MartiniPundit

Random thoughts and insights – always shaken, never stirred

Mark Steyn on Terri Schiavo

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Another good point:

As for the worthlessness of Terri Schiavo’s existence, some years back I was discussing the death of a distinguished songwriter with one of his old colleagues. My then girlfriend, in her mid-20s, was getting twitchy to head for dinner and said airily, ”Oh, well, he had a good life. He was 87.” ”That’s easy for you to say,” said his old pal. ”I’m 86.” To say nobody would want to live in an iron lung or a wheelchair or a neck brace or with third-degree burns over 80 percent of your body is likewise easy for you to say.

We all have friends who are passionate about some activity — They say, ”I live to ski,” or dance, or play the cello. Then something happens and they can’t. The ones I’ve known fall into two broad camps: There are those who give up and consider what’s left of their lives a waste of time; and there are those who say they’ve learned to appreciate simple pleasures, like the morning sun through the spring blossom dappling their room each morning. Most of us roll our eyes and think, ”What a loser, mooning on about the blossom. He used to be a Hollywood vice president, for Pete’s sake.”

But that’s easy for us to say. We can’t know which camp we’d fall into until it happens to us. And it behooves us to maintain a certain modesty about presuming to speak for others — even those we know well. Example: ”Driving down there, I remember distinctly thinking that Chris would rather not live than be in this condition.” That’s Barbara Johnson recalling the 1995 accident of her son Christopher Reeve. Her instinct was to pull the plug; his was to live.

Not that this will matter for Terri much longer.

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Written by martinipundit

March 28, 2005 at 11:34 am

Posted in General

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