The Blog of Dabido (the Baka one). Everything in this blog is copyrighted. Copyright 2004, 2005, 2006 by D. Stevenson.

01 April, 2005

Terri Schiavo

Three hours ago Terri Schiavo died in Florida. One can't help but wonder (In the words of Francis Schaeffer), "What ever happened to the Human Race?" In the US, in 1990, the Courts there passed a law which gave the Guardian the right to decide whether a brain damaged person could pass on lifesaving medical treatment. The US already had a law which allowed people the right to chose to pass on life saving medical treatment. This was extended to people who were incapable of deciding. In this case, there was a ten year battle where Michael Schiavo won the right to be the Guardian of Terri. It was his decision that Terri would have wanted to have died. I have to ask the question, is this the correct way to make decisions for those who cannot make the decision themselves. After all, people who have been severly brain damaged and lying in comas for years, have come out of it in the past. They have then gone on to live productive lives. One case comes to mind, where a guy in South Africa was in a coma for years. When he came too, he could tell the Doctors everything they'd been discussing while he was in his coma. He had heard everything they'd been talking about. The Doctor's were amazed, as they'd considered him a no hope situation and wanted to turn his life support off. It might be true, that in most cases, the brain damaged person does not recover. Does this give us (any of us) the right to remove the slim possibility of them recovering? If they had of removed the life support system of the guy in South Africa, then he would had died. Personally, I would not want anyone, court appointed or not, making that sort fo decision for me. Then comes the claim that many witnesses (including a Police Officer) heard Terri say that she wanted to live. Why wasn't this investigated more? Surely if Terri had made this statement, it was enough for a court to decide that she was coherent enough to make her own decision. Michael Shiavo's lawyers claimed it was 'hopefullness' on behalf of the parents. Still, the claim needed to be investigated. I think one of the things that should have been done, was to put the people in question through lie detector tests. I am not talking about polygraph tests which have been proven to be unreliable. I mean through some of the more modern ones which have come about. One of the ones currently used, and acceptable in courts, is where they test your voice for frequencies we have no control over. We don't usually hear these frequencies either with the human ear. When telling the truth, these frequencies are there, but when telling lies, the frequencies are not. The computer software, however, can detect them and tell the courts/police if you are lying or not. After all, if all the witnesses are telling the truth, then what we have in fact witnessed, is the US commiting murder of one of it's subjects. The sad fact though, is in the state she was in, Terri really didn't get a choice as to what she wanted. Maybe Michael did do what she wished, but maybe he didn't. Was she even in a state where she was aware that such a decision needed to be made? If the witnesses are correct, then she was, and she didn't want to die. Jeb Bush made some moves to make the State her Guardian. If he had of been successful, then she would still be alive today. The other thing which worries me, is the psychological feature humans have, of projecting their wishes onto others. Could the real issue have been Michael's wish for Terri to die so that he could have closure and move on? I think there is a real possibilty that this is in fact what happened. Michael could very well have projected this onto Terri deciding that this what he honestly believed she wanted. Was this ever considered? If so, how did the courts prove that this wasn't the case? I also believe it was very sad that her parents were barred from entering the room when she died. They'd been told she was about to die, and spent an hour trying to get permission to access the room. It worries me much, that they were denied this access. It obviously shows there was more to this than just the issue of Terri. Did Terri really want to die? Maybe the rest of us will never know. One thing for sure though, is she will never get the chance to make any form of recovery like the guy in South Africa or other patients have who have been in similar situations. We really just watched the US courts decide who could and couldn't play God with a person life.