GLENN: Matt Walsh. One of the clearest thinkers available today. And that's saying something because there are not a lot of clear thinkers out there. They're hard to find.
Matt Walsh, you'll find at TheBlaze.com. He's got a book out, The Unholy Trinity: Blocking the Left's Assault on Life, Marriage, and Gender. Make sure you pick it up if you're a fan of Matt Walsh. Make sure you grab the book. And also, you can find him at TheBlaze.com.
Matt, welcome to the program.
MATT: Hey, Glenn, thanks for having me.
GLENN: So you were the one who has really brought this story to the attention of -- of America, the Charlie Gard story, the story of this 11-month-old child who has been fighting for his life against the socialized medicine situation in England for months. I -- I can tell you why they're not covering it here in America. How are they covering it over in England?
MATT: Over there, it's been, as you said, for months, it's been -- it's been -- you know, the story has been all over the place. The parents have been all over their, you know, kind of prime time shows. And it's been sort of like what the Schiavo case was here, in terms of just the intensity of coverage.
GLENN: Are they as divided as we were with Schiavo?
MATT: Yeah. From my reading of the situation, they're just as divided. And it kind of cuts down the same lines. Although, I think in Europe you may have fewer who are sort of on the pro-life side than you do here, although we don't have that many here anymore too.
GLENN: Well, I don't remember if you remember this, Matt. But, Pat, play the audio clip. This is from a few years ago on like their breakfast show on the BBC. This is a guest, and they're talking about socialized medicine and what to do with undesirable children. Listen to this.
VOICE: This may strike your listeners as way out --
GLENN: No, this is not it.
VOICE: And I think if I were a mother of a suffering child, I would be the first to want -- I mean, a deeply suffering child, I would be the first to want to put a pillow over its face.
PAT: Good golly.
VOICE: And I think the difference is that my feeling of horror, suffering, is much greater than my feeling of getting rid of a couple of cells, because suffering can go on for years.
VOICE: I'm sorry. We're just about to introduce another guest there, but that's a pretty horrifying thing to say.
VOICE: That you would put the pillow over the --
VOICE: Of course I would. If it was a child I really loved that was in agony, I think any good mother would.
Matt, where is this coming from?
MATT: Now, that you played that, I do remember that. And that is -- just the idea that you're going to kill your own child out of love. This idea of killing out of love -- it's not any different than you hear these horrifying cases of mentally disturbed mothers. What about Andrea Yates who drowned her five kids in a bathtub and did it because she loved them? How is that any different?
It's no different. So once you start going down this train, that's where it heads. But where it comes from, we know all across the West, it's just a fundamental inability some people have to recognize that life is sacred, to recognize that life has inherent value. So you start seeing -- they see someone and they say, "Oh, they're suffering. They're disabled. Or they're poor," or they've got these other external factors that make their life less desirable. Well, you might as well get rid of them. Because there's no reason to keep them around.
So there's this kind of, like, utilitarian, materialistic view of life. That, as long as it's useful, as long as it's pleasurable, as long as it's convenient to those around it and to itself, then we keep it around. But once that ends, then we get rid of it. And it's just a -- it's a -- that's what I tried to explain when I wrote about it.
Once you've put yourself on that side of the argument -- and this is not hyperbole, you have put yourself on the same side of all of the worst people in the history of the earth. And all of the worst atrocities that have ever been committed, have always been committed with that kind of thinking. So you place yourself on that side. And good luck to you in that case.
GLENN: So, Matt, do you find any cause of concern? Have you read what the pope actually said, not just the release, but -- or the newspaper account from it, but what he actually -- the entire thing?
MATT: Yeah. Well, this is the story with the Vatican. At first, the -- you know, the Vatican comes out with a statement that all but explicitly endorses the courts and the hospital and takes their side in it, which was horrifying. I mean, I couldn't -- as cynical as I am, especially about this pope sometimes, I couldn't even -- I couldn't believe that. I couldn't believe that they actually did that.
Because we need -- we need the Vatican and the Catholic church to be pro-life, to be -- it's been one of the only pro-life institutions left standing. The idea that that would go away, to me, especially as a Catholic, I just couldn't stomach it. But then the pope comes out -- he sends out kind of a vague tweet. And then he comes out and he says that we need to support the child. And the Vatican offers to take the child into the Vatican Hospital, which, of course, the other hospital declines that.
But it's the same story. Where there's kind of conflicted messages. And obviously Pope Francis doesn't have control of what's going on there. But to me, it's still not enough. I need the pope to come out in stronger language and actually -- I know he doesn't like doing this kind of thing. But he needs to. Actually condemn --
GLENN: He condemns capitalism -- he condemns a lot of things. But he did not condemn the snuffing out of this child's life. And here's what he said: The complexity of the situation and the heart rendering pain of the parents and the efforts of so many to determine what is best for Charlie, we have to acknowledge we do sometimes, have to recognize the limitations of what can be done in modern medicine.
