confused. And vaccinations are NOT alternative medicine. Alternative medicine that works is called medicine.

  • Francois Arseneau

    This is a slippery slope. Doctors are the 3rd cause of death in this part of the world. For example, vaccines are deadly and the cat is out of the bag that they are the cause of many chronic illnesses and death, if not complete voodoo. Modern medicine is pretty good at emergencies and temporary fixes. But, they fail miserably at overall health. There are plenty of people in jail for being wrongly blamed for the death of their babies or kids by vaccines and other medical procedures. It’s all about a balanced approach. Forcing people into a system is rarely beneficial for anyone. It helps the pockets of insurance industries and medical cartels. It’s possible that this baby would have died because of medical treatment also. What then? This is clearly a case of trying to demonize alternative therapies and push people to the front step of the doctor’s office.

    • Brandon Hui

      Chicken Pox, Diphtheria, Invasive H.Flu, Malaria, Measles, Pertussis,
      Pneumococcal Disease, Polio, Tetanus, Yellow Fever, Smallpox. Are you aware of what stopped these diseases from infecting your body and becoming massive widespread epidemics that would definitely reach you or someone you love and grip them tight?…..VACCINES….many of which…were discovered and released for FREE…Can you believe that there are doctors out there who actually care about the world and want to see people healthy, not fatten their wallets. Frederick Banting and J.J.R Macleod discovered a proper method to extracting and serving insulin, saving MILLIONS. You know what they sold the patent for……half a buck….50 cents…Listen..I know your on the whole conspiracy bandwagon and “lets blame the government” movement…but serious man, for you to believe that vaccines have little benefit shows how grossly under educated you are sir. I can;t believe you speak out about vaccines like that…and the “Cats out of the bag”…do you mean on all the conspiracy articles that you poison your brain with every day? Because the scientific community doesn’t agree with you….your internet surfing and bias opinions get stomped out hard by lifetimes worth of effort and learning poured into relevant subjects..Human Health and Medicine. The human life span has taking ginormous steps since the 19th century and for good reason…were SMARTER then we used to be…we realized that these methods to treating sickness were garbage…we couldn;t keep people alive past 50 years old with those old techniques….why are people reverting back to them…Don’t listen to celebreties…if your going to self treat your children….please at least take them to see a doctor first….because all your doing with self – diagnoses is scanning the internet…you don;t know the first thing when it comes to diagnosing someone because you did not study it for half your life.

      Not hating or anything…I just want people to survive and i think its silly to expose your children to all the diseases listed above…please go speak with doctors and medicinal scientists before you believe a bunch of internet hooplah and your friends. i only want you and your family to be safe….Happy Holidays

      • Francois Arseneau

        Sheesh, you’re making a lot of suggestions about me. It just happens I have a pretty cool library collection on this topic. I used to just ‘believe’ that the medical system was based on science. I was greatly disillusioned by years of reading on the topic of health. It became clear that profit is the motivation that drives this system, even though many participants are really thinking of the greater good, most of the ‘science’ behind the machine is nothing but pure tobacco science. Vaccines are a complete crock of shit. They’ve nothing to do with the near disappearance of disease. If you open up a great recent book on topic; Dissolving Illusions; the author makes a great case (as are hundreds of doctors and other books) that hygiene and social conditions wiped out these diseases. Fact is, typhoid fever and a whole bunch of diseases all went out or dramatically decreased BEFORE the advent of vaccines and antibiotics, and most of which there were no vaccines. I could go on, but I’ll be more polite and give you a chance to catch up to a decade of serious study on this topic. As far as alternative medicine, there’s some good and there’s some bad. Just like in the current medical monopoly, it’s not all bad, but there are a shit load of arrogant assholes in that system that are stuck in a fake paradigm. There’s nothing conspiracy here. In fact, if you want conspiracy, get the meeting notes of all the secret meetings between CDC officials and pharmaceutical representatives where they are doing everything they can to prevent the vaccine chronic disease and autism connection from going public. It’s all documented if you dare to look. Or maybe you’re just more comfortable sticking with your belief system. But, you’re kind are losing, as people are educating themselves about taking care of ones health and vaccines and pills are NOT the solution. They are often more part of the problem.

        I wish you a nice evening. I have a good workout in front of me.

        • Brandon Hui

          Have a good one…don’t buy it tho…i trust scientists like I said…not authors writing their opinions down. were divided and there’s no changing either of our minds. Good luck

        • Jonathan Vlietstra

          Gee, sounds like you fell for the old ‘show a graph of DEATHS from a disease and lie by saying its INCIDENCES of a disease’.
          I take it you read NaturalMedicine .com ? they do that all the time, show one graph and pretend its a different one.
          You buying their sugar pills, I mean ‘immune booster pills’ ?

  • Looweez69

    It’s fine to have a “belief system”; most of us have one. But are your beliefs backed up by quantifiable, scientific facts? I will absolutely stand by the right of any adult to believe in breathairianism, as utterly deluded as that may be, but no sane or reasonable person would let an adult inflict breatharianism on their children. This mother, who I believe to be a loving, caring mother, just had one blind, pseudoscientific spot. Due to her belief in pseudoscience, the sad consequence is that her much-loved child is dead. It is a sad case, and a salient learning experience for other parents who may be considering inflicting psuedoscience on their children. Let their children choose homeopathy or faith healing when they have survived their childhoods.