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Husband challenges law that keeps his wife alive
UK Telegraph ^ | November 2, 2003 | Ian Ball

Posted on 11/02/2003 2:06:03 PM PST by Pan_Yans Wife

The husband of Terri Schiavo, the brain-damaged woman at the centre of America's longest and most celebrated "right to live" controversy, is challenging a new Florida law that enabled the state governor to step in and halt his wife's court-sanctioned death by starvation.

After a series of medical, legal and emotional battles that have left a family - and public opinion - deeply divided, Michael Schiavo has broken his long silence over his wife's plight. In a television interview, he said his parents-in-law were motivated by money in their fight to keep their daughter alive.

Mrs Schiavo, 39, collapsed at home in 1990, suffering extensive brain damage. Her parents, Bob and Mary Schindler, have argued for years that their daughter shows signs of life and should have a chance of rehabilitation. Yet several Florida courts have agreed with doctors consulted by her husband - Mrs Schiavo's legal guardian - that she is legally brain dead.

On October 15, the feeding tube that had kept Mrs Schiavo alive for 13 years was removed on her husband's wishes, a move sanctioned by a Florida judge. Seven days later, however, "Terri's Law" was passed by the state legislature, granting Governor Jeb Bush, President George W Bush's younger brother, the power to override the court. He ordered Mrs Schiavo's doctors in Tampa to reinsert the tube.

The law also required a legal guardian to be appointed for Mrs Schiavo. Prof Jay Wolfson, an authority on health care financing, will report to Mr Bush in 30 days on the merit of tests to see if she can be rehabilitated and recommend whether the order that is keeping Mrs Schiavo alive be lifted.

The case has divided those who believe it would be merciful to let Mrs Schiavo die, and those who believe in the sanctity of life. But the passing of Terri's Law also threatens to plunge Mr Bush and the Republican-controlled Florida legislature into a constitutional crisis because sections of public opinion oppose a politician's involvment in medical dilemmas.

Mr Schiavo, whose new partner has one child by him and is pregnant again, has always argued that his wife did not wish to be kept alive artificially.

Thanks to a campaign by the Schindlers, the governor received a petition containing 40,000 signatures from around the world in support of Mrs Schiavo's right to live.

In their "Save Terri" campaign, the Schindlers have used clips of Mrs Schiavo taken from a video posted on the internet. In the film, made with a camera smuggled into her room in defiance of a court order, their daughter opens and closes her eyes, and appears to smile as Mrs Schindler kisses her. Her doctors, however, have said that patients in vegetative states do this involuntarily.

Last week, a 44-page document drawn up by Mr Schiavo's lawyers - who are backed by the powerful American Civil Liberties Union - argued that Terri's Law had "trampled on Mrs Schiavo's right to privacy, self-determination and personal dignity".

The laywers have asked a state judge to rule that the law is an "egregious violation" of the separation of the judicial and executive branches of state government, and clearly unconstitutional.

The strained relations between Mr Schiavo and the Schindlers became publicly poisonous after his hour-long television interview last week.

He said the Schindlers wanted a share of a $1.2 million (£700,000) medical malpractice payout he had won on his wife's behalf in 1992.

He alleged that a year after the malpractice suit had been settled, Mr Schindler tackled him at Mrs Schiavo's bedside, asking how much of the payout he would receive. "He always wanted to get money out of this," Mr Schiavo said.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: bush; florida; law; legislature; michael; schiavo; schindler; terri; terrischiavo

1 posted on 11/02/2003 2:06:03 PM PST by Pan_Yans Wife
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
The legal guardianship of Terri should revert to her family. They are the one's who love her and have her best interest at heart. Michael clearly does not, nor do most of the courts. God help this woman. This is just unbelievable!
2 posted on 11/02/2003 2:10:13 PM PST by ladyinred (Talk about a revolution, look at California!!! We dumped Davis!!!)
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
For the facts the leftist media wont give.
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1013268/posts
3 posted on 11/02/2003 3:01:00 PM PST by rmlew (Peaceniks and isolationists are objectively pro-Terrorist)
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
Ironic, isn't it?
4 posted on 11/02/2003 3:01:54 PM PST by At _War_With_Liberals (Screw 'the security' plan in Iraq. It's time to 'go Saddam' on their medieval asses...)
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
How can you be the husband of one woman lying in a hospital bed
when you are shaked up with another who you've had a child with
and she is pregnant with another of your children?

