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March 26, 2005

Interesting Articles on the Schiavo Case

Usually, I turn away from anything to do with the Terry Schiavo court battle and drama over her emminent death. I believe it is a personal, family tragedy that had already been fully litigated before Congress stepped in to create a United States Law that only applies to one individual and her family. Nevertheless, something about Andrew Rice's description of today's frontpage coverage of the case in Slate's Today's Papers, grabbed my attention.

Although the articles I read today allow me to have a lot more sympathy for the Schindler family (despite the fact that her father tried to use the "Holocaust victim look-a-like" card recently in interviews), I believe ultimately its in Ms. Schiavo's best interest to let her go in peace.

In "Behind Life-and-Death Fight, a Rift That Began Years Ago," Abby Goodnough explains the history of the clash between Michael Schiavo and Robert and Mary Schindler. Lynn Waddell and Dennis Blank contributed to the article, which appeared on the cover of today's NYT. The details disturb me - if I were to pass judgement, I would say Mr. Schiavo was a horrible husband and Terry's family should have helped her get away from him, rather than turn a blind eye to the eating disorder that magically turned her from an overweight teenager into an underweight adult. It was probably her eating disorder that made Terry potassium deficient which led to her current, vegetative state.

But really, its not for me to judge. Clearly, I have made some judgements - like most Americans - but in the end, my opinion should not and does not matter.

The LAT fronts, in the Column One feature, "Life or Death: Love's Choice - Two mothers, each acting out of compassion, reach different decisions after their children lapse into vegetative states." by Stephanie Simon. It's a harrowing tale. In my mind, the best part is that neither mother judges the other, or thinks they can pass judgement in the Schiavo case.

Finally, WaPo fronted an analysis of the politics involved. "Schiavo Case Tests Priorities Of GOP," by Shailagh Murray and Mike Allen points out all of the reasons the Republicans were wrong in pushing their special legislation through the House and Senate. This was a clear case of Wag The Dog and Rouse The Base, to get the heat off of The Crook In Chief (aka House Majority Leader Tom DeLay) and spotlight the My Values Belong In Your Personal Life Cred of Mr. I Steal People's Money And Call it Healthcare (aka Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist whose family made its fortune overcharging the government and individuals through their hospital empire) and Mr. I Think I Should Make All American Women's Health Decisions Because of My Moral Superiority (aka Senator Rick Santorum) and Mr. I Need to Make A Name for Myself (aka Florida freshman Senator Mel Martinez).

Terry Schindler Schiavo, I hope you rest in peace.

Posted by cj at March 26, 2005 10:54 AM

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