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Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Cruel and Unusual

I hadn't planned any more Schiavo posts, but this Washington Times Editorial brings up a good point that I had been thinking, but hadn't mentioned before:

The law, that vital foundation of our civilization, seems incapable of getting to justice of any sort in this sad case. If it is justice to end her life, the law has so developed, that a painless injection would be illegal, while the only legal method — starvation and dehydration to death — would be unconstitutionally cruel and unusual punishment if it were inflicted on a convicted mass murderer.
I know that there are strong feelings about euthanasia, but I think most of us could agree that it would be better for Terri Schiavo (and others like her) to die of a lethal injection than slow starvation. It seems clear that both are morally equivilant in terms of acting to end a life. If letting her starve is just than lethal injection must be, and if lethal injection is not moral, than neither can her starvation be moral. It is hypocrisy to delude ourselves that one is 'active' and the other 'passive.' These choices are both fully in our control and we are fully cognizant of the effects. The only difference between the two is the time it will take and the (possible) pain the victim will suffer. The editorial makes several other points that are worth reading, although I don't agree with all of them.

6 Comments:

Blogger Random Gemini said...

I agree that allowing someone to starve to death, when we have the means in our power to give them a simple, quick end that is less traumatic for the family is cruel and unusual.

3/23/2005 08:18:00 AM  
Blogger MacBoar said...

Isn't this getting just too much. I can't listen to Talk Radio nor the nightly fare of cable news without the screeching . . .

I understand Terri will be give a sedative to ease the pain of dehydration.

3/23/2005 04:32:00 PM  
Blogger Random Gemini said...

I hadn't heard that she would be given sedatives to ease the pain. I'm not sure that she is even aware of any pain to be honest, from everything I have seen on her state, she's not aware of much.

I understand where you are coming from. I find myself unable to avoid blogging on this topic because there are so many levels in it that I just find offensive. In fact.. I think it's a good idea for me to blog them.

3/23/2005 11:51:00 PM  
Blogger Mystic Knight said...

It's interesting if they are indeed giving her a sedative. This would seem to indicate to me that they are worried that she must have some feelings or a sedative would be unnecessary.

And again I say, if they even have a thought that this is affecting her, it should not have been done to her in the first place.

I do agree that if the time comes to end a life because of a situation like this, a lethal injection would be the most humane way to accomplish this.

3/24/2005 10:39:00 AM  
Blogger tsykoduk said...

It really sickens me as well. This should be a private matter between the family and the husband. The federal goverment should not be involved, nor should the state goverment (beyond the basics of social services).

It seems to me (from my research) that Mr Schiavo has spend the malpractice money in a fair manner, and that he took a very active role in her care.

So, let the bloody family fight it out, A cage match.. yeah..

:)

3/24/2005 11:15:00 AM  
Blogger Andrew Watkins said...

At the risk of sounding ruthless, I am going to have to agree, and say that I really can't see a difference, fundamentally, between either action, and I guess that means I support euthenasia, under the right circumstances.

3/24/2005 02:40:00 PM  

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