Do you ever look at some people and wonder why they chose a particular line of work because it's just about the last thing they should be doing? Consider the nurse who just got sentenced to 10 years in jail for allowing a 14-year-old girl to starve to death. A 14-year-old girl, I should say, who had cerebral palsy and was under Mollie Parsons' care.
Allowing a child to die of malnutrition is the very antithesis of what the nursing profession is all about. We look to these women and men as professional nurturers, the people who seek out the job specifically because they care about people. But Parsons didn't care for 14-year-old Makayla Norman.
In fact, this nurse did such a horrific job that Makayla was just 28 pounds at the time of her death. Twenty-eight pounds at 14 years old. Picture that for a moment.
There's no way Parsons didn't see the problem there. You don't need to be a trained professional to notice a weight loss that drastic or to figure out what causes it. But Parsons was! She specifically chose a profession where she'd be caring for people like Makayla, little kids who depended on her 100 percent to give them what they need to survive.
And she failed at the job.
But nursing isn't the kind of job you can just fail at and bail out. This isn't ringing up blood oranges as navel oranges at the checkout line or printing 150 copies of a flier instead of 15 at the copy shop. This was a child's life, and now that child is gone.
Mollie Parsons was sentenced to 10 years in prison after pleading guilty to involuntary manslaughter, failing to provide for a functionally impaired child, and tampering with records. She got more time than Makayla's mother, who was sentenced to nine years.
Really makes you think about the people who choose a life of caring for others, doesn't it? This world is full of thousands of them who are there for the right reasons. And then there are the Mollie Parsons of the world ...
Do you think 10 years in prison is long enough for this crime?
Image via Montgomery County Sheriff