Enough is Enough!

I never thought I would say that I am ashamed to be an American….. I’ve always thought we, as Americans, lived in the greatest nation on Earth…. We are a free, compassionate, loving people, who consider ourselves as the protectors of Freedom and justice for the world… ….Or so I thought until the recent despicable chain of events going on at this very moment in Florida……

Terri Schiavo – What the Hell are we doing?….. We, as Americans, are starving a human being to death, in a hospital, in front of the entire world, and doing nothing about it…..

I don’t care about all the why’s, wherefore’s, and legal BS that led to this decision…… What I care about is how we, as a people, can actually let this happen…. Do you realize that if you starved your pet in this manner, you would be arrested?….. We treat mass murderers better!….. They are given a last meal of their choice, put to sleep so they feel no pain before they are injected with a lethal dose of drugs…. What the Hell did Terri Schiavo do to deserve this?…..

What we have done (and we, as a nation, MUST take the blame) is to condemn a human being to death…… Why don’t the judges, doctors, lawyers, politicians, and citizens admit this and execute her just as they would any other criminal (Oh, yeah, she’s NOT a criminal, I guess that’s the problem?)?… Instead, thay claim that by “pulling the plug” they are allowing this person to die a “natural” death….. I’m sorry, I don’t consider straving and dying of thirst as natural…. Why didn’t they just throw her out in the swamp somewhere and be done with it….

Can you image what it would be like to watch your son, daughter, or loved one slowly die in this manner?….. I think that I would probably be arrested for the actions I would take….


7 Responses to “Enough is Enough!”

  1. Hi, this is my first comment here, I’m a friend of John’s (I believe I met you at a hockey game in Seattle once). Forgive me for jumping into such a controversial issue…

    Schaivo is a vegetable being kept alive by artificial means. Her expressed wishes were that she not be kept alive in this state. She expressed these wishes to her husband, her brother in law, and her best friend (five people in all, I believe).

    Her husband tried for three years to get her treatment, including having electrodes implanted in her brain to stimulate activity. He went to nursing school to learn to better care for her. After many years trying everything, it became apparent that she was not going to get better, and in fact brain scans showed that her brain (the cerebral cortex) was liquified. This means the part of the brain that results in consciousness (and perhaps the soul) is no longer functioning. He decided that it was time to carry out his wife’s wishes that she not be kept alive in this state.

    Her parents (particularly her father), whom Mr. Schaivo even lived with while trying to care for her, became outraged when they learned they were not going to get a share of a financial settlement. They then went to various anti-abortion groups to fund copious lawsuits against him and have been demonizing him ever since.

    The decision on whether or not to continue life support is a difficult one that families in this country face every day. Undoubtedly it is a moral decision with many factors involved. Sometimes there are disagreements among families when these decisions have to be made, and that’s where the courts have to decide who makes the decision. There is a long legal precedent in this country of allowing your spouse to make health and life decisions when you are incapacitated, and that’s why the courts have repeatedly deferred to the husband in this case.

    You mention this would be illegal to do to a pet — this is a specious argument. A pet in a persistent vegetative state would’ve been put to sleep before. Is everyone who puts their cat to sleep when the cat has cancer a horrible person or are they being moral and ending its suffering?

    If there is any possible way to keep someone alive are we always morally obligated to keep them alive, no matter the cost or their quality of life? Even if this person will never regain consciousness? Should an alcoholic about to die from liver failure be given a liver transplant before a child who has a liver disease but could otherwise survive for a few years with dialysis? These morals issues are not as simple as the loud-mouth self-proclaimed moralists on cable news would like you to believe. There has been a ton of propaganda, flat out mis-information and lies propagated by these people who are just trying to advance their own cause and stature. And I think it’s shameful that they are using this woman in this fashion.

    I don’t want to be kept alive if I’m in a persistent vegetative state and I’ve told my wife that. It would be truly awful if my parents or other family members would try to overrule her and make an already difficult decision a public matter.

    It is nauseating to me that her parents have continued to parade this poor woman in front of the cameras and used her for their own self-aggrandizement.

    This woman is not “condemned to death.” She stated to half-a-dozen people before she was in this state that she would not want to be kept alive like this. The husband is trying to carry out her wishes, as I hope my wife would do in the same situation.

    Here’s what I think is a really interesting and balanced article that details some of the core issues in this particular case in a way that I haven’t seen on television: http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2005-03-24-schiavo-money-cover_x.htm

    Thanks for reading,


  2. This is a reply to the comment made by Todd….

    Maybe I was unclear or you didn’t catch exactly what statement I am making…..

    I stated in my original post that I was not interested in how or why the decision was made to remove her feeding tube, whether it was her decision or whoever’s….. My compliant/bitch/gripe simply stated is:

    Removal of her feeding tube will result in death…. This decision was made and done 11 days ago….. She is still alive…. If, as you say, a “pet” in this condition would be put to sleep immediately, why then has this not been done in her case?…..

    Do you actually think if she expressed the desire “not to live” as a vegetable, that she would want to put herself and everyone concerned though the agony and pain of standing by, watching and waiting for her to starve to death?….. I wouldn’t….. I would want it over with as soon as possible and be remembered as I was before whatever happened to me to bring about a vegetation condition…..

    Therefore, my statement has nothing to do with her dying, but the inhumaine way that it is being done…..

  3. What other option is there other than withdrawing the life support and letting nature take its course? My understanding is that starvation is not a painful way to die (especially to someone who has no conscious feeling), although it may not be the most pleasant for her family to endure. But what are the options?

