Re: Not Dead Yet
Anyway, the article by the Harvard grad particuarly resonates with me, as I was also born very early and was on pure oxygen for awhile. It did, in fact, do some brain damage: I was very lucky because all that was damaged were some of the nerves that control the up-and-down motion of my left ankle. I'm told my running stride is a bit odd, but that's the only remaining evidence. In other words, I could have easily ended up in the situation of this Harvard grad, or, in the same vegative state as Terri Shiavo.
My opinion of the Shiavo case is a) it doesn't involve me so why should I care? B) for various reasons, I've more-or-less been forced to come to some opinion. Legally, it seems to me that Michael Shiavo has the right to remove the feeding tube. The "murder" argument that supporters of Terri Shiavo advance has some legitimacy, but in my mind there is a difference between actively terminating a life and removing life-support (I suppose that means, passively terminating life). Morally, as I think I said before, I simply don't know what the right answer is.
Part of me feels a bit guilty that I tend to tend to side with Michael Shiavo (to the extent that I side at all, which is quite weak) than with his parents, because I could, by a not-so-great change of circumstances, be siding with those who would've wanted to remove my own life support.
All of which means that we are, nationally, debating not just life, but "meaningful" life. I have never supported the idea that "damaged" fetuses should be aborted because they won't be able to have a meaningful (or, in other possible terms, "good" life). So I am a bit puzzled why I seem to have less of a moral issue with removing life-support from someone like Terri Shiavo because she has no chance of recovering. Perhaps because it's not a polarized issue like abortion is? As I say, my opinion of this case seems to be evolving, and my thought progress is rather fascinating to the objective side of me.