Wednesday, March 23, 2005

What About the Right to Die?

I'm a glutton for punishment. I think it comes from growing up in a dysfunctional family that rewarded me with attention for acting out. Be that as it may, occassionally I find myself subjecting my delicate mind to the ramblings of Christian talk shows. On my way home from work I tuned in to a Terry Shiavo discussion. Now understand, I tell myself that I am simply listening to opposing opinions and solidifying my argument, but the truth of the matter is, I'm a glutton for punishment. I honestly do wonder how a faith that believes the soul remains with the body until the body perishes could actually want Terri's soul to remain in her debilitated state, so I am looking for something which sheds light on my quandery. Over and over I keep hearing the statement, "right to life"; Terri has a right to life. I don't disagree, but Terri also has the right to die, doesn't she? She expressed her wishes to her husband, and the courts have all agreed to uphold that wish. Is life really sacred, and if so, at what point does the health of the soul become less sacred than the viability of the flesh?

Call me a cynic, but I wonder if the "right to life" movement on behalf of Terri would be as strong if she were a man? After all, the right to lifers don't want women to make any decision where their bodies are concerned, so perhaps they aren't really trying to protect her, but rather trying to maintain that women are subject to the whims of a poorly interpreted faith?

They ended the broadcast by quoting a scripture that I believe was, "Let us speak up for those with no voice." To that I say, "Amen." Isn't that what we're trying to do by allowing her wishes to be carried out?