By Calvin Palmer
The mother of the 11-year-old Wisconsin girl who died of undiagnosed diabetes while the family put its trust in the power of pray testified today that she believes sickness is caused by sin and can be cured by God.
Leilani Neuman who has been convicted of second-degree reckless homicide and is awaiting sentencing told the jury at the trial of her husband she thought her daughter’s illness was a test of her religious faith and she didn’t take the girl to a doctor because that would have been “complete disobedience to what we believe”.
As presiding judge at this trial, I would question whether this woman was competent to give evidence. However, I am not and all of Wisconsin can breathe a sigh of relief.
Dale Neumann, 47, is facing the same charge as that of his wife over the death of daughter Madeline Kara Neumann.
The prosecution argues he recklessly killed the youngest of his four children by ignoring her deteriorating health. They claim Neumann had a legal duty to take her to a doctor.
Leilani Neumann,41, testified for nearly five hours today, describing the events leading up to the death of her daughter on March 23, 2008. She died on a mattress on the floor of the family’s rural Weston home as people surrounded her and prayed. Someone called 911 when the girl stopped breathing.
Hallelujah! Praise the Lord! Although it was a bit late, locking the stable door after the horse has bolted.
The mother said that she and her husband believed their daughter’s deteriorating condition may have been the result of a falling out with another couple, and called them once the girl was unconscious and persuaded them to come pray for the girl.
Is this woman for real? Sadly, particularly in her daughter’s case, the answer is yes.
The family does not belong to an organized religion.
No kidding! Even the most fundamental churches would draw back from having these Looney Tunes among their congregation.
Leilani Neumann said she has nothing against doctors but believes in spiritual healing and viewed Madeline’s illness as “something spiritual”.
As you do, if you happen to have a warped mentality or one that belongs to the Dark Ages.
She also said that she did not realize her daughter was seriously ill until the day before her death, when the girl was weak and pale and had trouble speaking.
It took her that long?
“I asked her if she loved Jesus,” the mother testified. “She might have said yes. I know for sure she was acknowledging it. What sounds came out, I don’t remember. She was making noises… My focus definitely was to pray.”
She said she never once believed the girl would die.
“We thought even the lifelessness was something that she would come out of,” the mother said. “Everything for us is about faith. It is about trusting in God. We either believe in God’s word or we don’t.”
I am no Bible scholar but I would doubt there is any passage that suggests letting a loved one die in order to prove one’s faith. And has it not occurred to these two wackos that the Bible was written at a time when medicine was at its most crudest and base level? I imagine the Egyptians under the Pharaohs looked to Osiris when a family member became ill; the ancient Greeks called upon Apollo; the Nordic races invoked Odin or Thor. And, of course, all these dieties have since been discredited by the Christian faith, which begs the question about the validity of their own God.
A pediatric expert on diabetes told the jury yesterday that even right before her death, doctors might have been able to save the girl’s life had she been brought to a hospital.
The readers of the Wasau Daily Herald have rightly questioned whether this family had healthcare insurance. If they did, it makes a mockery of the faith they proclaim to hold. No surprise there.
The trial continues.
[Based on a report by the Associated Press.]