What’s the definition of “is”? Whatever you want it to be. It’s called expediency.

What’s your definition of “murder”? Whatever the government or a judge wants it to be. That’s expediency too.

Judging by what’s going on, the state of Florida is suffering from a severe case of expediency fever. It would be funny if it weren’t so serious.

It’s about human life. You can be detached or you can be realistic. I choose to be realistic.

This is about life and death – the life and death of real people.

It’s about the power of the state to decide who will live and who will die. But it’s more, because it’s about the state – read that, a judge – having the power to decide how and when a person will die, based on the judge’s opinion as to whether that particular life has value.

In Florida, as I write this, there are two lives in balance. Two human lives, in the same county, whose continuance depends on the power of the law and the state.

Poor schizophrenic Florida.

On the one hand, the St. Petersburg City Council (Pinellas County) got agitated because a rock band plans an on-stage suicide as part of its act. An emergency ordinance was frantically and unanimously passed making it illegal to conduct a suicide as part of a show or commercial venture and indeed to be part of such a “performance” by hosting, promoting or selling tickets.

The leader of the group “Hell On Earth” doesn’t care. Billy Tourtelot says the show will go on because he wants assisted suicide legalized in Florida.

By the time you read this we’ll know what happened because it’s scheduled for the weekend of Oct. 4. As I write, it’s a standoff.

There’s another life-and-death standoff in Pinellas County. In this case, this law is ordering the killing of 38-year-old Terri Schindler Schiavo. She’s severely brain damaged as a result of a mysterious collapse one evening, 13 years ago. But, she’s alive, awake, responsive – not in a coma, not vegetative, not dying. She needs a tube for nutrition and fluids but is not on any machine or life support.

There was a medical malpractice suit after the initial emergency. The jury awarded $1.3 million with nearly $800,000 to be used for Terri’s rehabilitation and care.

Her husband, who testified then he would work to protect her life, has spent virtually all her money to get the courts to pull the feeding tube.

It seems Michael Schiavo wants his wife dead. In court, a nurse testified he frequently asked, “Is that b—- dead yet?” Terri got no physical therapy, despite expert medical testimony that she could learn to swallow and therefore eat and drink normally. Terri never even got routine teeth cleaning all those years.

While Terri languished, Michael went on with his life with a live-in girlfriend, had a baby with her and now awaits the birth of their second child. He’s still legally married to Terri and will not divorce.

The legal battle continues because Terri’s parents want their daughter to live. They want to care for her as long as her life permits. They have spent all their savings, retirement and whatever else they had and are deeply in debt to save their daughter’s life. They want her to have food and water.

But Florida won’t budge. The husband is Terri’s “guardian” (what’s the definition of guardian?) and has primary rights.

Michael says Terri once mentioned she never wanted to live hooked up to machines. It appears that hearsay convinced the courts. The implication is a handicapped life isn’t worth living, so end it.

Why not just divorce her and go on with his life? Why not let Terri’s parents take the responsibility of caring for their daughter? Indeed, why not let Terri live and die on her own? Michael Schiavo won’t say.

He wants her starved, dehydrated and dead.

Apparently Florida agrees. After years of litigation, the date is set for Oct. 15 at 2 p.m. Terri is scheduled to begin starving and dehydrating to death with the blessing of the state of Florida, the courts of Florida, the laws of Florida and, in fact, the people of Florida.

They can all feel smug there’s no legalized suicide in Florida. But, like it or not, there is legalized murder. Terri Schindler Schiavo will be the first victim.

God rest her soul, and heaven help the judge, the lawyers, the governor, the legislature, her “husband” and all those who either supported her killing or did nothing to prevent it. They are all guilty of murder.

But then, what’s the definition of murder?

I feel sick.

To learn more about this situation, go to Terri’ s Fight, the family website, or Pray For Terri.

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