Recently I was contacted by two different newspapers asking me to comment on the Terri Shiavo case. At first I hesitated, commenting that there was a lot about this story that I was obviously not privy to. As I write this column, Terri is in her twelfth day of being off the feeding tube.
Like many of you, I have listened to the endless coverage, and conflicting stories surrounding this woman that has taken on a bizarre circus-like atmosphere. There is an abundance of finger-pointing, blaming, criticism, and character assassination; not to mention emotions that run the gamut, including “Just let her die with dignity,” to “The Bush brothers could save her if they wanted to.”
I make no bones about being a supporter of President Bush. I like him. And I believe he is honestly doing what he thinks is best. I also believe he will not break the law as it currently stands. Too many people have spouted off that he (and/or his brother, Florida Governor Jeb) could take matters into their own hands. There’s a strong reaction in me that likes that idea. But, allow me to point out a bigger issue that we face.
For decades, we the people have not taken seriously the selection of judges and lawmakers (senators and representatives). We have been more enamored with personality than with principle. We often ignore that part of the election ballot where we have the opportunity to vote for local judges. We rarely know them personally, so we don’t bother to take the time to inquire. “Leave it to someone else! What can it hurt anyway?”
Judges have been appointed to the highest courts in our land by a Congress that isn’t as concerned with selecting those who will interpret the law, as they are those who will make law. Judges, including the Supreme Court, are to interpret law. What has slowly been taking place in our judiciary over the years is a gradual shift from interpretation of law to creating law. Creating law is the role of the Congress. That’s why they are referred to as “law makers.”
We the people must get involved in our government now, or we will continue to be subjected to further abuses of the law, and poor laws proposed and enacted by members of Congress. Terri Shiavo is an example of where we the people have been misrepresented. When those who are incapable of protecting or defending themselves are killed or allowed to die, our nation has a rottenness in its bones. We cannot continue in this manner and expect the blessings of a benevolent God to continue. That would be a mockery. The question I have been asking for several years is, “Why should God bless America?” Ask yourself, “Why should He?”
The “slippery slope” is when a society takes a certain path of poor decisions, which leads to more poor decisions, until we find ourselves in a state of anarchy, and our rights gone. In my study of history, democratic societies eventually fail when they ignore their freedoms. They presume those freedoms will always be there. They allow rulers to encroach on these same freedoms, only to wake up one day to a dictatorship or autocratic form of government. Do not be so naïve as to think it could not happen in the United States of America. It is already happening.
Bottom line – if you choose to get all worked up over the imminent death of Terri Shiavo, who may well be dead by the time you read this; or the slaughter of the innocents through laws of abortion; or the court ruling removing “Under God” from the Pledge of Allegiance; or any number of laws that are heinous, then get involved! Work hard at having people elected to office who will uphold the laws of the land and not undermine our rights as Americans. Speak out on issues. Let your voice be heard. But do not ask our leaders to break the laws we have allowed lawmakers to make. That would lead to anarchy.
We have the power. We are still the people!