    Are you advocating euthanasia? Well, Oregon passed a “death with dignity” suicide law a number of years back and the Bush administration has repeatedly try to interfere with the Oregon law in the courts or via the FDA and the DEA, etc, threatening doctors and such. Although I don’t believe Schaivo would qualify under this because it would need to be a consciously stated choice by her (the law has multiple levels of screening to prevent error/abuse/mistakes/whatever). So really, are you advocating that we put people to sleep? I’m not saying there aren’t any circumstances where this might be appropriate, but it seems like such a moral slippery slope. I know the Netherlands allows this in some cases, but I don’t really know the specifics of that law or how it’s applied.

    I think these are all very difficult moral decisions that our country doesn’t seem ready to deal with beyond the far-right yelling at people who would even consider the idea that the right thing to do might be to end someone’s suffering. Plus you could end up with situations like in Texas, where George W. Bush signed a law as governor which allows insurance company’s to pull life support on fully conscious terminally ill people if they’ve determined that further treatment won’t help them. At what point would you get the insurance company pulling the plug on people just because they’re costing them too much? They might cook the books (lots of book-cooking these days, you know) to mis-represent someone’s condition just because they don’t want to pay the money. Wouldn’t be the first time that a corporation allowed someone to die due to cost (exploding gas tanks, defective products, etc).

    I think it could easily be 20 years or more before our country could even have an adult conversation about this issue, the political atmosphere is so polarized with the far-religious-right wielding so much power right now. I just think it’s unfortunate that the far right seems to have appointed themselves the ultimate arbiter of morals in this country. And if the law disagrees with them then it’s all “activist judges”.

  4. Todd, let me go though all of the information you have supplied me with and give you a well thought-out in-depth reply as to my beliefs in this matter….

    I didn’t want you to think that I had forgotten or given-up on this…. As it appears, you have spent much time and effort on your comments and I appreciate your concern and active interest in these matters that affect us all…..

    I’m tied up most of today, but will work on this ASAP and get back to you…..

    Please review all of my previous statements as well as yours, as I will base my reply upon the point-of-view that you throughly believe everything you have said in your previous comments….

  5. Well, It’s over, she’s dead, and the news media, Jessie Jackson, and all the other thrill-seekers can pack-up their circus and move on to mis-report and mis-respresent some other crisis or disaster in the world,leaving us, the American citizen, to burden the blame and the shame of what happened in their wake……again!

    I stand by my original statements and after re-reading your replies more closely and the USA Today article you referenced, I am appalled and feel even more ashamed to be an American (Are you sure you referenced the right article? I can’t believe that you could’ve possibly came to the conclusions you stated in your comments from the information in that article!)….

    We apparently live in a nation with a “I, Me, Mine” mentality and allow our leaders (government and the rich private sector) to run our lives and the nation with complete “non-responsibity for their actions”. This is why I didn’t want to get into the why’s and wherefore’s on the decision to remove her feed tube. It had nothing to do at all with the wishes of Terri Schiavo!…. It was all about money, greed, and sex… ….all the things that make a GREAT news story!…..

    As I said, I re-read your replies and the USA Today article, and I will offer you questions and observations based solely on those comments and that article with my next posting on this (probably tomorrow)…. I don’t have time right now to finish them due to other commitments, but I wanted to post something on this day for obvious reasons (Her death)……

  6. I’m looking forward to MRambler’s post tomorrow. Hopefully he’ll go into more details to explain the generalities. MRambler, I’m a little confused about exactly what your position is: Should they have put the tube back or euthanized her as soon as they removed the tube?

  7. First, let me give you some insight on how I regard and handle any information the “News Media” (National and local) doles out to the “cattle” population….. If you believe everything they say without question, you fit this catagory….. I’m not saying that they are lying to us or making-up false news (although I’m sure it happens on occasion), but, the English language is one of the most prolific in the world. Just the slightest change in as much as one word can alter the entire meaning of a story….. And, then, leave out a few important facts here and there, and be a little vague on some details, and wah-la, a World-breaking news flash which favors the newscaster’s (or the network’s) own slant and opinion on the story…. The days of the “News Media” reporting “Just the Facts,Ma’am” are long gone…. This would allow you to make-up your own mind and take the appropriate action in the “RIGHT” direction…..

    You have to “Sherlock Holmes” (as I call it) the news….. I listen to the news and ask myself questions like “why”, “how”, and “what’s the motive” (to mention a few) of anything that is reported which seems to have a weird or vague twist, or have definite “Holes” (missing information) in them…..

    The best example of this that sticks in my mind is from a “Mork and Mindy” episode in which Robin Williams decides he wants to be a news reporter, and relates to Mindy a story about a fire that takes place late at night….. A fireman sets up a ladder to a second story window, breaks the window, battles through the smoke, pulls a sleeping little girl from her bed, exits through the window, and saves her life… A truly heroic story with a happy ending, but without much “sensationalism”…. Mork’s revised news-breaker went something like this: “YOUNG GIRL TAKEN FROM HER BED”!…. Late last night, a big, hairy, burly man with a red cap used a ladder and an axe to break into a little girl’s second story bedroom…. After forceably removing the sleeping girl from her bed, he exited through the window and disappeared into the smoky night…. Same story – Same facts, but what a difference in the conclusions a reader would draw!….. Granted, this is an “Over the Edge” example and was done in the sit-com arena, but this skit comes to my mind from time to time as I watch the news unfold and I sometimes wonder if we are not getting closer to this type of reporting than we know?……

    What does all this have to do with the Terri Schiavo story, you ask?….. Since you now have a small sampling of how I view reported news, I hope that it will help you to see how I arrived at the conclusions I will present to you in my next comment to this post…..

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