Father Who Robbed Bank To Pay For Daughter’s Chemo Should Not Go To Prison For Life

Twenty-three-year-old Brian Randolph is in police custody after having robbed a Vibe Credit Union in South Lyon, Michigan. Randolph says that robbing the bank was his only option after his insurance abruptly canceled on him and refused to answer his calls or his daughter’s mother’s calls, and he could no longer afford his one-year-old daughter’s chemotherapy treatments — which cost thousands of dollars a month.

Randolph’s daughter Brailynn has a form of eye cancer called retinablastoma, which could kill her if not treated. The family had previously set up a GoFundMe account to help them pay for Brailynn’s treatment (because of course insurance doesn’t cover all of it), but it wasn’t enough, and Randolph felt that this was his only option to save her life.

He is now being held on $500,000 bond, and faces one count of armed robbery (although he only said he had a gun, we don’t know that he actually had one) and another count of bank robbery — which could mean life in prison.

This is fucking immoral. No, not Brian Randolph’s actions. His actions were understandable to anyone who has ever faced the loss of a loved one, particularly a child. The insurance companies are immoral. The fact that we live in a country where robbing a bank was the only option this father felt he had to save his daughter’s life is what is immoral. I’m sorry, that is what’s wrong. If that family lived in any other industrialized nation, this would not have happened. 

Our health care system, our government, committed an act of violence against Brian Randolph and his daughter. Why are we living in a country where anyone has to crowdfund cancer treatment for a one year-old child? Where are all the pro-life assholes when this shit happens? Where are they? Why aren’t they out on the street advocating for single-payer health insurance? Where is this deep love they have for babies when they’re out of the womb and dying of cancer?

Answer me this. What exactly has a one-year-old with rich parents done to deserve cancer treatment that a one-year-old with poor parents has not? Essentially, by not having universal health care (sorry, Obamacare is not enough), we are saying that a rich child’s life and health is more valuable than that of a child whose parents don’t have unlimited funds. That is not right.

Brian Randolph should not go to prison — and should certainly not be sent to prison for life. What is this? Les Miserables? He is not a person who is a danger to anyone. He was a desperate person in a desperate situation that this country put him in. Trust, there is no part of me that is sitting here thinking Oh! But the poor bank!

Did he break the law? Sure. Attempting to rob a bank is against the law. (In America, banks rob you.). But I don’t think someone should spend the rest of their life in prison because they were trying to save the life of their daughter. That would be far more immoral than what Brian Randolph did.

[ABC News]