Too bad they dont have "common law" divorce...down there....
seems to me that a judge with ...half a brain ...would have seen
an obvious 'conflict of interest' with a man claiming to 'do what is right'
for one woman when he is committed to married family life with another...
he is committed to the death of one in order to be financially better off
with his next family...
5 posted on 11/02/2003 5:11:02 PM PST by joesnuffy (Moderate Islam Is For Dilettantes)
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
My nephews wife recently died with ALS, and for years the only way she could communicate was with her eyes!

If he were my son-in-law, Michael Schiavo would be deceased.
6 posted on 11/02/2003 5:18:28 PM PST by SwinneySwitch (Freedom isn't Free - Support the Troops & Vets!!)
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To: sweetliberty
yet another ping.
7 posted on 11/02/2003 5:19:43 PM PST by nicmarlo
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
I believe that the Florida law specifies that a person who has a 'conflict of interest' is not to be appointed guardian of another person? Is it not a 'conflict of interest' for Mr Schiavo to be controlling the interests (guardian) of Terri while he is having kids with another woman?
8 posted on 11/02/2003 5:23:20 PM PST by eeriegeno
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
Someone should clue the UK Telegraph that their article was filled with misinformation! I stopped reading after the second untruth.

<><
9 posted on 11/02/2003 5:23:48 PM PST by viaveritasvita ("When Love takes you in, everything changes.")
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To: ladyinred
**The legal guardianship of Terri should revert to her family.**

Agreed!
10 posted on 11/02/2003 5:24:49 PM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
a 44-page document drawn up by Mr Schiavo's lawyers

Let's say it takes about 15 minutes per page to dictate/write, another 5 min. or so to type, another 5 to edit/proof, another once over for the entire document (at least).....that's at least a half hour a page (x 44 pages). Then photocopy time/expense of say another $50.00 Add the lawyer's at least $120/hour fee.......we're looking at about $1,370.00 for one document to try to get Terri to be murdered.

11 posted on 11/02/2003 5:28:46 PM PST by nicmarlo
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
I never call Terri "Mrs. Schiavo." I just call her "Terri" or "Terri Schindler."
12 posted on 11/02/2003 6:04:40 PM PST by Theodore R.
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To: joesnuffy
George W. Greer is a member of a "conservative" Baptist Church in Pinellas Co. I wonder what that church is teaching, or if he even attends the church. Someone posted that Greer's church has been having "prayer" for Terri, but I don't know what that means.
13 posted on 11/02/2003 6:06:22 PM PST by Theodore R.
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
"But the passing of Terri's Law also threatens to plunge Mr Bush and the Republican-controlled Florida legislature into a constitutional crisis because sections of public opinion oppose a politician's involvment in medical dilemmas."

Oh, but it's NOT a Constitutional crisis when the judiciary fails to uphold the Constitutional RIGHT TO LIFE?

"Mr Schiavo, whose new partner has one child by him and is pregnant again, has always argued that his wife did not wish to be kept alive artificially."

Uhhh....no. He didn't "recall" that little detail until his association with George Felos began...8 YEARS LATER!

14 posted on 11/02/2003 6:08:45 PM PST by sweetliberty ("Having the right to do a thing is not at all the same thing as being right in doing it.")
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To: eeriegeno
"I believe that the Florida law specifies that a person who has a 'conflict of interest' is not to be appointed guardian of another person? Is it not a 'conflict of interest' for Mr Schiavo to be controlling the interests (guardian) of Terri while he is having kids with another woman?"

It does, it is (among other things) and it is being completely ignored by the courts.

15 posted on 11/02/2003 6:10:45 PM PST by sweetliberty ("Having the right to do a thing is not at all the same thing as being right in doing it.")
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To: nicmarlo
"we're looking at about $1,370.00 for one document to try to get Terri to be murdered."

Pretty lucrative, this legal "death for hire" business, wouldn't you say?

16 posted on 11/02/2003 6:12:28 PM PST by sweetliberty ("Having the right to do a thing is not at all the same thing as being right in doing it.")
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To: Theodore R.
Bill Clinton was a member of the Baptist church too.

