The Passing Parade: Cheap Shots from a Drive By Mind

"...difficile est saturam non scribere. Nam quis iniquae tam patiens urbis, tam ferreus, ut teneat se..." " is hard not to write Satire. For who is so tolerant of the unjust City, so steeled, that he can restrain himself... Juvenal, The Satires (1.30-32)

Friday, March 25, 2005

SCHIAVO: First and foremost, let’s be clear as to what we are talking about here. The crux of the matter is this: Terri Schiavo, a severely brain damaged woman, is starving to death under the cover of law. Keep that squarely in mind, because that and only that is reality; everything else is just words. Remember George Orwell’s Politics and the English Language, in which Orwell pointed out that “in our time, political speech and writing are largely the defense of the indefensible.” What is happening now as I write this, at 10:11 am on March 25th, 2005, is that a woman who cannot defend herself or make her wishes known is dying at the behest of a husband with an irreconcilable conflict of interest. The lawyers telling you otherwise, the doctors who say that Terri’s passing will be painless, the liberal legislators with a newly discovered and hitherto unsuspected love of federalism and state's rights, are all trying to sugarcoat the poison; they want, in Orwell’s words, “…make lies sound truthful and murder respectable.” They are trying to ease your conscience about what is happening to Terri Schiavo. Let’s try something here. Say this to yourself: I think that allowing brain-damaged people to starve to death is a good idea. Say it out loud if you want to. Give it a try.

Okay, if that didn’t sit well with you, congratulations; if it did, think about what you just said about yourself. Think about this, too: Terri Schiavo is not going away. If you think for a minute that other people will not regard her case as a legal precedent for ending treatment to the brain-damaged, Alzheimer’s’ patients, and others in need of long term treatment then you are seriously deluding yourself. Sooner or later, given the longer and longer life spans made possible by advances in medical science, we will all be Terri Schiavo, and my advice to you is the same advice I’d give to Michael Schiavo: be nice to your kids, or someday they’ll cut you the same slack you cut Terri.


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