Wednesday, April 06, 2005

God, the Pope and Terri Schiavo

Allow me to rant.

I have been wrestling with a lot of issues lately in the spiritual realm. I have been putting together a deeper understanding of what it means to have faith (and I'll share it one day) and I have been watching with great interest the coverage of the passing of Pope John Paul II and have occasionally watched with rising anger the final days of Terri Schiavo.

Before I get to Schiavo, let me say this about the Pope. He was a Man of God. His passion to see God's work done and His Name upheld has been a great example to me. There are ideological differences, but I had a great amount of respect for the man and his faith. Rest in Peace and God Bless you on your promotion to Glory.

Now, Schiavo.

I am so mad about this. This poor woman did NOTHING to warrant what happened to her, and while I am sure God had a plan here, I am furious at how things happened. Terri Schiavo was not a celebrity in her life and it was only the Jerry Springer-ization of her final weeks that moved the world to the door step of her hospice. There are, I'm sure, a number of people dying a slow death across North America today. There are, I'm sure, families wrestling with, and disagreeing over, the difficult question of whether or not to end their loved one's suffering. In all of these cases, CNN is not there, nor is Fox News or anybody else. Why? Because somehow, the husband who seemed to have the decision making power had gotten involved with another woman and had started a family with her. The parents wanted control back, yada, yada, yada. So the parents fight in court. Smelling an opportunity to exploit someone for ratings, here comes the TV. And of course right behind them we have the politicians and lawyers, who suddenly smell a photo op and microphones from behind which they can get a platform to make themselves visible and air their views. Then come the grandstanders like Jesse Jackson, who scream God's name for the TV's, but I wonder how loudly they scream it in private company.

What a load of hypocritical crap.

You know, I expect the coverage that is being given to the Pope. He chose to be a public figure and his passing has implications globally. I would never dare to speak for Terri Schiavo, but I can tell you this: If something like this had happened around my Dad during his final bout with cancer, he would have told everyone to get lost. Schiavo's family should have done the same thing. Instead, they turn everything over to lawyers and politicians, who see it as an opportunity to promote themselves. If for no other reason than to let their wife and daughter die with dignity, whether by choice or by God's hand.

To anyone involved with this mess, shame on you. Terri Schiavo, rest in peace. God knows you've sure earned it.


At Thursday, April 07, 2005 7:06:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very well put Brian. I couldn't agree with you more.

At Thursday, April 07, 2005 7:09:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That was from me (Al Baker). I don't get all the proper fields for posting comments on my Blackberry.

At Thursday, April 07, 2005 9:34:00 PM, Blogger Jacob said...

I think you're dead wrong on the Terri S issue. First of all you don't know the intentions of the politicians and religious leaders (JJ aside) who tried to intervene - you are assuming the worst. I know Jeb Bush was sincerely broken hearted about the whole thing. I admired him through this.

Secondly, there was nothing written down about Terri's desire to die if she were in such a state. What if she really wanted to live on? What if she were trying to communicate that? Don't you think airing on the side of life makes sense? Expecially for a Christian? I admire the family's determination. I resent activist judges and the "husband" who numerous times was heard to ask "is the bitch dead yet" over the last 8 years and had a huge life insurance payoff waiting.

At Friday, April 08, 2005 8:09:00 AM, Blogger Brian said...

This isn't about Terri Schiavo's desire to die. I think it's more about allowing her to die with dignity in God's time. I'm sure Terri isn't the only person suffering like this in Florida or in other parts of North America and has a family struggling around them. I just find it sad that this woman was thrust into a spotlight I'm sure she didn't want during her final days. I think that this was a battle between the family, it should have stayed that way and I think all of those who cared not a whit about Terri Schiavo before TV got hold of it should be ashamed of themselves for using her as an opportunity to promote their ideas and agendas. Ask yourself this, how many of these people would have been there if the cameras hadn't? I don't ever name Jeb Bush explicitly in my post, because I think he acted properly, seeking to help someone in need without looking for a camera first. Like all other men in the Bush family, he has proven himself honorable on the grand stage. My issue is with anyone else. God will judge and I take comfort from that, but I think that if the family was really concerned for their daughter, they would have asked the media and all the outsiders to leave them to wrestle with this issue privately.

At Friday, April 08, 2005 7:14:00 PM, Blogger Jacob said...

I think you're missing the point. She was NOT dying! She wasn't even suffering! She needed food - just like you and I. This bit about allowing her to die in God's time is a false dichotomy. Everybody will die if they're not fed. I give the parents credit - I would have done the same thing if someone was trying to starve my daughter likley against her will! Life it to precious in any form. We MUST air on the side of life!

I think this is a tremendous blow to handicapped people all over - this is the beginning of a slippery slope.


At Friday, April 08, 2005 9:14:00 PM, Blogger Jacob said...

Bri,I read your blog on Terri Schiavo and the Pope. Your comments on the Schiavo case were surprising to me because it seemed like you were not aware of what the facts were. Terri Schiavo was in a vegetative state but otherwise healthy, and had no need for medical attention other than a feeding tube. She was able to communicate and even smiled when her parents were near her. Her so called husband wanted her gone and used his power negatively. Unfortunately, the courts went along with him. The media and religious leaders(Joni Erickson Tada) interest in my opinion, was probably because the courts were allowing a man to kill someone by starving them to death. That in most peoples minds, is a crime and atrocious, especially coming from her husband. The parents were desperate to save their daughter. I would've used whatever means possible to save her.

As far as Dad goes Bri, I think that this does not relate at all. God was calling Dad home. No one was taking his life from him but God. Not much you can do about that! Dad was sick and dying, Terri wasn't!!


At Friday, April 08, 2005 11:25:00 PM, Blogger Al said...

Maybe I am missing the point, but when I read Brian's post, I interpreted it strictly as a rant about all the self-serving people and media outlets that latched onto this case. Why aren't all these people and news channels, etc, seeking out all the other mis-justices that, I am sure, are happening elsewhere? Because, these people are self serving. Any chance to be in the spotlight (case in point, Jesse Jackson)

I am not sure Brian's issue is really with the parents trying to save their daughter (like I said, maybe I am missing the point). I personally do not blame them. It's the rest of the circus that resulted that is hard to stomach.

At Saturday, April 09, 2005 6:02:00 PM, Blogger Brian said...

Leigh and Duane:

At many times during the coverage of Terri Schiavo's ordeal, I found myself wrestling with two questions: What would she think of all this and what would I do if a loved one were in this condition? I applaud the efforts of those who fought for nothing more than to allow Terri to continue living. I obviously did not follow it as closely as you did, and a big reason for that was because it was, to me, a media circus where everyone who spoke seemed (to me) to only be interested in using Terri for their own self-advancement. If it's cynical, so be it. If everyone were simply interested in helping those who couldn't help themselves, then good for them and I freely admit I'm wrong. I also think I would have done what the parents did, if it were me. Like you both, I revere life and do whatever it took to keep a loved one alive until God called them home.

As far as what I said about Dad, if there was a bunch of people who surrounded him during his final days only seeking to better themselves or make points off him, he would have seen through it and told them to go away, if, of course, he didn't just start witnessing to them first :-).

I do understand where both of you are coming from and I appreciate the wrongness of the whole situation. However, I also hold the media and certain politicians, lawyers and others responsible for (likely)using Terri for their personal gain, not because they particularly cared about her or her plight.

At Sunday, April 10, 2005 2:48:00 PM, Blogger Jacob said...

Who's this "Duane" guy??


Post a Comment

<< Home