Monday, July 22, 2013
Coroner condemns British paramedics who refused to save drowning man in ditch 'for health and safety reasons'
Emergency workers of a sick country. Concern about "Health and Safety" is a major and most destructive form of political correctness in Britain
A coroner has condemned paramedics who refused to jump into a drainage ditch to treat a dying man because they would not break health and safety rules.
Young farmer Michael Thornton had been knocked unconscious when a Land Rover he was in crashed and overturned in the water.
But when paramedics arrived they made a snap 'risk assessment' and refused to get into the 10ft-wide canal.
The 30-year-old eventually died as a result of drowning and his head injuries.
Michael Rose, the coroner for West Somerset, said: 'I will not say what I think of health and safety regulations. 'I was brought up in a country where men risked their own lives to save the lives of others. 'That was a period in our history which has almost ceased.'
Mr Rose recorded an accidental death verdict and did not say his life could have been saved if the paramedics had gone in the water to reach him.
Driver Matthew Braddick and his friend Jason Cheal managed to escape and haul Mr Thornton on top of the upturned vehicle, where they attempted CPR.
A policeman who arrived at the scene minutes later had no hesitation and immediately plunged into the water.
He helped pull Mr Thornton to the road where the paramedics were waiting but they were unable to revive him.
An inquest heard that the primary cause of his death was drowning coupled with reduced consciousness and a traumatic head injury.
But despite their refusal to jump in, bosses at South Western Ambulance Trust insisted the crew made exactly the right decision and performed admirably. A spokesman said: 'The trust is confident the crew made an appropriate risk assessment on arrival at the scene and administered the best possible care in what were particularly difficult circumstances.'
Coroner Mr Rose said the Land Rover had not been travelling at more than 30 mph and may well have swerved to avoid an animal on the country road.
Mr Thornton was a young farmer who had his own agricultural businesses.
At the time of his death his mother Mandy Phillips, 53, said: 'It still doesn't seem real and I expect him to walk back through the door. We will miss him terribly. 'He always had a smile on his face and he lived for his tractor driving.'
His partner Liz Richardson, 35, added: 'He was a very hard worker and would do anything for anyone. He loved his job, his work and being out in the countryside.'
The inquest heard that Mr Thornton's friends were unable to carry the knocked-out victim up the slippery slopes of the 10ft-wide rhyne [drainage ditch].
An ambulance eventually arrived but the paramedic refused to climb down into the shoulder-high water, citing health and safety.
But as soon as PC Leslie Day arrived he jumped in and between them managed to get injured Mr Thornton out of the rhyne for proper medical assistance.
In a statement to the inquest Mr. Braddick's statement described his shock at the medic's refusal to enter the water.
Racist British bureaucrats
Isabelle Coad couldn’t have wished for a happier childhood – despite being abandoned at birth in her native Sri Lanka by her 16-year-old mother who had been raped.
She was adopted by an English couple who brought her to Britain and raised her along with their natural sons in the leafy suburbs of Loughborough.
She realised that her life had been so enriched by the experience that at the age of 23 she decided to follow in her adoptive parents’ footsteps and adopt a foreign child so she could transform his life.
But she hadn’t bargained for the politically correct bureaucracy that plagues Britain’s adoption process.
Even though Isabelle had been happily brought up in a mixed race family, she found that the adoption authorities seemed obsessed by ‘colour matching’.
Nathaniel had been born in Uganda and dumped in a skip at about 18 months old before being taken to an orphanage. When Isabelle found him she planned to save him from the life of poverty and pain that could have been her own fate. But the adoption authorities in the UK advised her ‘not to bother’ because the colour of his skin differed from hers.
‘They asked how I could look after his Afro hair and skin when it was so different from my own,’ says Isabelle, 30.
‘And then they asked how could I feed him according to his cultural needs. I don’t think Nathaniel was going to complain about not being served Ugandan food. For him, any food was a luxury.
‘When he was found he was suffering from malnutrition, malaria and rickets, was covered in scars from being beaten and had a cataract in his left eye.
‘He spoke a strange dialect that no one understood, and while he knew how to wash clothes, he didn’t know how to play with toys.
‘I really don’t think he would have survived if he had been left in Uganda as a street kid. ‘Some are drafted into child slavery while others become child soldiers. And there is still child sacrifice in Africa.
