What we are doing to the front end of human development we are also doing on the other end. Those that are not deemed to be living a fully human life are also not deemed to be human and not worthy of life. If it is perceived as that you are no longer conscience of your surroundings then it would just be better to put you down. Whatever happened to where there is life there is hope? Does this only apply to people in the cases of miraculous embryonic stem-cell cures?...Read the whole thing.
We not only as Senator Moynihan said have "defined deviancy down", but we have defined what consists of being human down. In a society that largely has no problem sacrificing human embryos for alleged cures we should not be surprised that the other end of the life spectrum can be sacrificed for not matching the current definition of being fully human.
As I type this, I hear a man calling in on Kevin McCullough's radio show. He is crying. He is saying, through his sobs, that people seem to think that in order to deserve to live, a quadriplegic has to be a Stephen Hawking, a Superman. Yet, he says, Terri Schiavo, just by being able to move a little—just by smiling—made so many people happy.
People are saying that Terri's life had value because it taught people to make living wills. That's wrong. She made an incalculable contribution to the world through her living, not her dying.
I've seen ill and head-injured people. They're not all happy, even when they're doped up on medication. Terri had a spark. She could receive love, and she could give it. You can see that in the way she smiles at her mother in the videos.
A close relative was telling me the other night that I should make a living will so that I would not be kept alive if I were incapacitated. Witnessing Terri's courage, I know that even if I were attached to a feeding tube and unable to move, as long as there were one person on earth who would come to visit me and show me love, I would be happy.
That is what Terri's life taught me—that a single joys in this life, even mixed with pain, is better than hastening death.
We don't know what awaits us in the next life. If we are bound for Heaven, then greater joys will come. But regardless of what happens, we can be sure that, even in Heaven, we will never again have the opportunity to experience the joys particular to this life—the ones that God enables us to give and receive each day, here and now.