People who say that the government has no business interfering in a private decision such as removing Terri Schiavo’s feeding tube somehow have no problem with a squad of policemen preventing her parents (or anyone else) from giving their daughter food or water.
“Do those who want to keep the government out of private decisions think that the police are not the government? Do they think that the judges who authorized this are not the government?
Sadly, this is not the only Alice-in-Wonderland confusion of words and deeds in this tragic case.
We are being told that Terri Schiavo was being “allowed” to “die a natural death.” Such an argument might make some sense if this were a terminally ill person. But Terri Schiavo died from anything other than a lack of food and water, from which any of the rest of us would die.
She did not die a natural death. She was being killed.
What is being kept alive artificially is the liberal media version of events. One side of this story is being repeated endlessly, as if it were gospel, but anyone saying something different – including doctors and nurses who actually have seen or taken care of Terri Schiavo – is unlikely to be reported.
The nature of death by starvation and dehydration also is being depicted as “gentle” in the words of The New York Times – the same New York Times which in 2002 reported starving people in India dying “clutching pained stomachs.”
This “gentle” death is the story line in the liberal media, but a priest who actually saw Terri Schiavo told a wholly different story of her visibly deteriorating condition. If this is such an easy death, why not videotape it and show those of us who are less enlightened how mistaken we are? Instead, there was a ban on anyone photographing Schiavo’s death.
Despite the oft-repeated claim that Schiavo is being “allowed” to die, supposedly in accordance with her own wishes, the only person who says that these were her wishes is the one person who wants her dead and who personally stands to benefit – her husband, Michael Schiavo.
When Sean Hannity said on the Fox News channel’s “Hannity & Colmes” program, he was assured by a lawyer defending the removal of the feeding tube that Michael Schiavo was not the only one to hear his wife say this. But when Hannity demanded to know the name of just one other person, the lawyer followed an old lawyer’s maxim: “When your case is weak, shout louder!”
Many seem certain that Terri Schiavo was vegetative, did not understand what was going on around her and couldn’t respond. But Carla Sauer Iyer, a nurse who attended Terri for more than a year, contradicted all of this. She has painted a different picture of Michael Schiavo than the one he presents to the courts and to the media.
The nurse’s sworn statement reported to the police that she had found Terri in both medical and emotional distress after a closed door visit by her husband – and that she also found a vial of insulin, as well as needle marks on Terri, after Michael Schiavo’s visit.
Terri Schiavo was killed because she was inconvenient to her husband and because she was inconvenient to those who do not want the idea of the sanctity of life to be strengthened and become an impediment to abortion. Nor do they want the supremacy of judges to be challenged, when judges are the liberals’ last refuge.
Thomas Sowell’s column is distributed by Creators Syndicate.