I’m a little angry this week. So forgive me, but I’m even more frightened.
Politicians around the nation, both in state and federal government, are attempting to change more than the laws of morality.
With several examples from around the country, a disturbing trend is displaying itself.
Republicans are attempting to enact state control of the act over life itself. Scared shitless? You should be.
The examples from this past week are numerous. First is the case of Terri Schiavo, a Floridian who has been seriously brain damaged since 1990 after a heart attack, and has been incapable of meaningful brain function for thirteen years and is only kept alive through a feeding tube.
Her doctors say she is incapable of any kind of recovery. Her husband has been seeking to disconnect her for many years, although her parents still hope for recovery.
Every court has supports the opinion, with no legal precedent able to deny her the right to die otherwise.
Then Jeb Bush, governor of Florida, and his state house passed emergency legislation to stop the disconnection. They disobeyed her husband’s wishes, and denied Terri her right to die with dignity.
Republicans for small government? Really?
The right to die is a fundamental right – it is the ultimate decision regarding life that one should be able to make. Although it doesn’t matter to Jeb Bush.
This case would not seem to have much commonality with a death penalty case, but the similarities are clear. In both, the state is given a monopoly on life-and-death decisions. Primary arguments for the right to die, as well as against the death penalty, often point out the most monstrous of technicalities. Nevertheless, their appeals seem to be falling on deaf ears.
Even more troubling than all of this, however, is the Republican attempt to define what life actually is.
We have witnessed this with Congress’s passing of a bill banning late-term abortions, which tries to get through the back door to get what they can’t through the front: the eventual abolition of abortion and contraception as we know it.
Bill supporters contend that God says this is murder (not all religions’ gods mind you). In addition, the courts have consistently denied that what is not alive is alive.
Doctors, scientists and others who reside in the non-supernatural would tend to disagree with this.
Nevertheless, that doesn’t keep our various Republican governments from working tirelessly to redefine the scientific definition of life.
No evidence has been found to identify consciousness in unborn fetuses aside from normal fetal reflexes.
So, we can all say with exact certainty that you cannot kill what is not alive. A fetus does not perform the normal rhythms and actions of what would be considered sentience in any scientific forum. And furthermore, in our society, does an it really have a right?
But wait. That’s very inconsistent of Republicans. They feel free to kill actual people on death row.
And their reasons are, in fact, quite selfish. Now think: what does this definition and control of life hold for politicians? One, there will be more people to serve the military. Two, there will be more hands to buy from the corporations, which give politicians money. Three, there will also be more convalescents on feeding tubes to help the medical industry. Four, the prison-industrial complex will be doing amazing business, what with execution and all. Five, there will be more hands to serve God.
That is, Republican politicians who feel they can redefine and pull all the strings on life as we know it.
And just in time for Halloween, nothing frightens me more than that.