March 31st, 2005


You don't want to hear it, but I'm going to write it anyway. Otherwise it'll make me rant even more.

As your friends list has probably already told you fifteen times, Terri Schiavo died this morning.

I've not followed the whole sad saga as closely as many. See, after the election, I pretty much stopped watching the news. I occasionally feel guilty about relying on a quick perusal of to find out what's going on in the world, but then last weekend I remembered when I started that.

My grandmother has my old TV in the nursing home, and she had it on the national news. The lead story involved all these people in Florida with their tearful signs: "Dear Jeb, Please Save Terri!" and I lost it and started stalking up and down the hall ranting and probably scaring the shit out of all these old people just trying to get some rest.

Just a few of the reasons that sent me through the roof:

1). Okay, so these are people from the uber-Religious Right, right? Right. So why the fuck are they acting like Jeb Bush is God on Earth? Geez, if they want to stick the Ten Commandments everywhere, you'd think they'd at least know the one about "Thou shalt have no other gods before me." Idolatry, people. It's not just for [insert your favorite ethnic slur against those of religions other than Christianity] here.

2). Okay, in the time you spent making your stupid "Dear Jeb, Please Save Terri!" sign, you could have gone out and done some good for people who are actually conscious of how hungry and sick they are. But noooooo, those people are dirty and icky and some of them aren't even white!! They must have brought it on themselves! Again, reread your Bible and check the part about feeding the hungry and caring for the sick and visiting those in (*GASP*) prison. It doesn't say anything about "bum-rush a hospital and pour water down the throat of a woman who can't even swallow and will therefore drown."

I lost any sort of respect I might have had for Terri Schiavo's parents when I found out they were taking the list of people who had donated to them and selling it to a conservative fund-raising group. "Thanks for helping us, here, have some junk mail!" From that point on I was convinced it was about money and getting one's own way. And anyway, if they were so truly religious as they say, wouldn't they want their daughter's soul to go on to heaven instead of lingering in a broken body?

I asked Mom if she wanted to go to church for Easter and she said "no, last year there was no place to sit and then someone stole my umbrella." (Nice, folks, stealing at church.) But we did have the TV on a station that broadcasts one of the Nashville church services and I was absolutely astonished when the pastor -- a Southern Baptist -- started preaching about how many people stay away from the church because of the greed and hypocrisy of so-called Christians, and how that hypocrisy is one of the major forces driving people to become atheists. I thought I was hallucinating from too many chocolate eggs. The day before, I had told my mom that I didn't really want to belong to a church right now because I felt they were all Pharisees, that I couldn't figure out what they had to do with anything Jesus taught.

And I am rambling, but this, my friends, is why I don't watch the news: It turns me into a ranty screaming insufferable bitch who wants to talk about politics at Margarita Friday while she's drunk. Be grateful that I watch SportsCenter instead.

Anyway, here's an excellent column that sirinek linked to yesterday. I'm putting the whole thing behind this cut-tag so I can save it, because it's the best comment I've read on this whole mess.

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no, I'm not done ranting yet

From Newsweek's feature, The Legacy of Terri Schiavo:

"But in the Senate, lawmakers felt more comfortable with a bill narrowly tailored to Terri's case—an approach that would help secure Democratic support. Only days before the scheduled withdrawal of her feeding tube on March 18, House and Senate negotiators still hadn't reached a compromise on a bill. [Jeb Bush's former adviser Ken] Connor blew up on a phone call with a senior GOP House member: 'What's the point of having Republicans in control?' he asked. 'The Republican base is going to hold the House leadership accountable.'"

If we're to the point where the only reason to be in politics is to push through your own agenda regardless of what's best for all the people in this nation, then we might as well give up and start over, because the American experiment is over.
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