Alaska Republican Says There May Be a “Social Advantage” to Child Abuse Deaths

This week, an Alaskan Republican congressman startled his colleagues by arguing for the possible economic benefits of child abuse deaths. State Representative David Eastman’s remarks went viral after he spoke at a meeting about the effects of traumatic childhood experiences on children throughout their lives. “When child abuse results in the child’s death, it’s obviously not good for the child, but it’s a benefit to society because there are no government services or other demands for the duration of that child’s existence,” Eastman explained. When challenged if he just stated that child abuse deaths may be “beneficial” to society, Eastman responded, “I’m speaking in terms of dollars.” Instead of the child’s death being a net cost to society, he stated, “It is occasionally argued that it is really a cost saving because the child will not require any of the government services to which they would otherwise be entitled and need due to growing up in such an environment.”