‘But the UK has a fixation with having the perfect arrangement when it comes to inter-racial adoption. They want parents from exactly the same background as the child. It’s ludicrous.’
Isabelle, a learning support worker, fought a five-year battle to adopt Nathaniel, at one stage moving to Uganda to ensure she could become his mother. She almost lost him to pancreatitis and narrowly escaped death herself when she was attacked by masked gunmen who opposed mixed race adoption.
But finally she was able to bring Nathaniel, who is now seven, to live with her in Loughborough.
It is testimony to Isabelle’s bravery and steely tenacity that she has been able to adopt her son and now she is equally determined to bring about a change in the law to ensure that other British families, trying to adopt within the UK, don’t fall foul of the same bureaucracy.
‘I went through hell, but I am one of the lucky ones,’ she admits. ‘The whole adoption process here is ridiculous. It needs to be reformed and made less stringent. There are so many loving families willing to take in a needy child.
‘Should we really prevent that from happening just because their skin is a different colour?’
The situation stems from the fact that the majority of children on the adoption register in the UK are from minority ethnic backgrounds, while those wishing to adopt are predominantly white. Currently 4,600 needy and abandoned children are waiting for new parents.
It takes nearly two years to adopt a white child in Britain, but almost a year longer to adopt a black child because of the inter-racial problem.
Education Minister Michael Gove – who was himself adopted – recently called for an urgent overhaul of the system, describing current law as ‘misguided’ and insisting that ‘ethnicity must not stand in the way if there is a loving family, ready and able to adopt a child.’
The Department of Education hopes the reforms, which include cutting the time it takes for a child to be adopted, are made law by the first quarter of 2014. But Mr Gove faces opposition from some of Britain’s adoption charities, which continue to insist that children’s culture and ethnicity should not be dismissed.
Isabelle’s parents, Adrian and Elisabeth, faced no such problems when in 1983 they adopted her from Sri Lanka, along with another baby, Miriam, who had been abandoned on the steps of a school.
Adrian had worked in Sri Lanka and, at that time, Britain had an adoption agreement with the country. The couple had two boys of their own – Gregory, then six, and Alexander, three. They wanted a larger family but Elisabeth was unable to have more children.
Mr Coad, 65, recalls: ‘We wanted two girls so they could have each other. There was no problem with the inter-racial thing.’
Isabelle was never keen on having children of her own but became interested in adopting when she volunteered to work at the Amani Baby Cottage orphanage in Uganda. Nathaniel arrived there in 2006, in an appalling physical condition.
It was a time when Madonna and Angelina Jolie were adopting children from different ethnic backgrounds, making the process look easy. The reality, however, was vastly different. When the British Embassy in Kampala failed to provide any information on adoption and Isabelle drew a blank on the internet, she phoned Leicestershire County Council for help.
‘They basically told me not to do it and questioned my ability to look after an African child,’ she says. ‘That’s when they asked the ridiculous question about being able to tend to his hair.’
After working at the orphanage for several months, Isabelle was no stranger to the atrocities that people inflicted on unwanted children. One baby had been thrown into a latrine and lay there for several days before being found. Another premature baby was found in a sealed plastic bag, out in the rain. He was placed in a broken incubator and kept warm with a kerosene lamp. Miraculously, he pulled through.
Amid such atrocities, Nathaniel’s story hardly stood out but, after nursing him back to health over several months, Isabelle developed a deep bond with him. ‘I didn’t go to Africa with the intention of adopting a child, but I just knew then that God wanted me to adopt Nathaniel,’ she says.
Back home, Isabelle began research and discovered that under Ugandan law, any prospective parent must become a resident of the country for a minimum of three years in order to foster a child before adopting them. So in 2008 she decided to move there to foster Nathaniel, unsure of when or if she would return to Britain.
She found work as a teacher in an international school and was soon fast-tracked to become its co-ordinator on a much higher salary. This infuriated many locals, some of whom were also unhappy about her adoption bid.
Nathaniel was taken away from her twice before the attack by masked gunmen, who broke into Isabelle’s compound at 3am.
‘I had to run through the grounds to let the security guard in,’ Isabelle says. ‘I didn’t think about being shot, I just ran for my life.’ The thugs fled. ‘I was told if they come with guns they’re there to kill you. And afterwards I was told it was because of the adoption. But I wasn’t prepared to give up; I couldn’t just leave Nathaniel as an orphan again.’
