Friday, March 25, 2005
“Are all thy conquests, glories, triumphs, spoils,
Shrunk to this little measure?”
Eric Cohen, How Liberalism Failed Terri Schiavo:
" A true adherence to procedural liberalism --respecting a person's clear wishes when they can be discovered, erring on the side of life when they cannot--would have led to a much better outcome in this case. It would have led the court to preserve Terri Schiavo's life and deny Michael Schiavo's request to let her die. But as we have learned, the descent from procedural liberalism's respect for a person's wishes to ideological liberalism's lack of respect for incapacitated persons is relatively swift. Treating autonomy as an absolute makes a person's dignity turn entirely on his or her capacity to act autonomously. It leads to the view that only those with the ability to express their will possess any dignity at all--everyone else is "life unworthy of life."
"This is what ideological liberalism now seems to believe--whether in regard to early human embryos, or late-stage dementia patients, or fetuses with Down syndrome. And in the end, the Schiavo case is just one more act in modern liberalism's betrayal of the vulnerable people it once claimed to speak for. Instead of sympathizing with Terri Schiavo--a disabled woman, abandoned by her husband, seen by many as a burden on society--modern liberalism now sympathizes with Michael Schiavo, a healthy man seeking freedom from the burden of his disabled wife and self-fulfillment in the arms of another…
"In the end, the only alternative is a renewed understanding of both the family and human equality--two things ideological liberalism has now abandoned and modern conservatism now defends…”
“The vile person shall be no more called liberal, nor the churl said to be bountiful. For the vile person will speak villainy, and his heart will work iniquity, to practise hypocrisy, and to utter error against the Lord, to make empty the soul of the hungry; and he will cause the drink of the thirsty to fail.”