More letters on the Terri Schiavo case

31 March 2005

Below, we continue to post letters received on WSWS articles concerning the Terri Schiavo case, including: “Right-wing propaganda and scientific fact in the case of Terri Schiavo”, “‘Culture of life’ or culture of lies: an exchange with WSWS readers on the Terri Schiavo case”, “The Schiavo case: Bush and Congress trample on science and the Constitution”, “Democrats complicit with Christian right, Republicans in Schiavo case” and “Bush, Congress intervene in Terri Schiavo case: political thuggery in the service of reaction”.

Patrick Martin:

I am once again proud of the integrity and evenhandedness displayed by the WSWS, this time in relation to a situation that should never have escalated into such a circus (the fact that it has says a lot about the corporate media and other oligarchies which are able to finance and rally the most backward elements in society into confused, irrational violence).

In your response to “CR” (mother of the nine-year-old; self-proclaimed “socialist”) you are very careful not to pander to emotion and hysteria, and to appeal to reason. It is this presence of mind which sets apart the WSWS from other media sources, even those on the left. I look forward to a day when many of the same misguided folk who now campaign to “save Terri” will have acquired enough knowledge of the system to help save humanity from its true enemy. They will redirect that irrational rage into a truly worthwhile cause ... now, I guess that’s something worth praying for! “Culture of life,” indeed.

Keep up the appeal to reason.

NP

Sydney, Australia

[29 March 2005]

Reading your article about the Christian nut jobs threatening Michael Schiavo, and others’ lives, one can anticipate the political “lesson” that this sordid episode will give the right wing in this country: That the judiciary has too much power—that matters of life and death rightly belong in the hands of the executive branch, in states and in the national government. It is instructive to note that Randall Terry referenced and praised George Bush’s ignoring the deliberative judgment of the UN when he went to war in Iraq.

LG

Sioux Falls, South Dakota

[29 March 2005]

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In response to the article, “Democrats complicit with Christian right, Republicans in Schiavo case,” I really don’t blame the Democrats for not getting involved. Being a Democrat from a “blue state” in the United States, and an avid reader of this site, I truly see this as a blessing in disguise. What I mean by that is that Bush’s poll numbers are dropping, Americans are becoming distraught over government intervention from people who claim to be for “personal liberties” and “small government.”

I do not know if any of my fellow Democrats in Washington agree with me, but I say let them (Republicans) keep doing what they are doing. It is only going to benefit the left in the future. Social Security is another issue; that is a gift to liberals from the president. Many Democrats are trying to milk the “pro-lifers” and “Christian Right” (they are not Christian and they are not right about anything) for all they are worth, overall that is sad, but hey, 2006 is right around the corner, and people here in Pennsylvania need Santorum to mess up somewhere; don’t forget it is American politics as well.

SB

[29 March 2005]

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I know you must be getting tired of reading such voluminous amounts of mail over a controversy as ridiculous as the Schiavo affair—a controversy that could only be manufactured in America—but I’d like to add two more small points to think about.

One thing that’s interesting to me is that the very people who are so frothy at the mouth over preserving Terri Schiavo’s empty husk of a body are the right-wing defenders of big-game hunters and their right to shoot and kill animals. I wish I could meet one of these pundits on TV and ask them why they think it’s morally acceptable to kill an animal for pleasure, but not humans. The answer would be something to do with the nobility of the human mind; people can think, reason, and imagine. Animals can’t, so killing them is okay. If a conservative would explain this aloud, it would by logical progression lead to the dismantling of the argument to keep Terri Schiavo alive in her permanently vegetative state.

Another thing I’d like to mention is a statistic I just read in a book, 10 Reasons to Abolish the IMF and World Bank: every month, a million children die from hunger and hunger-related diseases in the Third World. A million every month. The global market took the feeding tube out of the Third World a long time ago. The master countries have yet to put it back in.

I can’t remember the last time I saw our politicians act so fast as when they rushed that bill through Congress to let the Schiavos go to the federal court. Bush even interrupted his Crawford vacation for it, which is astonishing. The last time our politicians acted so quickly on legislation was the Patriot Act, I believe.

Think about how many people have died in the underdeveloped world from hunger during the two weeks of this American controversy.

You guys are my favorite web site,

PM

[30 March 2005]

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At the start of the Schiavo matter, I, living in the so-called “US Bible Belt,” dismissed it as another case of the religious loons gone wild. I never dreamed that it would escalate to the point where our fascist politicians would use it to whip up hysteria to this extent, so obviously go against the intent of the Constitution, set the legislative and executive branches of government against the judicial branch, and even almost provoke a physical confrontation between Florida state police and local county police.

The latter, I think, was an attempt by Gov. Jeb Bush to make his bones with the “Crazy Christians,” since he doesn’t have a cuckoo religious reputation.

Noam Chomsky tried to find comparisons for such religious fervor, as exists throughout US society, with other societies. What he found was that one good comparison was with pre-industrial societies. It appears the US, with its fiscal and trade deficits, is returning to a pre-industrial society, both economically and socially.

It would be wrong to think the top layers of the elite, or at least the majority of them, believe this stuff. They go along with it as a way to appease a base they really don’t have. It allows them to stay in power and impose policies that are extremely detrimental to this group of idiots they are pandering to. However, it does expose the lengths they will go to keep the population’s attention off of their other policies.

If the nuts ever realize their true economic concerns, it will be interesting to see what happens. In the meantime, it is the duty of we of the left to continue pointing out these inconsistencies.

The polls indicate that the majority of the US population is not as religiously insane as the hysteria would indicate and strongly disagree with the actions of the “crazies.” Maybe this will provide some sort of enlightenment to them as to the character of these politicians they have elected.

TR

Garland, Texas

[30 March 2005]

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I would like to thank WSWS for your continued rational exploration of the Terri Schiavo case. I am disturbed by the people who wrote in defense of CR. I did not see that WSWS had been cruel or unkind to her in its response. Indeed WSWS has been dealing with this case in a rational, intelligent way. That CR is a distraught mother (if indeed she is who she says she is) does not change the facts in the case. CR chose to ignore the facts and assumed that WSWS wanted handicapped children dead. If she had read what was written she would have had all of her concerns answered. Public policy decisions should be made on the bases of facts and rational thought. If we make public policy (as the Congress did) based on who is the most pathetic and cries the loudest, then we might as well tear down our democracy. Are we ready to destroy what legal safeguards we have left over a woman who died 15 years ago?

Thank you again.

AJ

Columbia, Missouri

[30 March 2005]

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Wonderful examination and exchange on the Terri Schiavo case in the article, “Right-wing propaganda and scientific fact in the case of Terri Schiavo.” I commend David North’s concise and factually based rebuttal to reader Ms. CR’s personal and poorly researched letter(s) of intent.

Mostly, I am horribly disturbed that the views expressed by Ms. CR are supposedly that of a socialist ideology. I see many contradictions within the framework of her letter to WSWS that would indicate the possible misunderstanding, misrepresentation, and pretentious nature of her role as a socialist.

I could analyze in the most microscopic manner, phrase for phrase, all that is ill-crafted within Ms. CR’s letters (and all that is in stark opposition to the Marxist/Leninist/socialist tradition). However, only one example is needed to do so: Siding with the extreme Christian neo-conservative propaganda machine.

By doing this, CR has portrayed herself as being in support of an unmoral, unrealistic, and deceptive media and political system that has made a charade out of the Terri Schiavo case (along with many other things). To me, this is an unacceptable and hasty position if one wants to be considered a true socialist.

Again, I applaud David’s realignment of the facts.

MH

[30 March 2005]