RE: Terri Schiavo - two articles from the Cuban media
- This is a letter I sent to the Marxism list where an exhaustive
discussion of the Schiavo case has taken place.
My Spanish is not good but I read the two articles from the Cuban press
submitted by Walter Lippmann. They paralleled the thinking of most of
the list members who participated in the discussion, as far as I can
(1) This was basically a family matter. One article even described it
as "strictly a family matter," I think.
(2) Michael Schiavo's actions were entirely reasonable and decent under
the circumstances. Note is taken of the evidence that Terri Schiavo
would not have wanted to live in this state -- actually a pretty
reasonable assumption even without evidence.
(Although I never agreed with the criticisms and smears of Mr. Schiavo,
I was won through the discussion to the conclusion that the course of
action he followed was a and almost certainly the proper one under the
circumstances and that he was being persecuted by Governor and President
Bush, DeLay, et al. I disagree with any suggestion that his motives were
monetary, although all these decisions in the United States cannot avoid
being shaped in part by economic conditions that press on everyone.
But there is no evidence whatever that he was motivated by desire for
the inheritance or anything of that kind. Anymore than there is evidence
that the parents were ever willing to allow Terri to die completely, and
had to be pressed into taking a different stand by the Whore of Babylon.
(However, I shudder as People magazine and the talk shows close in on
the various parties. This ain't over yet.)
In the US media, Michael Schiavo is being treated as a veritable
Klaus von Bulow (leaving aside that von Bulow was actually framed, and
that Sonny von Bulow is still comatose or whatever, perhaps to avoid a
bloody gang war among her survivors).
(3) While the Cuban articles seems to differentiate from the parents'
position, they never denounce them for "papism" or being tools of
"papists." This would be a stupid mistake in Cuba, and it isn't very
bright here either.
(4) The Cubans are ruthless appropriately with the various Bushes'
claims to represent "life." The Bushes, of course, think it is morally
proper to kill just about anybody they think is in the way. Everybody
else, however, should "err on the side of life." But I don't think there
is anything in the articles that labels the broader opposition to ending
Schiavo's life as simply "right-wing," although leftists here are prone
to see it that way.
(5) The Cubans criticize the intervention of the White House and
Congress as demagogic and improper.
(6) There is nothing in the article that treats this as anything other
than an individual case, talks about the "right to die" or broadly
generalizes from this case in any other way about how cases of "terminal
illness" and so on should be handled.
I am sure others got more from the articles than I did, and he or
others may be able to correct misunderstandings. Fred Feldman