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Is veganism safe for kids?
A couple in Scotland fed their 12-year-old daughter a vegan diet and are now facing police scrutiny for her degenerative bone condition.
W
hat happened
A couple in Glasgow, Scotland, who raised their daughter on a strict vegan diet are facing police scrutiny after the daughter, now 12, was hospitalized with a severe rickets-like degenerative bone condition. Doctors say the girl has the spine of an 80-year-old woman. Rickets, caused by a lack of vitamin D, is common in poorer countries where there is widespread malnutrition. (The Daily Telegraph)

What the commentators said

So these “parents love animals so much that they nearly kill their daughter”? said Don Surber in a Charleston, W.Va., Daily Mail blog. Come on. “Man is an omnivore,” which is why we’re the only animals who can survive “on both poles and in between.” We eat anything and “need just about everything to live,” and that includes Vitamin D. So “quit politicizing food.”

“Once again, a vegan diet is being used as a scapegoat for health problems in children,” said Amy Fried in OpEdNews.com. Veganism and starvation are not equivalent, and we need “all the facts" about this story before we “jump to the knee-jerk conclusion of blaming veganism.” We don’t know, for example, “the details of the child’s diet—other than its lack of animal products.”

“I tend to adopt a ‘live and let live’ attitude toward vegans,” said Jazz Shaw in The Moderate Voice blog. “As I see it, it simply means less competition for the available supply of Kansas City ribeyes for yours truly.” What you do with your own body is your business, but when you take the philosophy to extremes and force it on vulnerable children you have “crossed a line” into irresponsible, and unacceptable, behavior.

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