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Obama regrets not helping Michael Schiavo

Discussion in 'Political Discussion' started by 3 to be 4, Apr 27, 2007.

  1. 3 to be 4

    3 to be 4 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    gee, why should mentally challenged people or people with other disabilities worry about this? in this country if they dont scrape you out before you're born, you're protected right?

    NOPE


    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    NEWS ANALYSIS
    Was Terri Schiavo's death assisted suicide?
    Florida woman referenced in coverage of high-court hearing Oregon law

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Posted: October 6, 2005
    1:00 a.m. Eastern

    Editor's note: The following analysis is by Diana Lynne, whose powerful, comprehensive book on Terri Schiavo's life and death, entitled "Terri's Story," is now available at WorldNetDaily's online store.
    By Diana Lynne
    © 2005 WorldNetDaily.com

    Assisted suicide is illegal in Florida – as it is in every state but Oregon – yet the name "Terri Schiavo" frequently crops up in press reports about the Supreme Court reviewing Oregon's assisted-suicide law, suggesting many viewed the case as either an assisted suicide or "mercy killing."



    In 1990, Terri Schiavo suffered brain damage after mysteriously collapsing at home at the age of 26. Pinellas-Pasco County Circuit Court Judge George Greer ruled in 2000 she was in a persistent vegetative state, or PVS, from which she would never recover. He affirmed that decision in 2002, siding with the opinion of two expert witnesses solicited by Terri's husband, Michael Schiavo, and one court-appointed neurologist. Dozens of medical experts subsequently filed sworn affidavits disputing the PVS diagnosis, but these opinions were never heard in court.

    Most news organizations led readers and viewers to believe the autopsy "confirmed" the PVS diagnosis. Neuropathologist Dr. Stephen Nelson, who assisted medical examiner Dr. Jon Thogmartin, reported the post-mortem findings, such as a significantly shrunken brain, were "very consistent" with PVS. However, both Nelson and Thogmartin emphasized that PVS is a clinical diagnosis to be made on a live patient, not dead. Upon questioning by this writer at a June 15 press conference announcing the autopsy results, Nelson admitted he could not rule out the possibility that Terri Schiavo was in a minimally conscious state, or MCS.

    Although Terri Schiavo could breathe and maintain blood pressure on her own, doctors believed she required a feeding tube to receive nourishment (although the last swallowing test administered to her was in 1992).

    In 1998, Michael Schiavo filed a petition to remove Terri's feeding tube. On the basis of his testimony and that given by his brother and his brother's wife that years prior to her injury Terri had made casual statements indicating she didn't want to be kept alive by artificial means, Greer ordered the feeding tube removed and also barred oral nutrition and hydration.

    The Schindlers, Terri's parents and siblings, claim the Schiavos' testimony was fabricated and testified the devout Catholic believed in the sanctity of life and would want to live even in her impaired state. Their seven-year court battle failed to persuade Greer, and the feeding tube was removed on March 18. Terri Schiavo died of dehydration 13 days later.

    Other media outlets, including National Public Radio, Agence France-Presse and Knight Ridder Newspapers also mention assisted suicide and Terri Schiavo in the same breath. The obvious conclusion that can be drawn by this linkage is that the fine-line distinction between removing a feeding tube to cause death by dehydration and prescribing a lethal dose of drugs is lost in the minds of some journalists and many Americans across the country.

    Both acts result in hastening death. In Terri's case removing the feeding tube hastened death by a decade, according to the estimate of the medical examiner who performed her autopsy.

    The Supreme Court, under the leadership of the late Chief Justice William Rehnquist, held the opinion in 1997 that there is a difference between assisted suicide and pulling feeding tubes. While rejecting arguments in Washington v. Glucksberg that obtaining assistance in committing suicide was a fundamental liberty interest protected under the 14th Amendment, the Court reaffirmed its 1990 Cruzan opinion that Americans have a constitutionally protected right to refuse lifesaving nutrition and hydration. The justices held that this right stems from the centuries-old common law rule that forced medication was considered a battery.

    "This court disagrees with the Second Circuit's submission that ending or refusing lifesaving medical treatment is nothing more nor less than assisted suicide," Rehnquist wrote in the majority opinion in Vacco v. Quill. "The distinction between letting a patient die and making that patient die is important, logical, rational and well-established."

    Florida's high court concurred in 1990 when it ruled elderly stroke victim Estelle Browning had a constitutional right to refuse food and water, according to her wishes as outlined in an advance directive. Browning died, however, before she won the right to have her feeding tube removed. As he argued in Browning's case, right-to-die attorney George Felos maintained Florida's constitution provides that Terri Schiavo had a privacy right to control her own body. In the absence of an advance directive, that control was ceded to her court-appointed guardian husband.

    Florida legislators who crafted a state statute that allows people in terminal or end-stage conditions who've signed advance directives to choose death over medical intervention, and which outlines a protocol to follow for ending the life of incapacitated patients who have no advance directives, took pains to add a disclaimer to their legislation which reads:


    Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to condone, authorize, or approve mercy killing or euthanasia, or to permit any affirmative or deliberate act or omission to end life other than to permit the natural process of dying.

