Skip to comments.Fight over Florida woman's fate (BBC on Terri Schiavo)
Posted on 10/05/2003 12:01:06 PM PDT by nickcarraway
In a room in a hospice in Pinellas Park, Florida, a woman named Terri Schiavo lies in bed. By various accounts she reacts and even interacts with staff and visitors.
But she has been incapacitated since suffering brain damage after a collapse in 1990 and her husband Michael says it is now time to let her die as she would have wished.
Mrs Schiavo needs no machines to keep her heart, lungs or other organs working but must be fed through a tube to her stomach - without this source of nutrition, she would die.
Her parents, Robert and Mary Schindler, say Mr Schiavo wants to free himself from his wife so he can re-marry. They also say he has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in a fund for her care on legal costs. Mr Schiavo's lawyer says the money has been spent on medical bills.
The Schindlers have petitioned a federal court to try to overturn a ruling won by Mr Schiavo for the feeding tube to be removed at 1400 local time on 15 October. A hearing has been scheduled for 10 October.
Because of the pending court cases, neither the parents nor Mr Schiavo is giving interviews. But the parents' position is clear from their petition and Mr Schiavo's lawyer, George Felos, speaks for his client.
Mr Felos told BBC News Online that Mr Schiavo had come to the conclusion that his wife could not recover after several years of hoping for rehabilitation. At that time, he decided he needed to follow his wife's wishes - expressed on more than one occasion - that she did not want to be kept alive by tubes.
"The case is not about what Michael wants or the parents want - it's about what Terri wants," he said.
But the Schindlers accuse Michael Schiavo of making up his wife's wishes and say he has denied her rehabilitation treatment they believe could have helped her to learn how to eat again and so live without the feeding tube.
The parents' petition says Mr Schiavo has "generally deprived Terri of her dignity as a human being, and treated her as though she were already dead".
It accuses him of "deliberately and maliciously" abusing the special relationship he has with his wife who also became his ward after her collapse through, among other things, "his decade-long campaign of deliberately degrading Terri's neurological responses by a calculated plan of sensory deprivation; his looting of Terri's guardianship estate for attorney fees in the effort to have her killed, contrary to his promises to the jury about how the money would be used; and his cohabitation with another woman, during which he has fathered two children out of wedlock".
After the petition was filed, however, George Felos said: "I would hope that the federal judge looking at this realises this is just an attempt to rehash what has gone on before.
"I think a federal judge is well aware that he doesn't have jurisdiction. Beyond that, it must be pointed out that so much of what is in this complaint is just an out-and-out lie."
So far, court rulings have swung between the two sides. Mr Schiavo has won orders from a judge that the feeding tube be removed - and it was taken out for two days in April 2001.
But various appeals and stays have also been allowed, though both the Florida Supreme Court and the US Supreme Court have refused to become involved.
Doctors chosen by the two sides to give medical opinions disagree on whether there is any hope of recovery for Mrs Schiavo, though a court-appointed physician agreed with Mr Schiavo's experts that there was none.
Dr Robert Walker, who teaches ethics at the University of South Florida's medical school, said it was a difficult case for all concerned.
The one question is really making an accurate diagnosis of her brain damage and what her capacity is and whether there is potential for improvement
He told BBC News Online that it was near-impossible to say who was right and who was wrong given the fact that Mrs Schiavo - who was only 26 when she collapsed - had made no living will saying exactly what treatment she would want.
"It would be wrong to treat someone in her condition against her will but it would be wrong to discontinue treatment if she wanted it to be continued," he said.
Dr Walker said Florida state law did not differentiate between not starting medical procedures - which by its standards includes the use of a feeding tube - and stopping them.
But he said there was a great emotional difference for patients, their relatives and doctors between deciding not to do something - such as shocking a patient's arrested heart - which might prolong life, and withdrawing treatment which would lead to death.
In this case, however, he believed that the manner of death need not be a factor.
Mr and Mrs Schindler say their daughter would die slowly and painfully from starvation. Such a death would be a graphic and horrifying thought to most people, but Dr Walker said Mrs Schiavo simply does not feel hunger or thirst.
Terri Schiavo's parents say her husband has "deprived her of her dignity"
Mrs Schiavo's brain scans have not been made public but Dr Walker has followed the case closely through media reports and court records.
"The majority of her cerebral cortex - the part of the brain that thinks and feels - has been destroyed and replaced by fluid," he said.
"She doesn't have any perception, there is no reason to believe she can suffer."
Unlike a patient in a coma, Dr Walker believes there is no hope for recovery for someone in Mrs Schiavo's condition - known as permanent vegetative state - because the cerebral cortex does not regrow once destroyed.
