Jeb Bush Continues to Champion Life

The fatal fall-out from Terri Schiavo’s slow execution almost a year ago continues.

Governor Jeb Bush has been working to get legislation passed that would protect Floridians from suffering Terri’s fate. He wants to see a law passed that requires doctors to assume patients want water and food – unless they have put a desire to die into writing before being incapacitated. It doesn’t appear that his proposal will move in this year’s legislative session.

Thus, courts and doctors in that state will continue to be in a position to divine a patient’s intentions around dying in the face of a chronic illness. That is a very dangerous situation – since a utilitarian ethic seems to be dominant among our professional class. No longer do we find a presumption in favor of life; or a fundamental respect for the dignity and mystery of the human being created in God’s image. It is more likely that money or convenience of family members will be determinative when a sick person cannot speak for themselves.

Legislators in Florida seem to be stinging from the after-effect of Terri’s death. Pro-death forces have continued to rework history and public opinion – while pro-Life groups have moved on to other issues, I guess.

It appears that America has not learned essential lessons from Terri’s painful destruction.





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