Fighting For Dear Life Non-Fiction Review : 2006/11/03
Fighting For Dear Life: The Untold Story of Terri Schiavo and What It Means for All of Us
by David Gibbs and Bob DeMoss
Minneapolis: Bethany House, 2006, 288 pp., $19.99 hardcover.
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David Gibbs and Bob DeMoss
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filled me with disgust--disgust for the evil men who cruelly murdered Terri Schiavo by treating her worse than any criminal on death row, by starving and dehydrating her until she finally couldn't fight any longer. No guilty murderer or terrorist has had to endure the conditions Terri was forced to live under, and finally, to die under.
David Gibbs was the family lawyer for the Schindlers, Terri's parents. His inside story explains how the sorry saga of justice miscarried transpired in Terri's case. It's still hard to believe that this could happen in America--an unfaithful husband in a long-term relationship with his mistress (whom he married after Terri was finally murdered) is aided in his goal of killing his brain-damaged wife by a law team and judges who care nothing for Terri's condition other than their fury that she remained alive.
I think the person who repulsed me the most was Judge Greer, who refused to ever visit Terri. Perhaps he knew sleep would be hard to come by at night if he saw with his own eyes that he was going to be party to killing a healthy woman who had a relationship with her family. Yes, Terri was brain-damaged, but she wasn't on life support. She could sit in her chair cuddling her favorite toy, light up when her mom entered the room, and even try to talk at times. Somehow the judge bought into Michael Schiavo's lie that Terri was in a PVS (persistive vegetative state) and non-functional, and therefore deserving of a torturous death.
Consistent with the Orwellian Newspeak that characterized the entire case and much of the media coverage, Michael Schiavo and his lawyer George Felos both made statements about how peaceful Terri's death had been, and how wonderful it was finally to have succeeded in bumping her off (although their terminology differed). Although my faith requires me to forgive, there are moments when I think of how appropriate it would be for them to enjoy the same peaceful death they gave her. Those pictures of inmates near death from starvation in Nazi death camps look almost pastoral in their peacefulness, don't they?
Fighting For Dear Life
concludes with discussions of people who came out of comas and supposed PVS, and offers useful tips about preparing yourself and your loved ones for situations like the Schindlers and Terri ended up experiencing. The only flaw of the book is that the writing could have used more editing. I disliked some of the substandard writing, like "You might want to read that statement again (105)," or "the tension in the room at that moment could only have been cut by a surgeon's knife (54)." Those minor flaws aside, this book should be read by anyone concerned with the sanctity of human life and the downward spiral of the American medical and judicial systems.