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Thursday, March 24, 2005

Denied.

It just absolutely bends the mind. First, the Supreme Court declines to hear the case (given, that isn't very surprising), and then Governor Jeb Bush's motion to take custody of Terri Schiavo is denied by none other than Judge Greer (who I am such a fan of at this moment). What drives me absolutely wild with rage is the DCF (the Florida Department of Children and Families), according to Wizbang, completely missed the boat (along with the Schindler's original attorneys when this case first came about) in taking custody of Terri when they filed their appeal over the original restraining order by Greer yesterday, as an appeal would have granted an automatic stay of order so that they could get in there and do something. As Michael Schiavo's lawyer points out (in his own smug mind, to be sure), the DCF may not have realized that when they filed the appeal, and thus didn't know they could do something. So, wonderful job in screwing that one up, DCF. I doff my damn hat to you for that one.

As I continued to read the Fox News story, I come across something absolutely snide from the lawyer who successfully argued a woman should be starved to death:
"I sincerely hope the great focus and media attention on this case can peaceably settle as people move into this weekend in a frame of contemplation," Felos said. "I hope the parents do not keep pursuing fruitless legal options to the end — their time would be better served in reflection."

Unbelievable. How about you reflect on your conscience the fact that you have successfully argued Terri should die a death that we don't even consider for anything else? This isn't even the goddamn "euthanasia" movement you're behind - she isn't getting an injection that would let her die peacefully! This is "starve a woman to death because she's inconvenient to Michael's ends, despite numerous offers of people to take over her care". Good job, I hope you feel so damn swell about yourself as you cash your paycheck.

Meanwhile, my ability to tolerate the continued existence of the ACLU - which obviously isn't reading the same Constitution that I am - continues to wane with this:

Howard Simon, executive director of the ACLU of Florida, said at the heart of the case, which was often overshadowed by a nasty family feud, was the tragedy of one woman's life.

"This is a horrible situation and there are no winners," he said. "This case is really about what Terri would have wanted."

There could have been plenty of "winners", Howard, had sanity and common sense prevailed in this case. Michael could have turned over the care of his (otherwise ex-) wife to her parents and family, who state time and again that they want nothing more than to take care of her, and moved on with his life. Terri's family, subsequently, could provide the love and care for her that Michael stopped giving when she was "dead to him" 15 years ago. Lord knows, there's probably no shortage of donors that would give money to the cause of Terri's therapy and care. It is really that simple. I don't see anything about this being a "nasty family feud" except that it was made to be that way by kicking aside basic humanity and morals to jockey to have a feeding tube removed. I'm sorry, but openly advocating starving someone to death is not the best way to having a civil level of discourse!

If the Schindlers wanted to take care of Terri, and are willing to sign over the funds to Michael anyway (as they have stated publicly numerous times), what the hell is the problem in turning over her care? Are you starving her to prove a point - that she's your property or something? This is an insane example of what happens when guardian custody goes completely amok - you have insanity like this.

It's just disgusting.

*UPDATES*

I'm sure many are aware of this now, but I figure I may as well post it anyway -

The Schindler family is back in court, asking for a temporary restraining order after Governor Bush's efforts to get Terri under state custody fell through. The order would be issued pending a new hearing over their contention that Terri's due rights process and religious beliefs were being infringed by a court order to essentially starve her to death. I think you might want to toss in "cruel and unusual punishment", the fact they haven't been given a de novo trial with the (unwritten intent of the Congress') string attached of a restraining order in the meantime, and the fact that it's court-ordered homicide, among other things. As I and others have said before, taking just the tack of "violation of due process" is a halfway manuever, you need to present more than a few things at trial!

If, I hope to God, they get that restraining order and a de novo trial (which they were supposed to get in the first place!), I hope they call enough witnesses in their favor to sink a cruise liner. This ridiculous reliance by the federal courts on an obviously-biased judge's "fact finding" is beyond bewildering - it enters the realm of the insane. The "experts", meanwhile, have launched an armada from their armchairs about how Terri's ability to track objects and faces, respond to audio cues, and do very simple manuevers, was all the signs of an otherwise-braindead person. I must be too, because I can do all of those things and yet, shit, I still forget what I did in the third grade or, for that matter, almost all of high school. I must be in a PVS, too!

Biting sarcasm aside, I challenge one of those "experts" to get off their ass and prove it - show up in court and prove one way or the other that she really is gone and everything she does on those videos is involuntary. They are relying on barely minimal tests and what the court-appointed doctors are saying (as if their findings couldn't possibly be colored by a judge with a stake in the very hospice Terri is staying in, oh nooooo). I am sick and tired of all these "experts" blathering on in an effort to fulfill their own self-importance when, quite frankly, they don't know a thing about Terri Schiavo's case, seeing as none of them has actually conducted the tests or examined her. Were they to do it now, they'd find a tired, starved husk of a human being, the product of a callous court order, and would probably lunge to the same conclusion they had before. To think they call themselves doctors - they're not interested in finding the truth or helping Terri get better, they're more about getting television face-time. It fills me with anger to think I used to trust the system to do the right thing by everybody, not just the ones that can talk.

Truly disappointing.

*UPDATE 2*

Now I've seen everything - Ralph Nader joins the "Save Terri" camp. As Ace astutely points out, he is neither a sneaky Christian nor a fiendish Republican. Saving the lives of the innocent does cut across the political aisle.
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