Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Are You Sure You Want To Side With The Likes Of Randell Terry?

[note: I assume this was posted by the SG, even though it is unsigned]

"The Left's gleeful, pro-death stance"? "Willful pursuit of a woman's death by starvation"? If Jeb Bush takes the crown in '08 it's because of statements like these. That's because the Right has mastered the technique of marshalling outrage over cultural and "moral" issues, to generate votes, while advancing policies that undermine every aspect of our lives, including how we end them. When you take away the ex post facto maneuvering of Congress, the subversion of the judicial system, and the political opportunism (this may be planet earth, but it still doesn't make it right), you know what you're left with? You're left with the legal guardian of an incurable woman attempting to carry out her wishes, which have been affirmed by 19 judges and whose ethical basis is agreed upon by the majority of Americans. So let's take this point-by-point:

1. She's not terminal, but she stated that she would not want to be kept alive by artificial means, and courts from the state to federal level consistently reaffirm this.

2. The state of Florida expanded their definition of life support in 1999 to include feeding tubes. Note that this link came from the Schiavo's own web site, so even they define a feeding tube as "life support."

3. "If we assume that those who advocate her death are correct, Schiavo is completely unaware of her situation and is thus incapable of suffering physically or emotionally." So does that mean we should force her to live via life support means?

4. Conservative talking points will get you no where. No court has found any evidence that due process was denied, that's why no court will overturn the earlier ruling.

5. Actually, that's the problem. Schiavo is being treated differently by conservatives in Congress who are coming dangerously close to creating bills of attainder, this is, legislation directed at a single individual. Again, 19 judges have upheld Terri's wish not to be kept on life support as advocated by her legal guardian, her husband.

6. Saying that the call for states rights in this case makes it analogous with segregation is absurd. Why do you think SCOTUS refused to hear this case? Again, because no constitutional rights were violated. What Congress is attempting to do is circumvent the state judicial system. Are you advocating that?

7. It's a tactic to obstruct the outcome of this case in an effort to pander to the Right, nothing more.

As this excellent opinion piece in Salon points out, this is bigger than the "haters", the "God-bashers". It's about whether we allow the emotional intensity of a single case to override, and ultimately erode, our objectivity as codified in our legal system. And when Schiavo finally does expire, the Right will most certainly be there to sanctimoniously proclaim their righteous indignation and chide the Left for it's ghoulishness. Despite the will of our laws and despite will of most Americans.

--MC No Shame