Who’s right in the Schiavo case?

Ours is an age in which the dictum that everyone is entitled to their own opinion is taken to a fault. Nevertheless, all strong opinions do not have equal validity and there is no inherent obligation to honor both sides of a story equally. Only the brain-dead (with apologies to Terry Schiavo) should do that. Here, Jesse Kornbluth makes the case that it is possible to discern the relative integrity of husband Michael Schiavo’s wishes for his wife Terry and those of Terry’s parents. As Kornbluth’s epigram for today, from Daniel Moynihan, states, “Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not his own facts.” (I hope readers will forgive Moynihan’s dismissal by omission of the opinions of half the world’s population…) If — and I concede this is a big ‘if’ — the facts Kornbluth observes here are correct, it seems incontrovertible that the Schindlers’ motives are far more suspect than Schiavo’s. Either they are exploiting the situation for their own selfish gain, or they are being exploited by the hypocritical agenda of the right-to-lifers, or both. And they are caught in their lies about it. Furthermore, as I wrote here long ago in reflecting on Terry Schiavo’s right to die, the Schindlers’ assertion of the reversibility of their daughter’s condition flies in the face of medical hope, even hope for a miracle. It is not a question so much of whether Michael Schiavo just wants to move on. It is much more one of whether Terry Schiavo will be allowed to move on. (BeliefNet [thanks to walker])

It also bears noting that constitutional scholars feel that Bush’s Congress had no standing to take the action it did this week in bringing the matter to federal court. Although they took pains to insist that this has no bearing on any case but Schiavo’s, don’t forget that Bush’s Supreme Court said the same thing in usurping the people’s right to elect their president in 2000.