Despite the medical term, however, video of Terri Schiavo on a website run by her parents' supporters shows her more like a baby. But this is misleading as the movements are purely reflexes, Dr Walker says.
"The hard part of it is when you look at her, her eyes open, she blinks, she moves her head. If you do things that seem to be uncomfortable she will recoil from that but all of these things are known to be reflexive," he said.
"Terri Schiavo is very much alive, she is not in any sense dead, but she is severely brain damaged.
"The one question is really making an accurate diagnosis of her brain damage and what her capacity is and whether there is potential for improvement. These are matters for medical experts - that's a proper role for physicians.
"What's not proper for physicians is to be deciding whether Terri Schiavo continues in this way or not. That should be going by her wishes... it's not what others would want for her but what she would want for herself."
25 February 1990: Terri Schiavo collapses at home
November 1992: Michael Schiavo wins case against doctors he accused of misdiagnosing his wife; awarded $700,000 for her care and $300,000 for himself
29 July 1993: Schindlers file petition to have Mr Schiavo removed as Mrs Schiavo's guardian; case later dismissed
May 1998Mr Schiavo files petition to remove Mrs Schiavo's feeding tube
11 February 2000: Judge Greer rules feeding tube can be removed
20 April 2001: Schindlers win a stay to exhaust appeals
23 April 2001: US Supreme Court refuses to intervene
24 April 2001: Feeding tube removed from Mrs Schiavo
26 April 2001: Judge orders doctors to reinsert tube
22 November 2002: After more hearings, Judge Greer rules there is no evidence that Mrs Schiavo has any hope of recovery and orders tube to be removed on 3 January 2003
13 December 2002: Judge Greer stays order to remove feeding tube to allow appeal
6 June 2003: Appeal court upholds Judge Greer's ruling
26 August 2003: Florida Governor Jeb Bush asks court to appoint new guardian for Mrs Schiavo; court does not act
17 September 2003: Judge orders feeding tube removal on 15 October
22 September 2003: Parents petition federal court
10 October 2003: Federal court hearing due
15 October 2003: Tube removal scheduled
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Michael Schiavo is a blatant, bold-faced liar. He petitioned Judge Greer to allow him the right to raid the $750,000 trust fund set aside for Terri's care and rehab, in order to pay euthanasia oriented atty, Felos, in his efforts to have Terri executed via starvation and dehydration. Michael Schiavo could have divorced Terri at any stage during the past thirteen years, but has instead been cohabiting with another woman with whom he has one child and another expected. This man is a liar and has refrained from divorce for other than 'religious' reasons ... an adulterer doesn't have the moral capital (read credibility) to claim he is avoiding divorce because of his religion!
And her attempts to talk are only reflexes too? Smiling at her mother and trying to hug back is a reflex? Sorry doc, I'm not in the market for a bridge.
Are we supposed to agree that
death is a medical improvement for Terri?????
Beam me up, Scotty.
Scientists have been wrong about the brain in the past.
Textbook rewrite: brain cells can regrow Friday, 15 October 1999
A Princeton study has added to mounting evidence for the brain's ability to regenerate by showing, in adult monkeys, that new nerve cells are continually added to the cerebral cortex, the largest and most advanced part of the brain.
Elizabeth Gould and Charles Gross report in the current issue of Science that the formation of new neurons or nerve cells, neurogenesis, takes place in several regions of the cerebral cortex that are crucial for cognitive and perceptual functions. Their results strongly imply that the same process occurs in humans.[snip]
The Princeton scientists found that the new neurons were formed in the lining of the cerebral ventricles, large fluid-filled structures deep in the center of the brain, and then migrated considerable distances to various parts of the cerebral cortex. This type of migration had never been seen before.[snip
Within the cerebral cortex, the researchers found neurogenesis in three areas: 1) the prefrontal region, which controls executive decision making and short-term memory; 2) the inferior temporal region, which plays a crucial role in the visual recognition of objects and faces, and 3) the posterior parietal region, which is important for the representation of objects in space.
Interestingly, there was no sign of neurogenesis in a fourth area, the striate cortex, which handles the initial, and more rudimentary, steps of visual processing.
I honestly believe that if there was not so much money involved this poor mistreated woman would have been already dead. Her life would not have meant so much to everyone, from the doctors, the lawyers, her husband, ect.
Get your wishes on paper and make sure that at least two people you love and trust have copies, and that both understand your beliefs concerning your idea of "quality of life".
"The care of human life and happiness, not their destruction, is the first and only legitimate object of good government." - Thomas Jefferson
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- If W doesn't save Terri Schiavo NOW in '03, then I will lose interest in him and hope that he is a mere w in '05 ! George W. and Jeb had better get with it!