    The withholding or withdrawal of life-prolonging procedures from a patient in accordance with any provision of this chapter does not, for any purpose, constitute a suicide.
    Incidentally, the protocol for ending the lives of incapacitated patients who do not have advance directives was amended in 1999 while Terri Schiavo's case was pending to include those in PVS, and the definition of life-prolonging procedures which can be removed from patients was expanded to include artificial nutrition and hydration – feeding tubes.



    Despite the judicial and statutory clarifications, non-lawyers and lawyers alike feel the distinction made between removing a feeding tube and suicide or mercy killing amounts to ethical hair-splitting.

    Rutgers Law School professor Norman Cantor offers an intellectual distinction: Suicide involves initiation of a self-destructive action while refusal of treatment involves letting a fatal affliction follow its natural course. This distinction is easier to grasp in a scenario where a cancer patient opts to forego chemotherapy. It's much less clear when the "medical treatment" declined or removed is a feeding tube.

    Therein lies the rub for many critics of Terri Schiavo's death. Is a feeding tube medical treatment or just basic care? Is brain damage a "fatal affliction" or a disability?

    The language used greatly matters in this case, as pro-euthanasia forces have learned over the years. Hemlock Society founder Derek Humphrey prefers the term "assisted dying" over "assisted suicide," but laments on his website that the news media are fixated on "suicide." Barbara Coombs-Lee, co-president of Compassion and Choices, the right-to-die organization sponsoring legislation to legalize assisted suicide in California, similarly urged the news media last week to avoid the term "suicide" because public opinion research indicates it "biases audiences against patients and their families."

    "'Suicide,' or 'assisted suicide,' or 'physician-assisted suicide' are loaded, pejorative terms that paint terminally ill patients in the same negative light as terrorist bombers," explained Coombs-Lee, according to Business Wire.

    Felos was quick to cry foul when a reporter characterized the court-ordered death of 41-year-old Terri Schiavo as euthanasia. Still, the suggestion of "letting Terri die" was widely promoted. The phrase connotes compassion with the act of removing the feeding tube.

    However, Terri Schiavo was neither terminally ill nor suffering. Her treating physician testified she was relatively healthy.

    Disability-rights organizations bristled at the notion a relatively healthy woman who suffered brain damage but was not dying should be "allowed to die." They view the assertion as an outgrowth of deep-seated bias against people with disability in America. Sixteen advocacy groups such as Not Dead Yet filed friend-of-the-court briefs opposing Terri Schiavo's death.

    Not Dead Yet also filed a brief in Gonzalez v. Oregon. Advocates fear legalized assisted suicide fosters the "better dead than disabled" mentality.

    For those who see no moral distinction between assisted suicide and feeding-tube withdrawals, the bigger battle for disability-rights and civil-rights advocates may lie with states like Florida where such deaths occur by the thousands without the explicit, uncontested consent and the active participation of the patient. Causing the death of incapacitated patients when there's reasonable doubt over whether they wish to die may pose a greater threat to civilized society than stepping out of the way of terminally ill adults bent on putting an end to their suffering.

    In the words of Rehnquist, "The distinction between letting a patient die and making that patient die is important."


    Diana Lynne
     
  2. PatsFanInVa

    PatsFanInVa PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Talk about "scraping."

    Regardless of what you've seen on "Veggie Tales," someone in Terri Schiavo's unfortunate condition does not, in fact, represent a moral dilemma. It is only the arch-sentimentalist and the obscurantist who wants to make it so.

    Fantasize all you like about the "implications" of an essentially dead individual being removed from life support. Thousands of people sign DNR (Do Not Recussitate) orders, and others go so far as to wear an equivalent bracelet, specifically to avoid the indignity of being kept like an extremely expensive potted plant at the end of their lives. No, to my knowledge, Terri Schiavo did not sign such an instrument. But by the time the decision was made, there was no Terri Schiavo to sign one. (Which is why people do it ahead of time... because they know people living in fairy-tale land will attempt to make "moral" hay of a very unfortunate situation, made possible only very recently by advances in technology.)


    PFnV
     
  3. wistahpatsfan

    wistahpatsfan Pro Bowl Player

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    #75 Jersey

    :rofl: LMFAO!.........
     
  4. wistahpatsfan

    wistahpatsfan Pro Bowl Player

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    Not the Schiavo case! :eek:
    No-o-o-o-o-o-o! :eek: :eek:
     
  5. 363839

    363839 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Sounds like rationalizing for the sake of convenience.

    Your statement "essentially dead" is not only an assumption but the very term leaves a lot to be defined. What is "essentially dead"?

    While I agree, a person who is in a vegatative state should be allowed to die as humanely as possible.
    I would not call denying the patient food or water until she dies 13 days later very humane.
    Michael Schiavo should have had no more say in his x wifes treatment as he had remarried and had children. He was not paying for treatment so Terri was absolutely none of his business.
    The parents were taking care of her and they should have been allowed to continue to care for her.
    Terri Schiavo was quite awake and she would light up when her parents entered the room. She had no motor abilities but she did follow an object, although briefly with her eyes.
    She did not want to die like that.
     