Well, where is the talk about, you know, the sanctity of all life? Where is the talk about miracles?
I mean, I don't understand this. We would stop all cancer treatment, except for the most benign of cancers. We would be doing experiments with people who are in stage four cancer. We would just say, you know what, let's accept the limits of modern medicine.
If we stop trying to save lives, medicine stops moving forward. Doesn't it?
MATT: Yeah. Well, it defeats the entire purpose of medicine. But that's the problem, once you introduced as we have in the last -- once you've introduced abortion and you introduce euthanasia -- and keep in mind, that in Europe, in some countries in Europe, you can get euthanasia -- even if you're not terminally ill, they give euthanasia to alcoholics, depressives, to children. So they're just getting rid of everybody on both ends of the spectrum over there, and it's completely perverted the whole concept of medicine, which is always to do no harm. Hippocratic oath. To always treat and heal and do what you can.
And that's the thing that's so horrifying, that the Vatican missed this aspect. Not just -- you know, it's bad enough that they didn't say enough on the sanctity of life issue of it, but this is -- the fundamental issue here is that the parents have their own money. And they just want to take what was donated to them -- they just want to take the kid, bring them to America, and just try, try something, rather than just letting him die. I mean, of course, any parent would want to do that if they had the means to do it. So this is just -- it's just -- I'm speechless.
GLENN: Slate has written an article: The right is turning the Charlie Gard tragedy into a case against single-payer health care. It's just the opposite. That's their headline.
And, first of all, is this not a case against single-payer health care? Even though these -- these parents have the money, once you're trapped into that system, that system must be absolute. You can't let people make their own decisions. So it must be absolute.
Is that not the only reason why they're not allowing this child to leave the hospital? Because the state must have control and be able to say, "I have the control of God over life and death and what you do once you check into our system." It's hotel California.
MATT: Yeah, this is all about -- of course. That's Slate for you, always missing the point. But that's -- of course, this -- it's about single-payer health care and it's about the sanctity of life. Those are the two issues that this is about, and about parental rights too. So those are the three. And it's all linked, of course. And the issue is: Who should have the final say on these kinds of medical decisions? Should it be the patient or the patient's caregiver, the parent, or should it be the state? Those -- that's the question. When it comes down to it, who decides what kind of treatment is given and which lives are worth saving?
And in a single-payer health care system, of course, it will be given control over to the government, so the government is going to make those decisions. Because it's all about efficiency. And it's all about, well, let's not waste our time or precious resources on this life that's going to die anyway, which is a really troubling way of looking at it. Because, hey, we're all going to die anyway. Like you pointed out, Glenn, cancer. I mean, there are many kinds of cancer that can be treated. But it probably will shorten your life span, even if you get past the first bout of it. I mean, there are many diseases like that.
So once you start traveling down this road, it goes to some really dark places. And it's astounding to me that so many people fail to see that because it's so obvious to me.
GLENN: Matt Walsh, the author of the article that I believe was the first article really to bring this to light in America, the story of Charlie Gard.
Slate writes -- and just think about what you just said, Matt. Slate writes: The right will raise the specter of death panels, which you just said, who makes the decision of who lives or who dies? Which is exactly what's happening. These outlets have turned one hard case into a sweeping referendum on the inherent justice and effectiveness of socialized medicine.
It's as if the death of one child matters, but the death of thousands is the cost of reform. Or as if intervening in one complex and tragic case is heroic, but building a system that would prevent the suffering of many is more intolerable overreach. How do you respond?
MATT: Well, that is -- first of all, I don't want to get too sidetracked. But this is not a hard case. This is not a hard case. This is a very basic, no-brainer case, that the parents should be able to go get treatment for the child, period. There's no other way of looking at it. There's no other way that a sane person can look at it. But, second, that's the whole point. This is what we're trying to avoid, this idea of weighing the one against the many. It -- health care, it's not supposed to be that way. We don't look at Charlie Gard and say, "Well, let's weigh him against 1,000 people."
He is one individual. Every life is of infinite value. And that's how all those lives -- all of them should be treated when they're in the hospital. Certainly, parents should have the right to treat their own children's lives that way.
And so we don't want to get into a situation where the government is coming in and sort of -- they have their formulas and their statistics, and they kind of have everybody on a spreadsheet. And they decide, "Well, let's emphasize this life over that one." We don't want to do that at all. That's the whole point -- we're trying to avoid that.
So that's why you allow individuals to make the decisions. And you allow the free market to reign, so that we don't have these kinds of weighing this against that. Because it shouldn't be. There's no reason for it to be that way. There's no reason we should have to weigh Charlie Gard's life against anything else because the parents have the money and they just want to get him treatment. And so they should be able to do it. That's it. We don't look at anything else or any other situations. They should be able to do what they want to do and have the resources and capability to do it.
GLENN: Matt, thank you very much. You can follow Matt at TheBlaze. Also, follow him at Matt Walsh Blog. And look for his podcast at SoundCloud.com. Matt Walsh.