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March 20, 2005

Futile Care: The Terri Schiavo Case

Topics: News

From Newsmax comes this very important(must read) article that addresses the death movement's march against life in this country:

A young woman named Terri Schiavo is on a deathwatch through court-ordered starvation and dehydration. Her death comes courtesy of the efforts of her husband, Michael Schiavo; right-to-die activists like lawyer George Felos and Dr. Ronald Cranford; judges George Greer and Richard Lazzara; and the Florida Supreme Court and the U.S. Supreme Court, which have refused to hear the case.

Terri's parents want her to live, and after viewing the videos and talking to people, so do I. Up-to-date information is at www.terrisfight.org.

On the other hand, you can look up the Hemlock Society Web site to find fun ways to die or have someone else help you die. You can go to most university bioethics department Web sites or read learned papers written by bioethicists with Ph.D. or M.D. degrees. You will find how our society has progressed from finding humane ways for the "right to die" to good intellectual excuses for terminating others.

The various "right to die" organizations apparently are setting us up to accept the notion that it is our responsibility to end our agony at some point – particularly if we become a burden to the system, depressed, old or inconvenient. This particular right will be given to us by a doctor, nurse, medical institution, judge or relative who makes it their mission in life to dispose of us for a host of "humane" reasons.

The list of standards is growing. It is a list consisting of elements on the slippery slope from being humane to being rid of the unwanted. It has evolved from simply withholding heroic efforts to save a brain-dead or terminal human to a laundry list of whether or not we are costly to maintain, unproductive, dependent, burdensome, poor or depressed. More ...

Posted by richard at March 20, 2005 11:45 PM

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The various "right to die" organizations apparently are setting us up to accept the notion that it is our responsibility to end our agony at some point – particularly if we become a burden to the system [Read More]

Tracked on March 21, 2005 12:53 AM


Sounds like moral de-evolution.

Posted by: demonsurfer at March 21, 2005 12:06 AM

"A man convinced against his will
Is of the same opinion still."

Great article, but of course facts like these will not cause the pro-murder crowd to change their minds.

It might sway the ignorant, compassionate folks though. And that's a good thing!

Posted by: Bryan at March 21, 2005 12:07 AM


just for clarification, are you in favor of the death penalty? Are you pro-murder on that issue?

Posted by: Joey at March 21, 2005 12:32 AM

Joey, I think you're making a basic moral confusion. The people on death row are there because they killed someone else. Terri Schiavo has committed no crime and harmed no one. Why should she be killed?

Let me ask you: If you oppose the death penalty (and I assume you do), why? Is it because you believe that no one should deliberately be killed? That's fine -- that's a morally tenable position -- but it follows logically that Terri should not be killed either. Otherwise, how can you justify life for a murderer and death for a non-murderer?

Posted by: Mary Llewellyn at March 21, 2005 12:40 AM


A few things you said struck me. You said if we become a "burden to the system... or inconvenient" then the death movement says we should die. This reminds me of what happened under the Nazis and in dozens of other cases in recorded history.

If I were in Terri's condition, I would want to live.* Why? I was in a situation with a family member who was near death. The doctor said he was not expected to last the night. The doctor was very sympathetic and said he would pray for him. We gave him water when he was thirsty, and nothing more. We offered him food, but he didn't want any that night. We prayed a lot - all night. The next day, we took him outside into the Sunlight and Warmth (this was a lovely day in September 1992). On this second day he began to get better. He ate. Within weeks, he had made a full recovery - despite being given less than a week to live. He even continued working, though he rested much more than before.

The difference in that case was that we offered as much warmth and care as possible. It seemed that having positive people around speeded up his recovery.

Terri has been prohibited from being able to see photos, flowers and even sunlight. All those little things that make life worth living. Instead, she has had a 6'6" monster hovering over her on and off for the past 15 years.

What really amazes me is that Terri is in as good of shape as she was shown on the NBC Nightly News during the past few days!

*(But I wouldn't want any monsters around my bedside.)

