Many Americans oppose abortion because they reject injustice – particularly when it targets vulnerable, fellow human beings.
You and I would be hard-pressed to find anyone more vulnerable than an innocent preborn child.
However, there is another segment of society whose right to life is
being increasingly jeopardized, and there are ways we can – and should –
help protect them.
It seems with each passing week another patient who has suffered a
serious brain injury is being threatened with or denied the basics of
food and water – the result of a healthcare professional deeming his or
her life hopeless.
This is a much more serious problem than most people realize.
If you read only one article
on this topic, let it be Basic Care, Human Dignity, and Care for
Medically Vulnerable Persons, by Bobby Schindler. Bobby is the president
of the Terri Schiavo Life & Hope Network.
Bobby recently became an associate scholar with the Charlotte Lozier
Institute (CLI), the research arm of Susan B. Anthony List. In his first
article for CLI, he articulately summarizes key moments in history that
brought America to the point of ending the lives of patients by denying
them food and water. He exposes the alarming margin of error associated
with diagnosing a patient of being beyond hope and he notes some
Bobby also directs us to the flickering light at the end of the
tunnel that may mean life or death, recovery or languishment, for many
thousands of people.
Last year Oregon’s State Senate passed a bill redefining food and
water when given by a cup or spoon, as “medical care.” Thankfully it was
tabled in the House. Had it passed, patients who were alert and aware
but unable to feed themselves may have been denied food and water.
This frightening legislation isn’t a giant leap in logic from the
laws in all 50 states that allow patients’ lives to be ended by denying
them food and water. Yes, every state.
The term Persistent Vegetative State (PVS) means a complete
unawareness of self and environment. It was coined by just to
physicians, and it degrades and dehumanizes unresponsive or minimally
aware patients, relegating them to the category of grocery produce.
PVS is arbitrary and subjectively applied to patients. In addition,
research shows it has been misdiagnosed as much as 48 percent of the
time. If that were the case with heart disease there would be an
immediate stampede to rectify the situation.
Once a patient is labeled with PVS it’s difficult to undo and they
are often denied insurance benefits for rehabilitation when it’s needed
the most, their first signs of recovery are often overlooked, or it can
lead doctors to persuade families to “let them go” by withdrawing food
The flickering light at the end of the tunnel is this: New medical advancements
have allowed doctors to better diagnose brain-injured patients. And the
European Task Force on Disorders of Consciousness recommends the
medical community abandon PVS and replace it with “unresponsive
wakefulness syndrome.” It jettisons the dehumanizing “vegetative”
language and infers the possibility of some level of recovery.
Santiago Ramón y Cajal, one of the founders of modern neurology,
believed that the human brain was “hardwired” and unable to fix itself
in the wake of an injury. However, Dr. Joseph J. Fins’ research now
suggests the brain has a capability of “rewiring” itself to some degree.
Even more is being done to assist this process with adult stem cells.
To help protect you and your family from the potential withdrawal of food and water against your will, please check out our free resources.
No patient should ever be subjected to death by dehydration and
starvation. We wouldn’t do that to an animal, so why are we doing it to
our own human family?
Brad serves as chairman of the board for the Terri Schiavo Life & Hope Network.
President, Life Issues Institute
Life Issues Institute is dedicated to changing hearts and minds
of millions of people through education. For 25 years, organizations and
individuals around the world have depended upon Life Issues Institute
to provide the latest information and effective tools to protect
innocent human life from womb to tomb.
Full Article & Source:
Sliding towards euthanasia in Oregon