News of the Day ... in Perspective3/31/2005
German Medical Association issues statement on Terri Schiavo
The Frankfurter Allgemeine carried a series of articles with photographs of now-deceased Terri Schiavo, her grieving family, and protesters carrying crucifixes, remarking that “millions” worldwide were observing her death.
A sampling of the articles: “What must I do to avoid ending up like Terri?”; “Does her husband just want to be rid of her?”; “Her slow death: does she really feel nothing?”; “Death sentence for waking-coma patient Terri”; “Jesse Jackson says Schivo’s death wrong”; “The public suffering of Terri Schiavo.”
Dr. Jörg-Dietrich Hoppe, President of the German medical association issued a statement that concluded: “In the case of patient Schiavo, her probable wishes could not be determined beyond question. Therefore, in such doubtful cases, the maintenance of life is an absolute priority. We must not permit the presumption that patients would renounce life just because of their state of “waking coma.” Respect for life and for the worth of every person forbids it” (trans. by Jane Orient).