The recent murder by judiciary of Theresa Schiavo marked an ominous new turn in the movement toward the next great wave of democidal mania. And there can be no doubt that this was murder, for while the mere removal of a feeding tube was arguably nothing more than the cessation of extraordinary measures, no such defense can possibly apply to the Florida government forcibly preventing anyone from providing the late Mrs. Schiavo with food and water, however useless such offerings might have been.

And yet, despite the great alarm of many conservatives and more than a few liberals, the Schiavo murder does not convey any new power to the state or federal governments. It is simply an expansion of an existing power, the power of the United States’ government to legally kill its own citizens. As the definition of humanity is increasingly restricted, we can expect this power to be exercised more often and on a wider basis.

Engaging in arguments over redefining humanity is a fool’s game, for it is engaging the Culture of Death on its chosen battleground. Simply opening the matter for discussion is a victory for these Ahrimaniacs, as it represents the second of the three stages of their modus operandi:

  1. DECLARE: Assert X, a concept which is completely at odds with mainstream thinking.

  2. DEBATE: Insert X into the daily media flow in order to desensitize the mainstream.

  3. DESTROY: Attack opponents of X in the courts, in the legislatures, in the media and, above all, in the court of public opinion.

These modern-day devotees of Kali-Durga seek to engage the nation in an ongoing discussion of matters relating to the quality of life, the economics of health care for the elderly and the responsibility of the individual to the collective. They know that what is horrific in the eyes of the mainstream today may well be accepted as normal, even natural, tomorrow. Slippery slope argumentation is much maligned, but critics of it find it hard to otherwise explain the evolution of everything from smoking bans in bars to homosexual marriages in Massachusetts.

But stopping the Culture of Death before it builds up steam will require that conservatives give up their irrational love for their favored form of government killing: capital punishment. This affection is sadly misplaced, for even the most powerful arguments in favor of the death penalty can be refuted with ease. For example, which has more likely led to the drop in violent crime over the past four decades, 70 annual executions or the fact that 192 million Americans now live in Right To Carry states? And given Dun and Bradstreet’s 1999 estimate that 1,100 Chinese laogai produce annual revenues of $9.36 billion, it is impossible to argue that housing prisoners for life must necessarily be an economic burden for society.

In embracing the death penalty and attempting to defend it on biblical principles, conservatives are again confusing legality with morality, mistaking human legislation for God’s Law. This confusion was highlighted by the angry conservative response to the Schiavo murder, which was, from start to finish, manifestly legal. But the death penalty sanctioned by Mosaic Law had no connection to any government, and from a Christian perspective, Jesus Christ’s only encounter with the death penalty was to interfere with its operation and spare the intended victim.

Against this, pro-death penalty Christians will naturally turn to Romans 13. But this verse is a double-edged sword, for such an interpretation not only requires acceptance of the American death penalty, but also the Communist Chinese government’s forced abortions, the Soviet Union’s mass starvations and the National Socialists’ gas chambers, among many other lethal historical events – all of which were legal actions of the legitimate authorities. It would also require the repudiation of America’s own Founding Fathers, who were unquestionably in rebellion against the well-established authority of King George III.

The inescapable truth is that people have far more to fear from their own government than they do from violent criminals living in their midst. In the 20th century, national governments killed an estimated 185 million people – far more than the 8.4 million murders estimated to have been committed by criminals. These murderous governments represent more than 30 percent of the current United Nations’ member states, and in addition to the usual suspects include Mexico, Poland, Spain and even the modern, democratically elected French Fifth Republic.

The great lesson of government is that its power, once possessed, will eventually be used. One cannot give a government the ability to kill the worst of its citizens without also giving it the power to kill the rest. The tombstone of Theresa Schiavo bears mute witness to that deadly fact.

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