"There is always a philosophy for lack of courage."—Albert Camus

Friday, March 25, 2005

Killing the Innocent, Sparing the Guilty—Who Is Responsible

Yesterday, federal district court judge James D. Whittemore, in denying the appeal of Terry Schiavo's parents that the state require that their daughter's food and water be resumed, said, "the plain language of the 14th Amendment contemplates that a person can be deprived of life so long as due process of law is provided."

That is certainly correct.

It is, however, a perverse society indeed that rules that every vicious murderer under the age of 18 merits constitutional protection and cannot be executed, but we must allow the killing of a disabled woman whose husband claims she was appalled by the conditions of characters in bad TV movies a couple of decades ago.

We set off down this path, of course, when it was decided that the Constitution required state governments to allow doctors to kill children in the womb.

We have been led all the way to this current Mount of Olives by the nation's courts. The truly great shame, however, is that our legislators and executives have concurred in this judicial usurpation of their powers.

They are every bit as responsible as the courts. Therefore we, who elected them, are fully responsible for the present awful situation.

Florida governor Jeb Bush has tried to work with the courts to resolve the problem, but the Florida judges continue to insist that the state's courts' previous decisions in this matter have been unerring. A governor, however, has broad powers, and state statutes allow for the removal of a person who is under the care of another who has neglected them. The deliberate denial of food and water is worse than neglect. The only people who would be angry if Gov. Bush intervened to save Terri Schiavo's life are his most implacable enemies.

If Jeb Bush does not intervene, George Bush should do so.

If neither of those men musters up the courage to save Terri Schiavo, then truly we, the citizens of this nation who elected the governors, legislators, judges, and presidents who brought us to this pass, are ultimately responsible.

On this day of all days, Terri Schiavo's plight should be an arrow to the conscience of every American.

7 comments:

Tlaloc said...

"The truly great shame, however, is that our legislators and executives have concurred in this judicial usurpation of their powers."

There has been no usurption except by congress and the last attempt by Jeb to usurp the powers of the court. This is precisely within their purview.


"Florida governor Jeb Bush has tried to work with the courts to resolve the problem, but the Florida judges continue to insist that the state's courts' previous decisions in this matter have been unerring."

And it never occurs to you that they just may be right. the judiciary is the one branch of government the most insulated from the mob. The most insulated from the kinds of pathetic emotional appeals and base slander attacks that have moved congress to forget their place. Thank god one branch of government is actually doing it's job.
That congress would hold a special session to "save" Terri Schiavo is a grotesque charade. Do they show any such diligence in regards to the millions of americans in poverty? Who are starving not out of choice but out of a revolting system of wealth distribution? no. Instead they've worked hard to give businesses and the wealthy yet more breaks and perks. Don't pretend for one second their obvious political pandering has even a shread of decency attached.


"The deliberate denial of food and water is worse than neglect"

If it wasn't her choice, yes. Since it is by the best system of determing such, no.


"The only people who would be angry if Gov. Bush intervened to save Terri Schiavo's life are his most implacable enemies."

Actually, and in a surprising show of good faith a number of conservatives have shown disgust at how quickly republicans abandoned any pretense of federalism and "the sanctity of marriage."

Jay D. Homnick said...

This is not a response to whatever tlaloc wrote, because I averted my eyes not to read it; there is corruption aplenty in my envirins and I have no need of importing reinforcements.

This is a response to Mr. Karnick, who is absolutely correct.

Here is what should have happened IF WE REALLY LIVED UNDER THE SEPARATION OF POWERS provided by the Constitution. The minute Judge Whittemore ruled after an hour and a half, FBI agents from the Executive Branch of government should have come and arrested him. He violated an explicit law of Congress calling for a de novo review, something that cannot be done in ninety minutes when there are fifteen years' worth of records. He should have been charged like a common criminal, and the case should have gone to the next judge in the lottery.

Jay D. Homnick said...

oops, I meant "environs".

Tlaloc said...

"This is not a response to whatever tlaloc wrote, because I averted my eyes not to read it; there is corruption aplenty in my envirins and I have no need of importing reinforcements."

Is it Blissful, like they always claim?

S. T. Karnick said...

Jay, I fully endorse your decision not to engage in debate with the sort of person who claims that anyone who does not care to listen to him is ignorant.

Any experienced exorcist will tell you: never engage in conversation with the demon.—STK

Tlaloc said...

"Jay, I fully endorse your decision not to engage in debate with the sort of person who claims that anyone who does not care to listen to him is ignorant."

Willfully not reading a contrary opinion certainly seems to be a celebration of ignorance, don't you think?


"Any experienced exorcist will tell you: never engage in conversation with the demon.—STK "

Maybe that's because the demon makes just a little too much sense. Isn't it wonderful to just assume your side so frightfully righteous that you need not be bothered to determine its actualy accuracy? Sometimes reading opposing opinions give us that double plus un-good sensation that we may be wrong.

S. T. Karnick said...

"Sometimes reading opposing opinions give us that double plus un-good sensation that we may be wrong."—Not in the case of anything you've posted here, O Evil One.—STK