Life, or Something Like It


I haven't followed the case of Terry Schiavo, the brain-damaged woman recently put back on feeding tubes by an eleventh hour intervention on the part of Florida's legislature, as closely as some have. But like plenty of folks in the media, I've been spammed with a few dozen e-mails daily, ranging in tone from mildly hysterical to totally bughouse. And while I don't have enough information to really judge the case on the merits, I can't help but think that an ideologically driven campaign based on a spate of one-sided emails and talk radio rants probably provides less sound basis for a decision than the multi-year process of evidentiary review undertaken by several courts. That aside, it's surely grotesque that the law makes an ultimately spurious distinction between "killing" and "allowing to die" in cases like these, such that slow starvation is the only acceptable means of death here.