Posted by: Ann Brown at March 21, 2005 12:42 AM


I would pose the same question to you. If you believe in the sanctity of life then you cannot pick and choose. For me, there is no clear answer in the case of Terri, but I lean toward letting her die for the simple reason she cannot sustain life on her own any longer. There is a tube surgically inserted into her stomach. I would be opposed to refusing her basic medical attention that would end her life, but this is radical. I hate to break this to you, but people are disconnected from ventilators every day in this country and allowed to die. Why is this different? I do not believe in the death penalty or in abortion. Nor do I believe that advances in medicine should be allowed to prolong the suffering of someone who otherwise would not be able to live. And please don't start with the medication arugment.

Posted by: Joey at March 21, 2005 1:08 AM

Okay, Joey, you've gotten my point. "If you believe in the sanctity of life then you cannot pick and choose" was exactly the point I was trying to make. It's just that you're reasoning from a faulty premise, namely, that Terri is somehow dying.

Terri can, in fact, sustain life on her own. She doesn't even need the feeding tube. She can swallow. This was established by one of the nurses who fed her Jello (surreptitiously, out of fear of Michael).

The people who are disconnected from ventilators "every day" (if you say so) are different from Terri because THEY ARE DYING AND SHE IS NOT! THAT'S THE DIFFERENCE! 'Scuse the shouting, but I've made this point over and over again. Terri is not "brain dead", she is not "dying", she's not even bedridden! So she can't be "allowed to die." That would imply the interruption of a natural death process, which is not Terri's case.

Posted by: Mary at March 21, 2005 1:41 AM

That audio is heart breaking. If we cannot protect the weakest among us, are we human?

Posted by: sujata at March 21, 2005 7:20 AM

I'm sorry folks, but are we really thinking of Terri? I'm a Christian, but I'm against alot of the things that are done in the name of Christiantity. Here we are fighting for the right to let someone suffer?? I thought as christians we knew that in death we will pass to life.. life without suffering .. without pain.. without the constraints that this body.. a dieing body.. WE ARE ALL IN A DIEING BODY...a body that is constantly aging and moving towards death... so yes terri's body and mind are dieing. .. That goes without question. We need to go past the question as to whether this is forcing someone to die.. because the real question is .. ARE WE FORCING SOMEONE TO LIVE?? The tape of Terri sounds like someone trapped who can not get out and who is suffering and in pain.. those are not happy sounds. If Terri can eat on her own .. then I say Feed her.. but not by a tube in her belly. What kind of a life is this that Terri leads. A life in a bed with eyes to stare into space and might for a moment see, but do they understand what they are seeing. Ears that hear, but do they understand what they a hearing .. a Voice that speaks and seems to moan in sadness. Would you wish this life on your loved one? Would you wish this life for yourself? When facing my father's sickness and death the question was always my father's quality of life. My mother had to decide whether whatever medical thing they wanted to do to my Dad in the end would he have a measured quality of life. If someone has no quality to their life would they want to live? Who here would answer YES! For me its a Big NO! There is no quality to Terri's life. Terri's husband says that she told him she would not like to be kept alive this way. Some say this was a casual conversation. Do you have a casual conversation about what you would like done in the event something terrible happens with the person who would make those decisions??? I say NO.. you would tell them exactly how you feel about it because you know that this is your chance to let them know what to do. This fight is not about keeping Terri alive .. its about letting her pass from Death to LIFE.. A life with a new body that is not bound to Hell on Earth!

Posted by: Shelly at March 21, 2005 10:24 AM

Christ never said to kill the disabled...he said to take care of them. Period. It's up to God when we meet Him. Not by forced dehydration.

Posted by: Sirena at March 21, 2005 11:09 AM

yes sirena.. it is UP TO GOD when we meet him and Terri is being kept alive by a tube doctors have put in her stomack and they are the ones playing God right now. The right thing to do is to let nature take its course.. Take the tube out and let Terri eat by Mouth and drink by mouth.. like so many who have said she can. If she can not then let her naturally go to heaven where God can take of her and give her peace. Can you not see that this women is suffering?? and don't even give me the WE Should do all we can Medically.. Because the truth is There are a lot of things we can do medically that we shouldn't do... like cloning and abortions just as a for instance.

Posted by: Shelly at March 21, 2005 12:23 PM