Saturday, March 19, 2005

Michael Schiavo belongs in jail

Terri Schiavo’s parents have been begging to be given legal responsibility for their daughter so that they can care for her, and now are begging for that responsibility so that they can prevent her from being starved to death by virtue of a decision from Terri’s husband Michael.

Terri Schiavo is not on life support, breathes on her own, and is able to maintain proper blood pressure without assistance. She need assistance eating, and is fed through a tube.

There are many ugly accusations about Michael Schiavo’s behavior toward Terri’s treatment since her medical event 15 hears ago, some or perhaps all may be true. For example, Terri was undergoing therapy and making progress. She could walk a little, and talk a little. Then, Michael moved her from the hospital setting where she was receiving therapy to a hospice where people go to die.

Michael has been trying for all he’s worth, and that’s not much, for the last five years to have Terri’s feeding tube removed and starve her to death.

Michael became involved with another woman who now lives with him and who has borne him two children.

So whose husband is Michael Schiavo? The woman he is raising a family with, or his legal wife whom he is trying to starve to death? Michael stopped being Terri’s husband in all but the most strict legal sense years ago, wants her to die, yet will not divorce her, and he will not surrender custody rights to her parents. Why? Clearly, he has no interest in Terri beyond hastening her death.

Michael asserts that Terri told him she didn’t want to be on life support, but her parents dispute that claim. There is no written document to back up his claim. And of no little consequence in this matter, she is not on life support.

Watching videos of Terri show clearly that she is severely affected from the event in 1990. But she is not in a coma, and does respond to stimulus. She has a loving family that wants desperately for her to live and to take care of her.

Terri belongs under the care of her parents, who unlike Michael will get her some help that may improve her life. All Michael wants to do is to keep her from getting help, and to starve her to death. A good case can be made that Michael Schiavo is guilty of criminal neglect, perhaps even worse.

He belongs in jail.


Buffalo said...

I must absolutely disagree with you.
Night after night after night I see the networks parading Terri across American and around the world. You see the family making over her, hear their plaintive pleas. You listen to the parents attorney.
Now that we are in end game they are making claims about how her condition had been improving when she was in the hospital.
Where were the parents then?
How many times have you seen, or listened to Michael? Speaking ONLY for myself, I haven't seen him one time.
The fact is, none of us know what Terri's wishes were. He well may be following her wishes. We just don't know.
We're only seeing the side of the story that makes good copy.

James Shott said...

I don't look at it as a two-sided story so much as a story where the person with the control no longer has any ties to the woman, and probably would like to get this over as soon as possible so that he can live his new life without this inconvenience.

I've seen a timeline that strongly suggests that Michael acted against the best interests of Terri in stopping therapy, moving her from a therapy center to a hospice, ordering a DNR and other things like that. He has nothing to show that Terri actually asked him to withhold life support, but even so, a feeding tube is not considered life support, like a ventilator is.

What pushed me over the line with him is that he obviously has moved on with his life and left her behind, except for this one last effort to put her out of his misery. Why not divorce her? Why not surrender responsibility to the parents who so obviously want her to live, and to care for her? What possible difference can it make to him if she lives? Because she told him she didn't want to? I'll bet she probably also didn't want him to abandon her for another woman either.

I just think Michael is a selfish, soul-less bastard who is bent on causing as much pain as possible for Terri's family.

JL Pagano said...

Is there no possibility that maybe the poor girl in question might be actually glad that her husband was able to find some kind of happiness during the last 15 years?

I know for a fact that if I were reduced to that state I would not want my partner to embark on a vigil by my bedside for over a decade. She is entitled to a life as well.

Have you also taken into account the fact that he has refused millions of dollars offered to make him go away?

I'm not saying the man is a saint by any means, but suggesting he be incarcerated strikes me as being as much a case of "getting rid of a problem" as many suggest he himself is doing by "wanting her to die".

Buffalo said...

Obviously a passionate issue for you. I honestly do not see that what she has is anything that resembles a life. In my reality their is no comprehension of why someone would want to exist like that.
Today we disagree. Tomorrow is another day and another issue.

James Shott said...

I agree that she probably would not want him to be miserable. However, you would expect a husband who loves his wife to do everything possible to help her. He and she have received more than $2 million. Every day it seems, I learn more about how he has done the opposite of what a loving husband would be expected to do. A lot of the money has been spent on lawyers fighting the family, who actually does want to help her.

I think he wrote her off many years ago. He could move on and be happy by simply divorcing her, or even going to court to surrender custody. But he won't do that. It's difficult for me to understand his behavior, past and present, if he truly cares for her. If he wants to move on with his life, why persist in trying to end her life? What's in it for him?

It's a conundrum, all right. I just think he has been -- at best -- negligent in caring for her, and at worst criminally negligent. Had he allowed her to continue the therapy she started, there's a fair chance she would be in much better shape than she now is in. But he chose to end the therapy, and stubbornly refused the family's request to restart it.

James Shott said...

To Buffalo: Yes, I am quite involved in this one. I agree that she doesn't seem to have any quality of life, and I wouldn't want to live that way either. I just think that she would have progressed beyond her present state if good ol' hubby hadn't taken her out of the therapy she was in and moved her to a hospice to die, against the wishes of her parents.

I just think that is wrong.

Wonder what the next issue will be??

Rebecca DeVendra said...

"I just think Michael is a selfish, soul-less bastard who is bent on causing as much pain as possible for Terri's family."

Bravo Mr Shott, I’m usually the one to say things like that!

I also heard that good ol’ Mike (AKA loving husband) melted down Terri’s Wedding and engagement rings to make something for himself- shortly after she was put in the hospital. Pretty fishy.

Anonymous said...

Michael Schiavo denied Terri initial therapy in 1990; paid his own legal fees with her insurance money; moved on with his own life with another woman - (has 2 children);has probably eaten very well in the last fortnight, and is still being a selfish,hypocritical bastard after Terri's unnecessary death. All Terri's parents wanted was to love and look after their daughter - he could have stepped out of the picture, divorced Terri, and let them do this. His selfishness knows no bounds!