Compleat Redneck

Commentary from the boondocks. If it makes any sense, it is just by chance.

Sunday, April 03, 2005
Cletus says he has to write one final serious essay and then it’ s back to the craziness you have grown to love at Compleat Redneck.

Until a couple of weeks ago, I thought of myself as a Right Wing Christian. I am anti-abortion since I think it is murder by another name. I do not trust any politician who says he is against abortion except for cases of rape and incest because the only reason I can figure for being against abortion is to believe it is murder. Aesthetic sensibilities do not count when you want to restrict another person’s freedoms. The only reason I can think of for allowing abortion is in cases where the mother’s health is at extreme risk and then it becomes a decision on who lives. I believe that in most cases, it should be the mother.

I said I was anti-abortion, not pro-life. There is a difference. I don not oppose capital punishment although I am concerned that not every police investigator and prosecutor acts honorably every time. That is a matter to be resolved by improving training and placing serious sanctions on fraudulent prosecutions not by eliminating capital punishment.

And I think law-abiding citizens should be allowed to own and carry any kind of weapon they choose including rockets and mortars. I do not stop at mere assault rifles.

Imagine my surprise to find that I have recently been redefined as a secular humanist not caring about life. I have become a member of the cult of death. So be it.

I see a “cult of life” in this country. For its members, all that matters in life. They want any life extended as long as possible, no matter what condition the person is “living” in.

I’m sorry but not every life should be extended as far as medically possible. The problem is we have learned to keep hearts beating long after the brain ahs ceased to work. Unless you are dying of cancer or have a really bad heart, apparently a hospital can keep you going just about indefinitely with respirators, feeding tubes and pacemakers. If you don’t care what happens to the brain, a heart-lung machine can probably keep your dead body warm for years. The cult of life would insist that it be used.

In the past two years, two of my older friends have died. One had colon cancer and fought it for over three years. He was a preacher and had served congregations for over fifty-five years. I went to his house and removed the bed he and his wife had slept in for over fifty years so Hospice could bring in a hospital bed. I was at his house a week before he died when he told me he was ready to get it over. A few weeks earlier, he had ended a round of experimental chemotherapy because he was tired of being sick two weeks out of three. He said his life had reached the point where living was just too hard.

Last month another friend died after falling and breaking her hip. It was not a major break; she just needed an excuse to die. She had been trying but her family kept interfering.

I am not in favor of assisted suicide. We start that and the next thing you know, doctors are deciding which babies have a chance at a “real” life. But I do believe that each adult has the right to say, “Pull the plug” or” do not take heroic measures”. I fear that there is a political movement to take a way that right. I mentioned to a friend that all the Florida Legislature had to do to save Terry Schiavo was to pass a law that no one could have feeding tube removed unless they had so specified in writing but that they didn’t have the political nerve to do that. I later learned that the Florida House passed just that act but that it narrowly failed in the Senate and today I read that Schiavo’s parents intend to lobby for the act as a tribute to her.

That is a ridiculous thing to do. I have not completed my living will but I have made sure all my relatives and friends know to just let me go. I do not need the Alabama Legislature or the Governor interfering and neither do you.