Blogging in Berkeley. Notes on news, politics, law, and technology in the US and China. [This blog is inactive. I am now staying busy and having a great time at UVA Law.]
Monday, March 21, 2005
  Terri Schiavo

Fred Barnes wrote a brief article naming the three key facts that warrant a federal review of the Terri Schiavo case:
Facts First

On the applicant message board for a law school I am applying to there are applicants lining up to claim that Congress should not interfere with the workings of the judiciary. Here is my response:

It is hardly surprising that future lawyers don't want the legislative arm of government interfering with the power of the judiciary to do whatever it likes regardless of the will of the people. A lot of Americans wish that the judiciary would stop striking down laws that their democratically elected representatives pass. Thank goodness that our Founding Fathers set up a system of checks and balances that insures that there will be neither judicial tyranny nor a tyranny of the majority.

If Congress was doing something inappropriate/illegal by passing the law, then it will be struck down in court. If it stands then we should respect the fact that our representatives are doing the right thing by representing the will of the people within the boundaries of the law.

All that the law passed by Congress does is give Terri Schiavo a chance in federal court anyway. She did not have a living will, so we do not know for sure what she would have wanted. Is it really so awful to err on the side of caution in a life or death decision? I suspect many who are enthusiastically advocating the killing of Terri Schiavo support death row convicts getting federal appeals before execution. Let's give Terri the same opportunity. Besides, if she is really in a "persistent vegetative state" as the death advocates claim, she will not have known that she had to wait any longer and will not suffer any additional discomfort before they successfully end her life.


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