As a libertarian, I’m pretty sensitive to privacy and to not having every act be political. People should be able to do what they damn well please as long as it doesn’t hurt other people or interfere in their ability to do as they damn well please. So let me start this off by giving my condolences to the Torres family for their loss and congratulations that they were able to bring their baby to term enough for modern science to give it a good chance. They have every right to make the choice they made, and in the end it seems to have worked out as well as could be hoped under the circumstances.
But since religious rightists glommed on to this situation after Terry Schiavo, I question the strange quietude that greeted today’s news that her husband had Susan Torres taken off life support, allowing her body to die. Here’s another case of a husband pulling the plug on a woman who would continue to live as long as the machines were applied. Now that the baby is out, all modern medicine could have been poured into fighting the melanoma on Susan so that her body might survive a while longer.
Most of those who argued vociferously for the government to interfere in the Schiavo family denied that the state of her brain had anything to do with it. A few predicated their opposition solely on the idea that she was not really brain-dead, but most said that brain-dead does not equal dead, and failing to save a life through inaction is as bad as taking it through action.
I can only hazard a guess as to why they were concerned but aren’t now: abortion. If the fetus had not been allowed to develop, it would have been an act of abortion. As long as everything was done to ensure that the fetus turned into a baby, they were happy. And since the guy didn’t have an abortion, they’ll forgive him allowing his wife to die in dignity. This once.
So what is it, culture-of-lifers? Do you believe in life in any state being better than death or not? For extra credit, explain why you’re not a pacifist, since innocent life under a tyranny would be more pro-life than death on the battlefield.