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News of the Day ... in Perspective


U.S. Supreme Court declines to hear case on “Terri’s Law”; way cleared for death by dehydration/starvation

As the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear the appeal of Gov. Jeb Bush regarding the case of Terri Schindler Schiavo, the Florida Supreme Court decision, which struck down the law that previously saved her from death by dehydration, will stand.

Gov. Bush argued that Mrs. Schiavo had been denied her right to equal protection of the law.

Terri’s estranged husband and legal guardian has been striving to have her feeding tube removed, while refusing to permit a swallowing test to determine whether she could be spoon fed. Terri’s Law was passed by the state legislature six days after the gastrostomy tube had been removed by court order in 2003.

Schiavo claims that his wife would not want to be “kept alive artificially.” Her parents insist that she is alert, responsive, and communicative, and manifests a strong will to live despite her severe disability.

Probate Judge George Greer has ruled that Terri is in a “persistent vegetative state,” one of the conditions in which Florida law allows a feeding tube to be removed from a person who is not terminally ill and has not left a written directive. Her parents and some physicians dispute that diagnosis.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) said that the Court has sent an important message to the governor and the legislature not to attempt to thwart judicial decisions because of public pressure. (“Schiavo’s parents ask husband to divorce her: www.foxnews.com/story/0%2C2933%2C145332%2C00.html)

“It’s judicial homicide,” said Robert Schindler, Terri’s father. “They want to murder her.”

For video footage of Terri Schindler Schiavo, see www.azstarnet.com/video. AP story: www.dailystar.com/dailystar/news/58398.php

Additional information:

“Florida Supreme Court Strikes Down Terri’s Law,” News of the Day Archive, Sept. 25, 2004.

News of the Day Archive