Thursday, March 24, 2005

NOW I get it 

Pandagon: The ghouls and vampires who oppose choice
Well, I'm finally starting to understand why the anti-abortion people are leading the "culture of life" charge to try to get the feeding tube reinserted in Terri Schiavo.
Like abortion, its not about life, its about choice. And once again, its not "what choice" but "whose choice" that is basically the issue.
I have argued on this blog that many of the people who say they are anti-abortion are actually just anti-choice -- what they are actually opposed to is allowing individual women to choose for themselves whether or not to get an abortion. They usually concede that if her reasons are "good enough", like that the pregnancy was the result of rape or incest, or that carrying the baby will kill her, then a woman could get an abortion in that situation. In other words, they think its OK for a woman to have an abortion if a committee of doctors OKs it , but not if the woman decides for herself.
Parenthetically, this is why I was so pleased to see the Conservatives agree last weekend that they would not adopt a policy supporting new abortion legislation -- they finally accepted that people can be pro-choice without being pro-abortion.
Getting back to the Schiavo case, I see the same "anti-choice" approach as it taken toward abortion. The basic attitude seems to be that Ms. Shiavo's own choice must be disregarded, ignored, marginalized, disbelieved or overturned. This choice has been confirmed by legal evidence presented in court, reviewed and cross-examined, evaluated by lawyers and by Ms. Schaivo's own guardian, and accepted as factual by judge after judge -- first, that Ms Schiavo is and will always be a vegetable, and second, that she would choose to die rather than to continue to live in such a condition. Instead, the argument seems to go, the choice should be made by her parents or her sister or her brother or the congress or Jeb Bush or the Supreme Court -- anyone, really, who would base the choice on their own mystic, magical, wishful thinking rather than on Ms. Schiavo's choice. Baiscally, they are writhing and turning to avoid accepting that she made her own choice.
And in a postscript -- I read the saddest comment on a blog today. The commenter said she had worked in the same workplace as Ms. Schaivo's brother and that he was a sad man, having spent his entire adult life, 15 years, embroiled in this case. I wonder if her parents or brother or sister ever considered whether Ms. Schiavo herself would have wanted them all to suffer for so long over her twisted body and empty mind.

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