Isabelle is convinced she was given a hard time by the Ugandans because she was [South] Asian – a hangover from former dictator Idi Amin’s days, and his expulsion of the country’s 80,000 Asians in 1972.
In 2009, after two failed attempts, Isabelle, who is single, finally brought Nathaniel to England for six months just in time for Christmas. By this time she had established legal guardianship. ‘It was so special and such a relief to be home,’ she says. ‘He kept talking about the Christmas lights and also saw snow for the first time.’
Then in April 2010, Nathaniel was rushed to hospital with a suspected perforated bowel and spent five days in intensive care. Doctors diagnosed pancreatitis caused by an infection. Luckily, he has suffered no lasting effects.
The pair never returned to Uganda and, instead, later that year Isabelle decided to adopt him in Britain. Initially she was told she was unlikely to succeed but in December 2011, and completely out of the blue, she received a letter from Nottingham County Court, inviting her to celebrate Nathaniel’s adoption. ‘I was not expecting that at all,’ Isabelle says. ‘I called my dad and then went to Nathaniel’s school to tell him. He was so happy.’
Looking at Nathaniel today, no one would believe what he’s been through. Dressed in a smart Ralph Lauren shirt – ‘an eBay bargain’ – he zooms around chatting in perfect English. His laughter fills the family’s four-bedroom house, but he listens attentively to his story – his mother has never tried to hide it from him.
He never wants to return to Uganda. Hugging Isabelle, he says: ‘It’s a scary place.’
Yesterday a Leicestershire County Council spokesman said: ‘We work hard to find secure and loving homes for the children in our care. The priority for adoption agencies across the UK is the welfare of each child, and although we have no record of this discussion, it would be normal to explore people’s suitability as an adopter.’
Sikhs in Britain told to halt weddings over homosexual rights
The future of traditional Indian weddings in Britain is in doubt because of the fallout from gay marriage passing into law, it has emerged.
Sikh temples have been advised to halt all civil marriage ceremonies on their premises to protect them from possible legal challenges for refusing to conduct same-sex weddings.
It is the first example of a religious group altering its marriage practices to avoid potential litigation based on equalities or human rights law.
Other groups, including the Church of England, the Roman Catholic Church and the orthodox Jewish organisation United Synagogue, also resisted the legislation, but they have not indicated that they will go as far as to surrender their marriage licences.
The Government has given repeated assurances that legal provisions should prevent anyone being forced to act against their religious teachings.
The warning comes in a letter to Sikh places of worship, known as gurdwaras, from Sikhs In England, a specialist advisory body. It urges them to consider deregistering as a venue for civil weddings — which would leave gurdwaras performing wedding rites with no legal force. Couples would have to attend a separate ceremony in a register office or other venue recognised by their local council.
Although the advice is not binding, it is understood that it is being taken seriously.
Lord Singh, the director of the Network of Sikh Organisations, told the House of Lords that he feared opponents of same-sex marriage would be “coerced” into accepting the new legal definition of marriage.
The network also advised members that it believes faith groups could end up being “bullied” into conducting same-sex marriages.
The same-sex marriage Act, which received Royal Assent this week, contains provisions to prevent individuals and groups from being compelled to carry out such unions, under a so-called “quadruple lock” of legal protections.
But Sikhs In England has told supporters that such assurances could be swept away by a challenge in Strasbourg. Harmander Singh, principal adviser to Sikhs In England, said: “We are concerned that the quadruple lock isn’t going to be worth the paper it is written on.
“In the longer term, as soon as there is an issue and it goes to the European Court of Human Rights, no one can be sure, because the quadruple lock means nothing under subsidiarity.”
In common with many churches, mosques and synagogues, gurdwaras are registered with councils as venues to conduct weddings. It enables them to combine the civil formalities of the marriage with a religious ceremony.
If Sikh places of worship deregister, it would lead to a situation similar to that in France, where couples have a civil wedding at the town hall with a church service as an optional extra.
“We have no authority, neither has the Government, to change our scriptures,” said Mr Singh. “We are bound by our religious teachings and we have been put in a difficult situation.”
He added: “Civil marriage is, with respect, a paper exercise.”
CDC Study: Use of Firearms For Self-Defense is ‘Important Crime Deterrent’
“Self-defense can be an important crime deterrent,”says a new report by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). The $10 million study was commissioned by President Barack Obama as part of 23 executive orders he signed in January.
