Carol Platt Liebau

Monday, March 21, 2005

Here is a piece by Linda Stasi in The New York Post. It's the story of her experience with a mother who was disconnected from "tubes" (whether for breathing or for eating/drinking isn't clear).

The piece concludes with Stasi writing:

"I know one thing now. The government has no business in our homes or in our lives or in our deaths. Death is a family matter. Congress needs to stay in its own house on this one."

And that's a sentiment with which, in many cases, I would agree. Especially in one like Stasi's -- where her mother's wishes were known to the entire family, where there was a living will, where death was inevitable and reasonably imminent.

Sadly, the Schiavo case is much different. No one but her husband (yes, the husband who is now off living with another woman and his two children by her) ever reports having heard Terri's wish not to have any measures taken to keep her alive. There is no living will. And so Terri's family doesn't have at least the grim satisfaction of Stasi's -- knowing for certain that they're acting in accordance with someone's wishes to let her die.

There's one more wrinkle to this entire issue. I don't understand why it's so important to allow people who are condemned to death to rot away from hunger and thirst. We don't allow animals or serial killers, even, to die that way. Someone please explain why it's so much worse to give an innocent a shot of morphine to ease suffering than it is to stand back and watch a helpless, incapacitated person hunger and thirst to death.

Finally -- all the liberals who support the "right to die" but not the death penalty: Would it make it better if we didn't "execute" prisoners -- just locked them in a cell with no food and no water?


Blogger Saganashkee said...

Lord willing this will turn out right - Terri will get the tube back in, neurogists will do wonders for Terri to give her some semblance of a conscience life, her jerk husband will end up in jail after evidence is found that Terri was abused, and laws will be passed to get the government out of the business of deciding who lives, who dies, and how they die. Whew! Now all we have to worry about is the health insurance companies, or worse yet government controlled single payer health non-paying insurance for every American whether you like it or not.

7:44 PM  
Blogger jchess said...

Remember all this come the next election cycle: The Democrats support abortion, partial-birth abortion, and now death by starvation.

James C. Hess

4:47 AM  

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