Losing Has Consequences

« March 2006 »

Memo to Tim Wilkin: YOU ARE DUMB.

Other than the Dover intelligent design decision, the high water mark for the politics of sanity in recent times had to have been when they cut open Terri Schiavo's skull.

Because after all the uncertainty, all the what-ifs, all the punditry and commentary and rhetoric and bullshit, the autopsy showed that the medical professionals and the scientists were right, and the contents of said skull were only slightly more neurologically active than that Tamagotchi keychain in your junk drawer.

It was concrete evidence that while the lights may have seemed on, nobody was home. No miracle was going to happen. Terri Schiavo would never appear on Oprah thanking the thousands of people who fought to keep her alive. She was a lump in the shape of a girl, and letting it expire was the right thing to do. Period.

And everybody knows it. At least, that's the only conclusion I can draw from the fact that Bill Frist seems to know it. And since Bill Frist was the wrongest person in a stadium's worth of very wrong people during that whole sorry mess last year, if he's figured it out, there's no excuse for you not figuring it out too.

And by "you", I mean Tim Wilkin, state representative from Eagan, MN. Wilkin is the prime force behind a bill known colloquially as the "Schiavo Bill", which would take the decision of whether to provide feeding tubes to patients out of the hands of doctors, families, and guardians, and put it in the hands of people too stupid to realize they lost - the rabid pro-lifers.

So, unless you have a clear directive in a living will, this bill would mean you get fed, whether you have a brain or not. I suddenly begin to see why this issue is so close to Wilkin's heart. ACTUAL QUOTE TIME!

"Having food and water are not radical concepts to sustain life. We're all spoon-fed when we are born into the world and we'll all be spoon-fed when we're taken out of this world."

Yes, let's not listen to doctors and scientists. What do they know? Let's base public policy on the blatantly reductionist and condescending arguments of a prick with demonstrably awful hair. And if that's not enough, let's pull the heartstrings with a touching tale of a kid who beat the odds.

"Later on that day a team of physicians went on to tell my husband Scott and I that Zach would never have any function at all. He'd never lift his head, he'd never recognize us, and he'd never know who we were. Zach is now 16-years-old, attends North Junior High in the Hopkins district and he lives in our home with us in Golden Valley. What if we would have listened to those physicians? What if we would have given Zach up?" - Katy Thuleen, whose son was born prematurely and with cerebral palsy.

Thuleen, willfully or otherwise, seems to be oblivious to the fact that HER FAMILY got to decide whether to "give Zach up" or not. There was no need for a "Schiavo Law" on the books in 1990. The doctors gave the diagnosis, the family decided on treatment. Which is the same thing that happened with Terri Schiavo.

Or at least it WAS, until a bunch of grandstanding busybodies took up a futile and stupid cause that led to their public humiliation and defeat when sanity briefly prevailed and they were proven wrong. But that was over a year ago. Why dwell on the past, when you can dig up its corpse and wave it around as a symbol of your agenda?

Tom Wilkins wants to prevent the kind of "circus" that happened in Florida from happening in Minnesota, glossing over the fact that it was precisely his ilk who brought the tents, the elephants, and the clown makeup in the first place. Morons.