Wednesday, March 23, 2005


The Schiavo case is a tragic story, any way you approach it and it’s sadder still that we are drawn into a partisan political mugging involving her and her family. Most of us of a certain age have been confronted, some in a glancing way, others head-on, with the effects of a medical ‘miracle’ that left a family member or friend living, but in a state of great incapacity. Most of us find it hard not to feel empathy for both Mr. Schiavo and for his wife’s parents, as well as for Ms. Schiavo herself. It’s hard to know if medicine has done a favor to many it’s ‘saved’, much less what the right thing to do is for the patient. Sympathizing with the families doesn’t make it any more acceptable to bring the Congress into the Schiavos’ hospital room, pretending to help.

Only the despicable circumstances of our current political discourse allow this intensely personal struggle to become another ‘opportunity’ for the culture warriors. However much the morality thugs ‘know’ about the case, one thing is sure. Most of them have scanned only a brief thumbnail of the volumes presented in court since Ms. Schiavo’s care became a legal issue, years ago, and have no idea what the humane or respectful thing is to do for this woman. That appears not to have been a problem for those who voted to intervene, or for the President, who has presided over wars and executions, but ran to the White House in the dead of night to sign the legislation, to tout his position that 'all life is sacred.'

It’s a tragedy and a spectacle. A spectacle that should illuminate just how low these hooligans will stoop.

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