“Studies that directly assessed the effect of actual defensive uses of guns (i.e., incidents in which a gun was ‘used’ by the crime victim in the sense of attacking or threatening an offender) have found consistently lower injury rates among gun-using crime victims compared with victims who used other self-protective strategies,” the CDC study, entitled “Priorities For Research to Reduce the Threat of Firearm-Related Violence,” states.
The report, which notes that “ violent crimes, including homicides specifically, have declined in the past five years,” also pointed out that “some firearm violence results in death, but most does not.” In fact, the CDC report said, most incidents involving the discharge of firearms do not result in a fatality.
“In 2010, incidents in the U.S. involving firearms injured or killed more than 105,000 Americans, of which there were twice as many nonfatal firearm-related injuries (73,505) than deaths.”
The White House unveiled a plan in January that included orders to the CDC to “conduct research on the causes and prevention of gun violence.” According to the White House report, “Research on gun violence is not advocacy; it is critical public health research that gives all Americans information they need.”
The Institute of Medicine and the National Research Council released the results of their research through the CDC last month. Researchers compiled data from previous studies in order to guide future research on gun violence, noting that “almost all national survey estimates indicate that defensive gun uses by victims are at least as common as offensive uses by criminals, with estimates of annual uses ranging from about 500,000 to more than 3 million per year.”
“Most felons report obtaining the majority of their firearms from informal sources,” adds the report, while “stolen guns account for only a small percentage of guns used by convicted criminals.”
Researchers also found that the majority of firearm deaths are from suicide, not homicide. “Between the years 2000 and 2010, firearm-related suicides significantly outnumbered homicides for all age groups, annually accounting for 61 percent of the more than 335,600 people who died from firearm-related violence in the United States.”
African American males are most affected by firearm-related violence, with “32 per 100,000” deaths. Risk factors and predictors of violence include income inequality, “diminished economic opportunities . . . high levels of family disruption” and “low levels of community participation.”
The report expresses uncertainty about gun control measures, stating that “whether gun restrictions reduce firearm-related violence is an unresolved issue,” and that there is no evidence “that passage of right-to-carry laws decrease or increase violence crime.” It also stated that proposed “gun turn-in programs are ineffective.”
Instead, researchers proposed gun safety technologies such as “external locking devices and biometric systems” to reduce firearm-related deaths.
“I thought it was very telling that this report focused so heavily on . . . futuristic technology that’s not been brought to the market in any kind of reliable form that consumers have any interest in,” John Frazer, director of research and information at the National Rifle Association (NRA), told CNSNews.com.
These “smart gun” technologies are “designed to prevent misuse, to prevent either accidents or crimes committed with stolen guns,” Frazer noted. “Obviously it wouldn’t have any effect on crimes committed with a gun purchased by the criminal. It obviously wouldn’t have any effect on suicides by people who bought the guns themselves.” However, “it could have a huge burden on self-defense rights of law-abiding people if they’re forced to use an unproven technology.”
The CDC’s findings - that guns are an effective and often used crime deterrent and that most firearm incidents are not fatal - could affect the future of gun violence research..
The report establishes guidelines meant only for future “taxpayer-funded research,” Frazer said. However, “the anti-gun researchers out there who want to study and promote gun control are perfectly free to get funded to do that by [New York] Mayor Bloomberg or by any number of other organizations or foundations.”
“It depends on who’s doing the research,” Frazer added. “I would be very concerned that a lot of the follow-up research that might come from this agenda would be more of what we’ve seen from the anti-gun public health establishment in the past.”
Calls and an email from CNSNews to the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence were not returned..
According to a National Academies press release, organizations supporting the CDC study have close ties to Obama.
When contacted by CNSNews, the Annie E. Casey Foundation issued a statement reaffirming its support for the study, which “is in keeping with our work to collaborate with public agencies, nonprofit organizations, policymakers and community leaders to make a positive impact on the lives of kids, families and communities.” Patrick Corvington, the foundation’s former senior associate, was nominated by Obama and confirmed in 2010 as CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service.
Other supporters include The California Endowment, which has been promoting Obamacare; The Joyce Foundation, on whose Board of Directors Obama served for eight years prior to his Senate run; and Kaiser Permanente, which contributed over half a million dollars to his presidential campaign.
Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.
American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.
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