"Just because a mouse gets in a cookie jar, doesn't make him a cookie." (Corrie Ten Boom)

17 posted on 11/02/2003 6:15:06 PM PST by sweetliberty ("Having the right to do a thing is not at all the same thing as being right in doing it.")
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To: sweetliberty
And I think I low-balled my figure there, sweetliberty.
18 posted on 11/02/2003 6:16:19 PM PST by nicmarlo
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To: nicmarlo
Add the lawyer's at least $120/hour fee

According to other posts, Felos' rate is $450/hour.

19 posted on 11/02/2003 6:16:22 PM PST by supercat (Why is it that the more "gun safety" laws are passed, the less safe my guns seem?)
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To: supercat
That's insane!
20 posted on 11/02/2003 6:18:00 PM PST by nicmarlo
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To: sweetliberty
That's right, but remember Hillary is a "Methodist." As is G.W. Bush!
21 posted on 11/02/2003 6:18:35 PM PST by Theodore R.
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To: nicmarlo
That's insane!

Hey, supply and demand. I haven't heard Terri complain about it, have you?

22 posted on 11/02/2003 6:19:48 PM PST by supercat (Why is it that the more "gun safety" laws are passed, the less safe my guns seem?)
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To: supercat
It's her money that the HINO is spending to get her killed.
23 posted on 11/02/2003 6:24:36 PM PST by nicmarlo
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To: Theodore R.
If Greer has married and split with 3 women as has been reported... he might not be in the best of standing with those folks.
24 posted on 11/02/2003 6:25:48 PM PST by The Red Zone
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To: The Red Zone
The church should call George W. Greer to the front and ask why he would starve and dehydrate a person whose original family members want to take her home and care for her there. I bet he would not submit to such a challenge.
25 posted on 11/02/2003 6:27:33 PM PST by Theodore R.
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
Let me get this right....this law is unconstitutional because sections of public opinion oppose it?

I really hope they don't believe this. I know I don't.

26 posted on 11/02/2003 6:32:29 PM PST by tenthirteen
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
Let me get this right....this law is unconstitutional because sections of public opinion oppose it?

I really hope they don't believe this. I know I don't.

27 posted on 11/02/2003 6:32:36 PM PST by tenthirteen
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To: nicmarlo
It's her money that the HINO is spending to get her killed.

Yes, but have you heard her complain? Terri had "deep pockets", and could thus afford the lawyer's full retail rate (until she reached the point of "empty pockets" anyway).

28 posted on 11/02/2003 6:38:51 PM PST by supercat (Why is it that the more "gun safety" laws are passed, the less safe my guns seem?)
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To: supercat
Had she been receiving therapy for the past 10 years, instead of isolation, perhaps we may well have heard her complain.
29 posted on 11/02/2003 6:40:41 PM PST by nicmarlo
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To: nicmarlo
Had she been receiving therapy for the past 10 years, instead of isolation, perhaps we may well have heard her complain.

No doubt. Of course, Felos could just have found some doctor to testify that the squawks she was making were "just reflex" and Judge Greer would have been free to allow Terri's slaughter.

30 posted on 11/02/2003 6:56:06 PM PST by supercat (Why is it that the more "gun safety" laws are passed, the less safe my guns seem?)
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To: Theodore R.
Good point.........I didn't catch that when I read that.

You are right, I speak of her and think of her as "Terri".....

And I'm glad I do.....
31 posted on 11/02/2003 7:11:59 PM PST by Shortstop7
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
Listen to this:

http://www.npr.org/features/feature.php?wfId=1476505

Disability rights activist Rus Cooper-Dowda, who had once been diagnosed as being in a "persistent vegetative state," shares her perspective on the Terri Schiavo case.

Cooper-Dowda was in the hospital listening to the nurses talk about unplugging her, and she tried to letters with her hand, but they would sedate her.

32 posted on 11/02/2003 7:18:27 PM PST by FreedomCalls (It's the "Statue of Liberty," not the "Statue of Security.")
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To: FreedomCalls
The case of Hugh Finn is very simular to Terri's only his wife was successful.
His chid and mother-in-law and parents wanted the feeding tube left in but the courts sided with his wife.

Another sad case.
33 posted on 11/02/2003 7:26:47 PM PST by pickyourpoison
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