ARC's 1st Law: As a "progressive" online discussion grows longer, the probability of a nefarious reference to Karl Rove approaches one

Sunday, March 20, 2005


Wizbang Blog has a great post on the Terri Schiavo case. Does Michael Schiavo's recollection of Terri saying during a Melrose Place episode that she wouldn't want to live on life support classify as "Clear and Convincing Evidence?" (BTW, what MP episode was this?) Apparently, the lone judge that made that decision thought so... and it's haunted this case ever since. As I've said previously (and as the President echoed in his recent statement), when there is a doubt as to the wishes of the disabled, err on the side of Life.

As Peggy Noonan discussed on Friday, (like it or not )there are political ramifications involved in this matter. (Frankly, saving Terry's life is the penultimate concern for me and most of the people that share my position. However, once this matter is resolved and Terry is either being given appropriate treatment or whether she finally is killed, those on both sides of the issue will look at what happened, who should've acted and didn't, what the final decision means to the rest of us, etc.) Anyway, Peggy makes some interesting points.

The supporters of Terri Schiavo's right to continue living have fought for her heroically, through the courts and through the legislatures. They're still fighting. They really mean it. And they have memories.

On the other side of this debate, one would assume there is an equally well organized and passionate group of organizations deeply committed to removing Terri Schiavo's feeding tube. But that's not true. There's just about no one on the other side. Or rather there is one person, a disaffected husband who insists Terri once told him she didn't want to be kept alive by extraordinary measures.

He has fought the battle to kill her with a determination that at this point seems not single-minded or passionate but strange. His former wife's parents and family are eager to care for her and do care for her, every day. He doesn't have to do a thing. His wife is not kept alive by extraordinary measures--she breathes on her own, is not on a respirator. All she needs to continue existing--and to continue being alive so that life can produce whatever miracle it may produce--is a feeding tube.
Here I think Peggy is missing the fact that many on the Left (such as Oliver Willis, Jeffrey Feiger of Kevorkian fame) are actually on the side of Michael Schiavo and hoping that the tube is pulled - either concerned that those defending her life are Christians (and therefore any position they take must be wrong) or concerned about implications about assisted suicided and/or abortion. As I've stated here, the Left is a big tent Party of Death (with one exception):
  1. Want to kill a baby up to the 9th month of pregnancy? Dems - it's your right! make a statement to the phallocentric patriarcy and stand up to the man!
  2. Want to give people who are hopeless the ability to terminate their life? Yes! Let's not restrict that, or those fundies might have some tractio on 1 above. (Oh, and let's not give those who have serious illnesses therapy and counseling, explaining to them that they still have a valid and useful role in society... nope, let's just call Dr Kevorkian!
  3. Death Penalty for the most heinous murders? YOU FASCIST!!! We must protect even those whose actions disgust us! Heck, we should let them free and give them counseling and see how they were oppressed by our society
So, yes - Michael's zeal for killing his wife is of big concern to me, but there are those supporting him on the "other side of the aisle" who have a similar zeal, although it's more idealogical than personal. Peggy's message is that even from a self-interest, political perspective - our government leaders should act and err on the side of Life
So let me write a sentence I never thought I'd write: Politicians, please, think of yourselves! Move to help Terri Schiavo, and no one will be mad at you, and you'll keep a human being alive. Do nothing and you reap bitterness and help someone die.

This isn't hard, is it?
At the heart of the case at this point is a question: Is Terri Schiavo brain-dead? That is, is remedy, healing, physiologically impossible?

No. Oddly enough anyone who sees the film and tape of her can see that her brain tells her lungs to breathe, that she can open her eyes, that she seems to respond at times and to some degree to her family. She can laugh. (I heard it this morning on the news. It's a childlike chuckle.) In the language of computers she appears not to be a broken hard drive but a computer in deep hibernation. She looks like one of those coma cases that wind up in the news because the patient, for no clear reason, snaps to and returns to life and says, "Is it 1983? Is there still McDonald's? Can I have a burger?"

Again, life is mysterious. Medicine is full of happenings and events that leave brilliant doctors scratching their heads.

But in the end, it comes down to this: Why kill her? What is gained? What is good about it?
and on this question, the Left is put on their heels, mumbling about Terri's wishes (for which we do not have clear and convincing evidence).

As I've said... when in doubt, err on the side of Life. Hopefully, this action by Congress and the President will save her life in time.

There's a Blogs for Terri site which has a ton of information...

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler