Tom Szasz on Terri Schiavo


Reason "Hero of Freedom" and Contributing Editor Thomas Szasz weighs in on the Terri Schiavo case in this post-election postmortem column by Worldnet's Ilana Mercer. Says Szasz:

In the Schiavo controversy, the courts upheld the fiction that Terri's autonomy required that she be medically killed, in her own best interest. In view of the fact that we live in a country whose laws prohibit suicide and often deny patients with terminal illnesses the pain-killers they need, the doctors' and courts' sensitivities to patient autonomy were, in this case, touching to say the least. Michael requested the court to attribute to Terri the de facto right to physician-assisted suicide. That this decision favored Michael's personal and financial interests, and the taxpayers' economic interests, was purely coincidental.

…the principal issue in the Schiavo case – besides the economics of Terri's care – was the conflict between two parties both claiming undying love and loyalty to her: her husband who wanted her dead, and her parents who wanted to keep her alive. In this circumstance, the commandment against killing should alone have been enough to tilt the balance in the parents' favor.

Those comments are bundled within Mercer's own analysis and I'm not sure where/when Tom said/wrote them. But it's a different take than you get from most libertarians. Whole thing here.