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Open letter to Gov. Bush on Terri Schindler-Schiavo

Posted By Tom Ambrose On 10/20/2003 @ 1:00 am In Commentary | Comments Disabled

Dear Gov. Bush,

You have before you the most important decision of your political career: Will you or will you not uphold your oath of office to protect the constitutional rights of Terri Schindler-Schiavo?

Additionally, many of our readers have asked questions which, frankly – as reasonable as they are – I don’t know how to answer them. Perhaps you do. For example:

  1. Why is it that a governor can commute the death sentence of a person convicted of murder, but cannot stop the execution of an innocent young woman?

  2. By the definitions of “cruel and unusual,” our courts would not allow a convicted murderer to die of legally sanctioned starvation and dehydration. Why are you allowing this to be done to an innocent young woman?

  3. If any person in America tried to euthanize their dog the way you are allowing to be done to Terri Schindler-Schiavo, they would be prosecuted for cruelty to an animal. Why are you allowing this to be done to an innocent human being?

Gov. Bush, I must also tell you that your pitiful attempt to make people think you are impotent to act in this matter is not credible. It makes people think you are acting in bad faith – washing your hands of a difficult matter just as Pontius Pilate did with Jesus 2,000 years ago. If such is the case – and I believe it is likely – you sir are a coward without modern-day peer. I hope I’m wrong. But, if you let this woman die, her blood is on your hands.

Oh, and yes, Gov. Bush, I am aware there may be a special session of the state legislature that might include a bill to address this matter. But the simple fact is you already have grounds to take charge now. By the time this “special session” gets done, Terri may very well be dead. But then you’ll be able to shrug your shoulders and give yourself and the legislature enough cover to pretend you really tried to help Terri, right?

Surely, governor, there are ample reasons to warrant investigations into the activities of the people involved in seeking Terri’s death. And surely there is ample evidence that Terri is no more a vegetable than you are, governor – she laughs, she cries, she moves in response to words and other stimuli. She is awake. She is alive. And she is a citizen of your state who is entitled to the full protection of the law.

Terri Schindler-Schiavo is being denied her right to life. She needs help to be rehabilitated. She does not deserve a painful execution that we wouldn’t even subject dogs or criminals to.

So, governor, will you act honorably and uphold the integrity of your oath of office or will you allow an innocent, helpless woman to be murdered by legally mandated neglect?

The world is watching.


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