Thursday, August 17, 2006

Enter Michael Schiavo

In the Terry Schiavo case, the GOP was very quick to insinuate itself into the very private matter of whether a person could be allowed to die with dignity, or have their life unnecessarily prolonged with virtually no quality to that life.

Who can forget the diagnosis made by Sen. Bill Frist who determined that she was "not in a persistent vegetative" state on the basis of watching a highly-edited home video?

According to a Washington Post account at the time:
"I question it based on a review of the video footage which I spent an hour or so looking at last night in my office," he said in a lengthy speech in which he quoted medical texts and standards. "She certainly seems to respond to visual stimuli."

Of course, other members of the GOP were falling all over themselves to exploit the issue, until they looked at their internal polling and realized that they were committing political suicide. It's hard to say which of the Bush brothers looked stupider, Jeb, or meddler-in-chief George, who cut short a vacation to sign emergency legislation on Schiavo that would press federal courts to intervene.

It was a private battle between Terry Schiavo's parents and Terry's husband Michael, who was demonized in a manner the GOP usually reserves for Democratic politicians who have served in our nation's military.

Unfortunately for the GOP, they found out that the public was overwhelmingly behind letting Terry Schiavo die with dignity. It helped that they lost every single court battle on this. Considering how the Republicans have been stacking the judiciary, that's saying something.

So now, Michael Schiavo is back. Amy Goodnaugh has an excellent piece in the New York Times on Mr. Schiavo's commitment to return the favor by fighting against those who tried so desperately to intrude on his life and force Terry Schiavo to exist with no quality of life, complete with a feeding tube eternally lodged down her throat.

Schiavo appeared on behalf of Ned Lamont in his successful race against Joe Lieberman and he plans many more campaign stops on behalf of efforts to defeat others who played politics with the life of his brain-dead wife.

If this man only swings a couple of seats over to the Democrats he will have accomplished an awful lot. We should all wish him well. The Times story refers to a PAC he has set up. Contributing to it would be money well spent.

As they say, revenge is a dish best served cold. I see some Republicans getting a veritable blizzard heaped upon their dinner plates.

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