  6. scout

    scout Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    #15 Jersey

    THAT IS TOTALLY FALSE. You can believe whatever you wish, but your credibility ranks even with the Oakland Raiders offense when you post this type of garbage. Michael Schiavo was not re-married until January of 2006, thus was not an X. The autopsy concluded that she was in a constant vegetative state, finding that she had massive and irreversible brain damage and was blind. From her husband's account, she did not want to live like that. But of course you know better judging from your facts.
     
  7. Pujo

    Pujo Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    The only problem with that is that it isn't true. Michael Schiavo didn't remarry until January 3, 2006. He was Terri's husband until she passed away.

    Quite awake??? Are you nuts? After she died, her autopsy revealed that her brain had atrophied to half its size. She was long gone.
     
  8. 363839

    363839 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I saw a clip of her being tested for awareness or something like that.
    The Doctor would try to get her eye fixed on an object and than move the object to see if her eyes would follow and for a split second they did but then she lost focus. It seemed inconclusive to me. But she was awake for this test. Her eyes were open.
    As far as her brain size goes, I don't know what to tell you about that, admittedly but there are many species that have even smaller brains than half of terrys' and they don't want to die. Weak argument I admit but do you have a link, pujo?
     
  9. All_Around_Brown

    All_Around_Brown In the Starting Line-Up

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    You saw the same clip Dr. Bill Frist used to get the GOP to demonstrate at the hospice. Which was a propaganda piece that her own doctors felt was disingenous.

    Your assessment is the same as Frists...conclusions made from afar and totally devoid of medical relevance.
     
  10. 363839

    363839 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Fair enough, ABB.

    But 13 days to the end. No food or water...

    There had to be a better way than that.

    You guys are ok with that?
     
  11. Pujo

    Pujo Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    The problem is that America doesn't allow assisted suicide. If it did, it wouldn't have taken 13 days.
     
  12. All_Around_Brown

    All_Around_Brown In the Starting Line-Up

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    She wasn't eating food. She could not swallow. There is this thing called an IV....

    And Pujo is spot on. It wouldnt have been inhumane if Kevorkian weren't destroyed by the radical religious right.
     
  13. QuiGon

    QuiGon Banned

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    Ah yes, the Michael and Terri Schiavo case... IIRC that all went down before I was posting to this forum... I am not going to rehash old arguments but, believe it or not, my opinion departed from that of the majority of my conservative brethren in that case.
     
  14. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    Ah, crush some innocent skulls, starve some innocent people to death, who cares? Now, want to execute a serial killer, hold on a second here!

    :D I'm being a dink.
     
  15. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    Yes, but even if it did, in the Schiavo case, how would one determine that Terri wanted to die? Personally, I think people should toss themselves off bridges whenever they deem fit. I have no issues with someone ending their lives if they want to. My only problem would be with them taking others with them against their wishes, or doing it in a fashion that would burden others. Now, this by no means should be construed as me condoning suicide, I'm simply saying that people should be free to do it.
     
  16. 363839

    363839 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I have no problem with that kind of assisted suicide. The patient asks for it because of the pain they have to endure. I agree Kevorkian should not be in jail. That is, if he still is.
    But a case like this is not so clear cut. For me, anyways.
    Very sad situation for all involved.
    I still think that there may be more to the story than we'll ever know.
     
  17. Harry Boy

    Harry Boy Look Up, It's Amazing PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I have watched two very close realtives wither and die, screaming in pain, when they got to the point that Morphine or nothing else helped it made me wonder about God and how good he was, it would seem that he might just be a "sadist", but they say he moves in mysterious ways his wonders to perform, I will be joining him in a few years and I have some things to ask him about all this sh!t.

    If I were to meet Dr Kavorkian face to face I would get on my knees and kiss his ring, I would bathe his feet, I would even satisfy him sexually should he so desire.
    :bricks:
     
  18. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    So Terri told you she wanted to die? Is the ability to eat on your own now the barometer of who is entitled to live and whom isn't? I guess then my 2 year old nephew could be left to starve to death with no punishment to no one? My sister-in-law and bother told me that's what he wants. Would that apply? (I'm simply presenting alternative thought here) Again, I have no problems with people, you or I, deciding that the Tobin Bridge was a good place to skinny dip from on our way home tonight, but that isn't a one size fits all for everybody.
     
  19. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    There is no clear cut answer to that specific case. I myself am unsure of what's right or wrong there. Personally, I think the husband has say, but as is usual, the case presented some strange circumstances in light of that. The one thing I do know, is that the manner with which she was killed, was more barbaric a means we use to dispose of the most vile in society. That bothers me. Otherwise, for those who observed, take notice, and prepare yourself accordingly.
     
  20. wistahpatsfan

    wistahpatsfan Pro Bowl Player

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    Fakrissakes, Harry!:eek:
    It's a little early to be drunk and gay! (not that there's anything wrong with that) Whahappen? The neighbor's wife shut you off? JEEZ!
    Luckily for you there's no law against consentual sex between two adults. Good luck with Jack!:bricks:
     

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