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Children: Government Shutdown’s Collateral Damage

Even though an elderly couple has been evicted from their home located on federally-owned Lake Mead in Nevada, the Obama family is still living comfortably at federally-owned 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, compliments of the American people. Moreover, while the Clinical Center at the National Institutes of Health is suspending its dog therapy program because of the government shutdown, it’s likely the Obama family dogs Bo and Sunny are still getting quality gourmet dog food delivered directly to the door of the White House.

For those who’ve been busy loading applications on their iPhones, this sort of shutdown madness began when the spiteful Obama administration caused kids with cancer to be excluded from participating in clinical trials. After all, in the scheme of things, what are a few dead kids if it stops Republicans from defunding healthcare?

Let’s remember, Barack Obama is the nation’s number one promoter of abortion, be it first, second, third, or even, if necessary – so as not to undermine the original intent of aborting a baby – post-trimester.

In an equally disturbing shutdown decision, while Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move!” site remained active, the Amber Alert website was also taken offline, which limited the ability to locate and report abducted children. On the upside, however, at least child kidnappers couldn’t use the excuse that they didn’t know soda and candy were off-limits to their captives.

Now, in an ongoing effort to make life even more miserable for all Americans, rather than act like an adult, Obama’s “I’ll show you” refusal to negotiate with his political adversaries is further jeopardizing sick children.

That’s right – in order to get John Boehner to cry “Uncle”, the president’s obstinate conduct is ensuring that the kids excluded from clinical trials, suffering helpless in their beds, no longer receive comfort from visiting therapy dogs.

According to John Burklow, spokesperson for National Institute of Health (NIH), due to limited staff the furry dogs that visit children with cancer have also been fur-loughed.

Even though the dog therapy program is run by volunteers, the NIH veterinarians are paid as federal employees, which is why a NIH “team” made the decision to suspend the visiting dog program.

Burklow explained that prior to going to the bedside of a sick child, “A vet needs to evaluate the dogs, and given that there is a 25 percent reduction in staff,” they’ve decided to “focus [their] activities and staffing on the care of patients already at our hospital.”

Far be it from little ole’ me to suggest that maybe the $47,174 the government just spent on a mechanical bull for the Utah National Guard could have been put to better use if invested in the NIH visiting dog program.

That aside, the White House blog is currently requesting stories about how the government shutdown is negatively affecting everyday American citizens. Maybe Abby Whetzel should log on and give politicians abusing children for political expediency a piece of her mind.

Abby Whetzel’s son Sam is dying from leukemia. Ms. Whetzel told NPR’s Morning Edition that the visiting dogs were the “highlight of Sam’s week” and that the boy was disappointed when he was told that his furry friends would not be visiting due to the government shutdown.

According to his mother, “[Sam] has a special fondness for the little dogs that can come and just sit on his bed and lay down and curl up with him.”

Well, tough noogies! Sam should grow up, this isn’t about him!

What’s going on right now is about Barack Obama’s vision for a fairer, more caring America. Regrettably, Sam is collateral damage. Just ask Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev), who’s already made it quite clear that one kid with cancer is not his concern.

Burklow did say that eventually the program would be reestablished. According to Mr. Burklow, the program will “resume…once the government is re-opened.” Sorry John, but for Sam, eventually may be too late.

Obama’s misusing terminally ill and abducted children as pawns in a political game is certainly a new low, even for a man who refused to sign a bill that would ensure that babies born alive in botched abortions would be treated humanely.

Evidently, the president is all for inflicting pain on the little ones if it means protecting his broader vision of providing healthcare to all Americans. Yet, hurting the weak and vulnerable to achieve that goal proves that, without a doubt, the well-being of anyone, let alone sick children, is certainly not Barack Obama’s concern.

Jeannie hosts a blog at

Image:; author: D Sharon Pruitt; Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license

Jeannie DeAngelis

Jeannie DeAngelis, born in Brooklyn, New York and raised on Long Island, is a wife, mother and grandmother to three grandsons. She has written for politically-themed articles for conservative websites like American Thinker and Breitbart, emphasizing current events as well as the full range of liberal hypocrisy in politics and Hollywood, and pro-life issues. Jeannie publishes a blog at