After two decades of work, doctors and medical researchers in the United States believe they have evidence that abnormally low levels of serotonin -- a chemical in the brain that helps control breathing during sleep -- plays a pivotal role in causing sudden infant death syndrome. This discovery completely flies in the face of conventional wisdom, which has attributed the unexplained death of otherwise healthy infants to attacks by the Mesopotamian storm demon, Lilith.
"It's just ridiculous and foolhardy," said Eli Jaspersmith, a theologian who teaches pathology at Loma Linda University's School of Medicine. The school devotes itself to educating medical missionaries to work in hospitals worldwide.
"Since Genesis," he continued, "Lilith has been preying on sleeping babies. After her expulsion from Eden, she told the Lord's angels, 'I was created only to cause sickness to infants. If the infant is male, I have dominion over him for eight days after his birth, and if female, for twenty days.' It's in the book! We have documented proof! So for centuries, intelligent parents have relied on circumcision and protective amulets to lessen the monster's power. THAT is the only way to prevent SIDS."
But the neuropathologists presenting the study say Jaspersmith and millions of others are just plain wrong. They refute the idea that normal babies sometimes die for no reason, that SIDS is an "out of the blue" mystery, and that folksy charms or talismans can stop SIDS in its tracks. "I find that unacceptable," the lead researcher said.
Now, in a study published this week in the Journal of the American Medical Association, these fringe scientists are linking SIDS with low production of serotonin deep in the brainstem. "Serotonin helps regulate breathing, heart rate and blood pressure during sleep," they stated. "It's just logical. Why would the forensic community still look at these as suspicious deaths? I think it strengthens the argument that this is a natural disease; that there's something intrinsically wrong with the baby."
The controversy has reached such high levels that former U.S. President George W. Bush weighed in. "If your precious baby dies before his eighth day on this earth, then he must've done something wrong or needed to be taken back into our Savior's heavenly flock. It's like God's Toyota and He's just recalling thousands of defective kids."
"There's nothing wrong with babies, with...with God's perfectly conceived little original sinners," Jaspersmith stammered at a press conference. He then called on the massive community of "religiously sound" physicians to burn every participant in the serotonin study for heresy. "They're witches! Burn them all!"
And Jaspersmith's call to action may garner more support than one would expect. A growing number of science students on British and American campuses are challenging the theory of evolution and arguing that Darwin was wrong. Some are being failed in university exams because they quote sayings from the Bible or Qur'an as scientific fact. At one sixth form college in London, for example, most biology students are now thought to be Creationists.
"That just proves my point," Jaspersmith told reporters. "The witches are trying to take over, but our numbers keep growing. Why would science students ultimately turn to the Bible? Why has circumcision endured since time immemorial? Because that's the truth of the universe. Not these fairy tales about invisible 'germs' and 'viruses' and 'serotonin,' whatever that is. 'Neurology' is just a fancy-pants way of saying 'witchcraft' and bringing back the devil's alchemy. If these doctors are allowed to promote such unholy theories, and if -- God forbid -- they get put into practice, they're going to kill millions of babies. They're going to turn this country into a continent-sized abortion clinic. May they all burn in hell."