Monday, March 28, 2005

 

SAEN Compares DeLay & Schiavo

On Monday's front page the SAEN reprints a story from the Los Angeles Times that compares the experience of Tom DeLay's father to that of Terri Schiavo. Unfortunately for the SAEN, anybody who reads the story will quickly realize that the two cases are not similar at all, and the article can be seen for what it is: a hit piece on the SAEN's favorite whipping boy. So who is using Terri Schiavo for partisan gain now?

Michelle Malkin explains the differences between the Schiavo case and the DeLay case:
The DeLay and Schiavo cases are worlds apart, for heaven's sake, and it is patently unfair to compare the two. DeLay's father's had suffered broken ribs and a brain hemorrhage; he needed a tracheotomy and ventilator to assist his breathing; his kidneys failed; multiple infections ravaged his body. Unlike Terri Schiavo, he was in a state of steady deterioration and at death's imminent doorstep within days of his accident.

Unlike the Schiavo case, there was a family consensus among the DeLays and no dispute over what the father would have wanted. Moreover, DeLay was not the primary decision-maker in the family's choice to withhold heroic treatment. That role fell to his mother and another brother and sister.

There has been plenty of ugliness in the Terri Schiavo case, and to be honest it has come from both sides at various times. And now the SAEN has upped the ante by using Terri Schiavo's situation to misleadingly call Tom DeLay a hypocrite. Here is what DeLay's office had to say about the LA Times article:
"The situation faced by the congressman's family was entirely different than Terri Schiavo's," said a spokesman for the majority leader, who declined requests for an interview.

"The only thing keeping her alive is the food and water we all need to survive. His father was on a ventilator and other machines to sustain him," said Dan Allen, DeLay's press aide.

The editors of the SAEN should be ashamed of themselves, but we all know they won't be. I know it is only Monday, and I am loathe to make predictions, but I already see a clear front-runner for the "Outrage of the Week."
Comments:
I was hoping y'all would post on this topic...

Michelle Malkin is such a liar!

"..he needed a tracheotomy and ventilator to assist his breathing.."

No where in the story does it say that DeLay's father was on a ventilator at any time. Why would they do a tracheotomy if he was on a ventilator? That makes no sense. He was clearly breathing on his own.
Broken ribs can heal. Failed kidneys can be replaced with dialysis. The man was still alive and breathing on his own 27 days after the accident and there was no reason why he couldn't have been kept alive longer.

Unlike the Schiavo case, there was a family consensus among the DeLays and no dispute over what the father would have wanted.

Oh, and that makes it alright then? If the Schindlers had agreed with Michael Schiavo, then the religious right would have had no problem with them pulling the plug?

Moreover, DeLay was not the primary decision-maker in the family's choice to withhold heroic treatment. That role fell to his mother..

And why should we believe her? She was just his wife. The religious fundamentalists didn't believe Terri Schiavo's husband. How do we really know what the elder DeLay would have wanted since he did not leave a living will with explicit instructions?

Tom DeLay is clearly a hypocrite in this case because if he had followed the same path back then as he has today in the Schiavo case he would have denounced his mother as a murderer for denying his father that life-saving dialysis treatment.

And that's not all! The story goes on to note that DeLay was a hypocrite two times over in this instance because he also went along with his family's lawsuit against the company that made the tram equipment which they blamed for the accident that led to his father's injuries. The family won a reported quarter million dollars in a settlement and then a few years later Tom DeLay sponsored a law that would have prevented other families from winning similar product liability lawsuits.
Typical Republican I-got-mine, pull-up-the-ladder-behind-me attitude.
 
It was refreshing to read this perspective. I was disappointed that so many were anxious to draw comparisons between Delay's father and the Schiavo case. It was completely and apples and oranges scenario, and I'm glad you pointed it out.
 
Well, I am glad some people (Mike Thomas) can laugh at the misfortune of others.
 
Actually Mike, the SAEN story does include the fact that DeLay’s father was on a ventilator.
 
It looks like the LA Times story erred initially in saying DeLay's father was on a ventilator and the SAEN picked up the earlier version of the story. But if you check the LA Times story now (the one you linked to) you will notice that they have corrected that mistake and now say he was treated with oxygen equipment and not a ventilator. The oxygen tube in the nostrils is pretty much standard practice for most patients today. As I noted above, if he had been on a ventilator then they wouldn't have bothered doing a tracheotomy.
The story also notes that the family chose not to do the dialysis treatment when his kidneys failed and so the cause of death ended up being kidney failure, not pulling the plug on a ventilator.
 
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