I was watching a talk show the other day and a civil rights advocate was on. The host was attempting to ask him a very simple question: does it matter that feeding’s being denied on the word of one individual, the husband. He refused to answer the question directly and went on to attack those supporting Terri being kept alive for not respecting her “wishes”. The question was asked again, and then yet again, and each time he attempted to avoid the question with proclamations of her right to choice being violated accompanied by attacks on the motives of those supporting Terri.
The problem I have had all along with this, as have so many others that support Terri being kept alive, is that the above interaction seems to be playing out in the broader sense. We’re skipping right to the defence of the “right to choose” without answering the hard FACTUAL questions as to whether she did choose, whether she is really in a PVS and what is sufficient evidence to make that determination having regard to the fact that if we’re wrong were killing an aware person who doesn’t want to die.
The fear that many “right to choice” people have about their cause being questioned appears to have led many to willfully ignore the facts in their support of Schiavo’s death. What is reprehensible is the media’s complicity in all of this. The result is that the mainstream population are also left with similar impressions. Very few of the startling facts we have seen in the blogosphere are being reported. Instead we get condescending images of those poor ignorant parents that just “can’t let go”, the throwing up of the hands and declaring both the parents and the husband’s love for Terri and desire to do what’s best for her. The media also seems to be playing Terri in a PVS as a certainty. As for the courts, they’re copping out, pleading “the law is the law” in applying standards that are largely designed for the protection of property, not the protection of life.
It is so wrong.