Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Terri Schiavo

This is such a sad case. It's not only that that the poor woman has suffered for so long, and that the family faces a difficult dilemma, but just as much the fact that the case is now being played out as a public spectical.

The interference of Bush, and the Republican dominated House is shameful. What should have been a family matter, and at very worst a legal issue to be worked through in a measured fashion, has now been escalated to a national-level political football. So much for right-wingers believeing that the state should keep out of people's lives.

You can never answer these kinds of questions on behalf of others, but I know that if my wife or I were ever in a persistent vegetative state, with serious brain deterioration, were reliant on artificial mechanisms to stay alive, and the weight of credible medical evidence was that recovery was not on the cards, we would want the other to let us go - or at least be the one to make the decision.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Now, now. It’s not very appropriate for someone soon to be a Member of Parliament to be commenting on another nation’s domestic policy, is it? You’d be jumping up and down if Republican Congressmen made negative comments about the policy of your beloved Labour Party, wouldn’t you?

But anyway, let’s compare this with the Lesley Martin case, (which happened on your lot’s watch) shall we? Here we have Lesley’s mother expressly wishing that she wants to die, Lesley carries it out and you people jail her.

In Terri’s case, we don’t know what Terri’s wishes are. Her husband wants to pull the plug and we have the federal government saying, “Hang on. If we don’t know what she wants, we should err on the side of keeping her alive.” That’s the whole reason your crowd is opposed to the death penalty, right? Because you can never be certain? (Note there’s no talk of jailing the husband. But if this were happening in New Zealand, he would be.)

The only cause for complaint here is the blurring of federal and state legal jurisdictions. But I don’t think that’s you’re problem. I think you’d be quite happy to see that boundary trampled for a “good cause.” You might also want to check how many Democrats opposed this “shameful” bill in the Senate. It was exactly zero.

michael wood said...

In your desperate bid to take potshots at me and the NZ Labour Party you've left me quite confused as to what your view on this issue actually is. Please enlighten us...

The Lesley Martin case is of course completely different. You state that "you people" jailed her. Nonsense - the rights and wrongs of euthanasia aside, the government had nothing to do with the Lesley Martin case. She publicly confessed to a crime (which she then tried to deny in court), and was successfully prosecuted by the police.