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badice.com ~ travel musings for the masses

I am going to go out on a limb here and maybe be a little controversial. Right now there is a big debate over the Terri Schiavo case and who has the right to say whether her feeding tube is removed or not. To me this is a non-issue. She is still married and by law her husband has the legal right to remove the tube. I know that people want to use the fact that he is seeing another woman and such to say that he should not be married to her and therefore have no right to remove the tube. But who are we to determine that they should not be married. At what point do we retract ourselves from other’s lives and let them choose their path.

On one hand I can see where Terri Schiavo’s parents are coming from. They love their daughter and do not want to see her pass away. However, to me, Mrs. Schiavo is already dead, mentally at least, and maybe legally. When your heart stops you are not declared dead, actually your heart could still be beating and you are declared dead. The brain is a hospital’s main way of determining the time of death and when a person has actually been lost. Terri Schiavo is showing just enough brain activity to not be declared dead. The doctors are saying the chances of her ever coming out of the vegetative state are very slim to none.

The basic question then comes down to right to life. I agree with the principle that people (babies, children, adults, etc.) have a right to life. I don’t agree with abortion but this case really has me torn. Terri Schiavo, to me at least, is already deceased. Her brain is unable to function enough to support itself and from the medical side of things that is teetering on death.

I know that this is an extremely controversial issue but it really struck me today that people are throwing themselves into the middle of this like they have something at stake. If I ever was in a similiar vegetative state I know that I would not want to be like that forever, until the money ran out. I know I cannot speak for Terri but I can speak for friends who wear “Do not resuscitate” bands on them so that if they are horribly injured they do not have to endure what Terri Schiavo is enduring right now (even if she cannot cognitively grasp it).

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