This is nothing less than a power grab by the neocons in Congress. Last night, the SCOTUS rejected an appeal from Congress to overrule the Florida courts. The fact that Congress is still trying to overrule the courts shows that they want nothing less than to erase the separation of powers.
If Congress is successful here, we can all kiss our civil rights goodbye.
EDITED to correct spelling in the title. Just noticed the error.
This message has been edited by berberry, 03-20-2005 12:45 AM
Exactly, jar. This is unprecedented on so many levels. In addition to what I mentioned earlier, the original appeal to SCOTUS last night was a bill-of-attainder, no? It applied to one specific person. Perhaps someone who knows more about the law can correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't this just the type of bill that is precluded by the constitution?
Any further legislation would also violate the bill-of-attainder provision, wouldn't it?
There is no end to the hypocrisy of the republicans (and, to be fair, many democrats) on this issue. Until now, haven't they been all about "protecting" marriage? Now, they are forced to use the "logic" that Terri left no written living will, even though every court and every judge who has heard this case has been satisfied that Terri did make her wishes known to her husband and friends. If we assume that her wishes are not known, then according to the marital contract between her and her husband it must be left to her husband (either as next-of-kin or legal guardian - which is it, I'm not sure) to make decisions for her.
Okay then, where is the "protection" of marriage? The bigoted morons in Congress seem to have found this particular marital contract to be most inconvenient and thus they wish to overrule it. Giving Terri's parents legal guardianship of her will nullify her legal marriage to her husband, won't it?
This morning I heard on the radio that the US Congress opened their session with a prayer. It seems your theocracy is a fact.
If you are lucky, the soon to be elected Afghan parliament will make it their first official decision to send troops to the Gulf (of Mexico, this time) in order to magnanimously liberate you from your own version of the Taleban.
In the meantime, the international community wishes you strength.
This message has been edited by Parasomnium, 21-Mar-2005 09:38 AM
We are all atheists about most of the gods that humanity has ever believed in. Some of us just go one god further. - Richard Dawkins
If we assume that her wishes are not known, then according to the marital contract between her and her husband it must be left to her husband (either as next-of-kin or legal guardian - which is it, I'm not sure) to make decisions for her.
I haven't been following this subject much at all, but I caught an interview on Late Edition last night which made me scratching my head. Maybe you can fill in the details, especially regarding this last bit about spousal rights. Please read the whole thing before answering.
While undoubtedly many Reps are using this as a tool to make some sort of statement regarding "life" and "values", one of the writers of the legislation did not seem to me to be overtly trying to anything of the sort. While a bit hyperbolic in his analogies regarding criminals (they get review but Schiavo can't), he dismissed the political and to a great extent the religious aspect of this legislation.
What the guy laid out was that the legislation acts to give federal review of cases involving termination of life support, when there are no specific laws governing aspects of the case (or the minutiae of the case), and there is a dispute between family (or significant others) regarding whether to take the person off medical support. The review board will simply make sure the facts have been substantiated and the processes properly followed.
That to me, no matter what drama the anti-abortion or proXian people want to throw over it, does not seem offensive. It adds a layer of legal oversight on cases where a dispute exists.
The congressman said that there were some serious questions about the medical facts, as well as about spousal rights (whether they actually hold in this case). Since I do not know the full story, what he went on to say certainly did raise some questions in my mind.
As far as medical facts go, she does not appear to fit the traditional vegetative state criteria. Not that I would want to live like she does, and maybe she does not, but it does seem a bit odd to say that she is in a complete vegetative state. The congressman went on to show that he was not simply a bible-toting "life thug" by admitting freely that as a physician he himself had pulled feeding tubes based on the requests of families and understood that was a valid choice for those within vegetative states. He questioned whether she was actually in that state based on his experience as a physician.
As far as spousal rights, both he and Terri's brother stated that the husband has since moved on to another woman and has essentially lived with her in what would be a "common law" marriage situation for a number of years. Thus there seems to be a valid question of whether the rights he had would at this point have been forfeited and revert back to her family, just as a matter of normal legal procedure.
I'm not trying to defend fanatical Reps (and some Dems) on this, just saying that interview made it sound not so insane as it did through the filter of proLife hysteria surrounding it as well as the antiRep demagogues.
holmes "...what a fool believes he sees, no wise man has the power to reason away.."(D. Bros)
Is there anyone from the proLife-fundie side that sees a major inconsistency that Bush would rush from his ranch to save one life because there is a question regarding her status, when he never budged to prevent the deaths of over 10K innocent Iraqis as well as our own soldiers when there were questions regarding Iraq's status?holmes "...what a fool believes he sees, no wise man has the power to reason away.."(D. Bros)