Monday, March 21, 2005

BRAIN DEAD. I recently talked to a fellow whose aged, infirm mother passed on last year. At one point the woman was hovering between life and death, and the doctors had a talk with her son: we can probably revive her, they said, but she will certainly be brain dead and unable to breathe on her own. No heroic measures were taken, and the woman died peacefully.

This sort of thing -- for those of our readers unacquainted with life as it is lived by actual human beings -- goes on all the time.

Of course, but for an accident of timing, hordes of imbeciles might have forced Congress into an extraordinary session to get the mother on a respirator, or denounced the son as a murderer, or explained that the moral superiority of persistent vegetative states was proven by their childhood reaction to a "Star Trek" episode.

At the moment the American people seem to recognize what a lot of bullshit this whole Schiavo case is. But what they think hardly matters. The Republicans, flush with power, know that they can get away with a lot right now, and so are quickly handing out candy to their most powerful interest groups. The banks and financial companies got their turn with the Bankruptcy Bill, the oil companies got theirs with ANWR; now the Jesus Freaks are getting some play.

In the meantime, in case I can't scrape the money together for a living will soon enough, allow me to state here that I don't want to be kept alive in a persistent vegetative state, and hope my friends will act to end my misery should it come to that. I only hope the madness of our age doesn't make my wishes too hard to honor, and that no politically-motivated busybody gets the chance to exult over my drooling, mindless body.

No comments:

Post a Comment