Thursday, May 06, 2004

Months ago, a judicially active court ordered brain-damaged Terri Schiavo to her death.

As you might recall, however, Terri shows all sorts of signs of consciousness, reacts to her parents, is not in a persistant vegatative state according to the testimony of a dozen doctors, and has never been given one minute of rehabilitative therapy. No one can be sure of the reason for a court to order her death, but some of us are cynical enough to think that it might have something to do with the fact that her legal guardian is her husband Michael, who now has two children by another woman, stands to make hundreds of thousands of dollars if she dies, and is coincidentally demanding that Terri be starved to death.

In America now, of course, the law is only what a judge says it is. So while we have laws against murdering people, it's okay if a judge orders it to be done. Michael Schiavo found a judge, George Greer, who was willing to order Terri's starvation (against the will of her parents, who are willing to take responsibility for her care). Her feeding tube was removed, with nurses ordered not to sponge Terri's face for fear some of the liquid might make it into her mouth.

The people of Florida were outraged at this act of pure judicial fiat, with a federal judge assuming the power of life and death over a woman who's never been accused of any crime. They rose up and demanded a law to protect Terri from this court-ordered, unlawful execution. Governor Bush, working with the State Legislature, enacted a law ("Terri's Law") that ordered her feeding tube restored. It was a case of the people using their constitutionally mandated power to check a runaway judicial executioner.

But as we said before, the law now in this country is whatever some judge says it is, Constitution and representative government be damned.

Today, yet another judge decided that the will of the people means nothing and overturned the law they duly enacted. One judge on one side, millions of other people and a life at stake on the other side. And the judge, accountable to no one, issues his decree of death.

The governor is appealing, but of course that won't matter since it only will take one judge to disagree with him. It has always been a matter of when (not if) under our judicial monarchy.

Michael Schiavo will act to remove Terri's feeding tube as soon as he is allowed to. Doctors estimate it will take about 10-14 days for her to dehydrate and starve to death. Maybe a day longer if some of that water accidentally drips into her mouth.

UPDATE: The headline on CNN's homepage right now says "Judge strikes down Gov. Bush's brain-dead woman law." Of course, she's most certainly not brain-dead. No one even claims that. But if saying it a few times makes it easier to kill her, what the heck.

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