Thursday, March 31, 2005

What We're Up Against: Part Forever 

Terri Schiavo is gone; she has finally been allowed to enter fully into that peace that surpasses all understanding.

MSNBC is still with us, like a Biblical plague: you can choose which one strikes you as most apposite from this list of the ten plagues about to be featured prominently in Passover seders across the country.

In the ll:OOAM EST hour of MSNBC, Bob Kur, standing in front of the White House and discussing what impact Terri Schiavo's death might have on the President politically, reports that said President has deeply felt moral and religious beliefs about what was the right course of action in this case, and even though polls don't show a majority of Americans saw the issue the same way, Republican strategists are sure those same Americans will respect the President for his steadfast adherence to his own set of moral values. He then goes on to point out there were two sides to the question of her death; was it really a mercy killing, or was it, as the President believed, something much worse?


I have not been able to replicate Kur's exact words, except for "mercy killing," which was the term he clearly affixed to the opinion held by 65 to 85% of Americans who felt that the Florida court system had fairly and rightly adjudicated the conflicting claims by Terri's husband and her birth family, and that the intrusion into a private family matter by the executive and legislative branches of both the state and the Federal government had crossed a line that shouldn't be crossed in a democratic republic like ours.

Euthanasia is illegal in every state of these United States, including Florida; Oregon, please remember, has a PAS law, which is not euthanasia. But that is how Bob Kur framed the issue - that those Americans who were ready to accept that the Florida judiciary had carried out its duty correctly in adjudicating what Terri's wishes were in regards to being kept alive by medical means in a state similar to the one she has been languishing in for fifteen years now, were, in fact, in favor of offing Terri by means of a mercy killing.

As Bob Somerby so often and so incomparable says, try and make yourself believe that a major media White House correspondent can be that dumb and that lacking in knowledge of the basic facts of the issue he's talking about; oh, that's right, it's not that hard, is it? Not if you've been paying attention to the way big media operates, and has been for the last several decades.

I agree completely with Xan here, and what she says about Tom DeLay is just as true about what the right wing has revealed about itself in the Schiavo case. Liberals and Democrats should not let them run away from the implications of their own stance, and should not be afraid to frame this, and the corresponding issues of the right to choose and judicial activism, as issues on which a majority of Americans share our views.

To be continued

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