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News Schiavo allowed to die - Falwell forced to live. Where is the justice in this world?

  1. Mar 29, 2005 #1
    As some of you may know, Jerry Falwell is in the hospital, afflicted by pneumonia, on a respirator, and according to a few different news reports, in "critical but stable condition".

    Now, as you all probabally know, Mrs. Schiavo was in a fairly "stable" condition before nutrition and hydration was denied to her, and wasn't nearly in any sort of "critical" condition, as she had been pretty static for quite a number of years. All that was being done to keep her alive was feeding and nutrition - pretty mundane means of keeping someone alive, giving her something that everyone needs.

    I've heard many people trying to judge whether or not it's right to keep Mrs. Schiavo on life support based on whether extrordinary or simply ordinary methods are being taken to preserve her life, with the implication that it was more justified to allow somebody's life to end if you were using extrordinary means (such as dialysis or an artificial heart machine) to keep them alive, as opposed to the ordinary means of simply feeding them when they're unable to feed themselves.

    Another manner of discussion I've heard about Mrs. Schiavo is whether or not it's acceptable to end a life based on the quality of it. Since Mrs. Schiavo essentially has no quality of life - it has been argued - there is no reason to keep her alive, since she is essentially just one big chemical reaction going without any real purpose and little or no conciousness at all.

    So Mrs. Schiavo was in a non-critical condition, experiencing no pain at all, and merely being fed to keep her alive, and yet it was ruled by a court that she shouldn't have any more food or water given to her.

    And yet, Mr. Falwell is in a hospital, in critical condition, presumably experiencing immense physical discomfort from his severe case of pneumonia, and being kept alive by the extrordinary means of a respirator.

    I have no idea how a random woman in Florida can be allowed to die because she doesn't have the neurological functions to feed herself, but a man (who is clearly brain-dead anyway) like Falwell can be kept alive on a respirator, despite not having the respiratory functions to breathe for himself.

    Schiavo can't eat, nor recover the ability to eat, so she is deprived of food. Falwell can't breathe, and some bastards somewhere out there decide to keep him alive, totally ignoring the fact that he actually COULD recover.

    Why couldn't his followers just accept the will of God and let their leader fall when he was destined to, instead of intermeddling in the workings of God on earth?

    The world is so insane...
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2005
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 29, 2005 #2
    You should visit the other Schiavo threads. Read a little about the case.
  4. Mar 29, 2005 #3
    For what reason? So I can have one set of people telling me she's completely brain dead and she would've wanted to die, and have another set of people telling me she's concious and aware and didn't want to die? Have someone tell me "My version of reality is true, and his version of reality is false"?

    There are thousands of people dying all around the world every day, I can't see why I should pay any special attention to this one woman while not really paying too much interest to most of the other deaths that go on in the world every day.

    However, with the precedent set by allowing Mrs. Schiavo to die, I just can't see why we can't act the same way with Mr. Falwell.
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2005
  5. Mar 29, 2005 #4
    Then why vent? Why waste your time telling everyone how you feel about a situation that you know and admit willful ignorance to? Why should you care about Jer on one hand (enough so to start this thread) while snubbing Ms. Schiavo with the other?

    Here's the short easy answer: Ready?

    Terri Schiavo did not want to be kept on life support--her wish has finally been granted.

    Jerry Falwell does want to be kept on life support--his wish is being granted.

    The concept is not that hard to grasp.
  6. Mar 29, 2005 #5
    The venting wasn't brought on by anything to do with Mrs. Schiavo, but the contrast between Mrs. Schiavo's situation and Mr. Falwell's situation.

    And what knowledge do you claim to have about the case of Mrs. Schiavo? What reliable sources did you get your information from? One account of something she mentioned to only one person at one time? The testimony of doctors who saw clips of Mrs. Schiavo on the news or looked at copies of official documents and came to totally different conclusions? The allegations of partisan strategists on political talk-shows? The rhetoric of politicians trying to warp this to their own political advantage?

    Schiavo's situation really doesn't affect me one way or another, just like most of the thousands of daily killings in the world don't really affect me. However, Mr. Falwell has been responsible for the arousal of very extreme hatred, prejudice and negativity amongst a huge number of people. Perhaps without him to constantly rekindle the fires of hatred, to endlessly reiterate that homosexuals are paramount to the devil, some small portion of all the negativity and prejudices he has fostered so dutifully would fade away.

    And I'll have just as many random people on the internet telling me that there's absolutely no proof she had any such wishes, why should I believe you above anyone else?

    And so what if Jerry Falwell does want to be kept on life support? Just a week or two ago in Texas a woman's 6 month old child was killed against her wishes (the baby couldn't be reached for comment apparently), because the hospital decided that it was best to take him off of the respirator that was keeping him alive because without it his lungs couldn't support him. Almost exactly the same as Mr. Falwell's situation, except if Falwell were to cry for his life he'd do it with sentences.
  7. Mar 29, 2005 #6


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    True--I feel the same way about the threads on abortion and the death penalty.
    Also true, and indeed the important factors.
    I agree again. With all the atrocities that occur around the world on any given day, and yet there were people crying and praying about this one case. While it is sad, I couldn't help but wonder where these people suddenly came from--where are these people when other tragedies occur? Do they follow other important events, like global warming, societal responsibility toward the elderly, energy for future generations, etc.? Why do I suspect they came out from under the "ignorant self-righteous hypocrite" rock for this one cause?
  8. Mar 29, 2005 #7
    People with severe pneumonia sometimes do require what is called pressure support, to lend the energy from a machine, and some abundant O2 to help for a short while. This is pretty standard care. Obviously Falwell has lost his sub contractors license, at least in the short term. I am amazed that I can't hear the angels singing from here, or at least see the heavens parting. But instead, there is just a sick man getting the standard help, but because he is a celebrity his patient confidentiality is out the window. If his tree fell in my forest, I would wear earplugs. Then we could have a real philosophical discussion.
  9. Mar 29, 2005 #8
    Forget global warming and care for the elderly, those are somwhat abstract problems that people can somehow explain away to themselves. Forget all that; there are entire ethnic groups in todays world being brutally murdered, and one damned person gets all the media's attention while there's goddamned GENOCIDE occuring around the world.
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2005
  10. Mar 30, 2005 #9


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    When referring to atrocities, I was including genocide in that thought--and true that it is more immediate and horrific than the other issues mentioned. The point being is I doubt most of these pro-life fundamentalists keep up with world events and issues, including genocide, and are only activists when it comes to their religious agenda--and thus the humor/irony regarding Falwell was appreciated as well.
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