The Schindler Family
The seeming tug-of-war between the Schindler family and Michael Schiavo is drawing to a close, as the starvation of the Schindler family's daughter, Terri, is in its second week. I had a relative who was very sick and towards the end totally refused food, ,and it took just about two weeks for them to die. There was suffering, no person with a shred of honesty in their body can really believe that to not be so, just to defend their point of view on what is happening to Terri. Terri, however, did not refuse food, it was refused to her. This is to our shame, and this is why the Schindler family has fought so hard and so long for the life of their daughter. Michael has fought for the death of their daughter, his wife, under questionable motivation, that the courts have supported, and now he has his wish. She should be dead very, very soon, and with her death, the Schindler family will enter another painful time of their lives. For how do you reconcile your heart and beliefs, as well as your love for your daughter and the protection of her life, with her court-mandated death by starvation?
The courts have failed both the Schindler family and Terri with this ruling and her pending death. In a sense, we as a nation, have also failed them. For we too measure someone's worth by their physical capabilities, looks, potential, and forget about the right of that person to their life, no matter what value we place on it. The Schindler's recognized the worth of their daughter's life and were prepared to care for her as she lived out the rest of her natural life.
We have made a big mistake here, for there was no compelling evidence that Terri specifically would have wanted to die rather than be brain-damaged and eating via a feeding tube. I have not read every single word of all the motions and case related material made available via Adobe Reader by her family, but it is only Michael's word on a vague, not even specific, recollection of a casual conversation where he recalls Terri saying she wouldn't want to be kept alive artifically. In additon to that, the judge and anyone reading this stuff can see the timeline of Terri's injury, the malpractice lawsuits, Michael's neglect of Terri, her parent's subsequent legal challenge to remove him as guardian due to his negligence, and then his court case saying Terri would want to be dead instead.
The Schindler family fought the good fight, for the right reasons, and deserve our respect and support.