And Arnold (and others in CA, and across America) could make a statement too - the Travesty in the killing of Terri Schiavo.
MURDER in the Making - in the Sunshine State! - (Florida)
EUTHANASIA SCANDAL to Erupt in Florida! Posted on 10/14/2003 10:25 PM CDT by conservative111
if Jeb can find the authority to order privately held orange trees infected with a minor blight to be destroyed to prevent the massive infestation of the same to the commercial orange orchard/factories that are such a powerful lobby in his state, why doesn't he use his same authority to save Terri's life? Extralegal measures are not new to him. (before the Bush v. Gore fiasco--he ordered Katherine Harris to certify the results in favour of his brother), Extralegal measures are nothing new for chief executives--from kicking the cherokee people out of their land under Jackson, to the blockade of Cuba (technically an act of war--which only Congress can authorize) under Kennedy, chief executives have taken advantage of extralegal measures to the benefit of a percieved interested majority.
12 posted on 10/18/2003 12:28 AM PDT by Schwaeky (Lex mala, lex nulla--if the law is bad, then the law is null)
In a message dated 10/18/2003 11:19:17 PM Eastern Daylight Time, firstname.lastname@example.org writes:
Terri did have a swollowing test done several years ago. From what I understand, the last time she was tested was when the lawsuit was initially started several years ago.
A nurse on the AOL Message board insists that a swallowing test is REQUIRED BY LAW every 6 months if you have a feeding tube and I KNEW Terri had not been getting them,
"Human rights are not a privilege conferred by government. They are every human being's entitlement by virtue of his humanity."
- Mother Theresa ("Notable and Quotable," Wall Street Journal, 2/25/94, p. A14)
Sunday, October 19, 2003 9:09 AM
Kangaroo courts and the Executive Power / Terri's will to live
10/18/03 -- Jeb's Emails to FR poster, summer, today, re: Terri. (And, a Message to Michael Shiavo)
Posted by pc93 to No More Gore Anymore
On News/Activism 10/19/2003 8:32 AM PDT #204 of 214
To: Lawdoc; dixiegrrl; supercat; Pegita
Rumours have been flying aroun the internet and people are getting things mixed up. This summary on one page seems to be the most accurate.
"Judge George Greer: Ruler of the Kangaroo Court set on killing Terri Schiavo. Impartial? Not in the least! Worked side by side as county commissioner with Barbara Sheen Todd (county commissioner) for eight YEARS. Barbara Sheen Todd is on the board of the hospice. Also, Judge Greer's fellow judge, Judge John Lenderman is the brother of Martha Lenderman (also on the hospice board! See the Hospice Board members! Greer accepted as the basis of his rulings, the questionable testimony of Michael Schiavo (and his family) that Terri would wish to be killed, yet Michael never stated that before he got about a Million Dollars to care for Terri forever. Greer also accepted as the basis of his rulings, the "opinion" of a third doctor who just happens to be the brother of a close associate of George Felos, right-to-kill attorney, and very significantly, former CHAIRMAN of the hospice board! If there ever was a rigged court, Judge Greer's is it!"
398 posted on 10/19/2003 4:41 AM PDT by TaxRelief
Post Reply | Private Reply | To 190 | View Replies
The war for Terri Schiavo's life- some links
Posted by pc93 to IcelandicConservative
On News/Activism 10/19/2003 8:30 AM PDT #412 of 417
Ok. Sorry. Yes she is conscious but Jeb needs to do something straightaway as she has gone without food or water since Oct. 18 at 8AM.
Jeb has the duty to uphold the laws of Florida. He has been notified that a murder is taking place in his state on his watch, to a defensless diabled person. She is being starved and dehydrated against her will, upon the false testimony that she is brain dead and wants to die. She is not either.
Sunday, October 19, 2003 9:00 AM
JEB PLEASE SAVE TERRI NOW
TERRI HAS BEEN WITHOUT WATER AND NUTRITION SINCE
OCT. 15TH 8AM. PLEASE BESEECH JEB TO SAVE HER
AS HE IS THE ONLY ONE LEFT WHO HAS THE POWER
TO DO SO VIA EXECUTIVE ORDER.
----- Original Message -----
From: "Tammy Nicholas"
Sent: Sunday, October 19, 2003 3:34 AM
Subject: [helpterri] Fwd: IMPORTANT UPDATE ON TERRY
And Very Important Info
> --- TERRISHOPE@aol.com wrote:
> > From: TERRISHOPE@aol.com
> > Date: Sun, 19 Oct 2003 03:26:35 EDT
> > Subject: IMPORTANT UPDATE ON TERRY And Very
> > Important Info
> > To: TERRISHOPE@aol.com
> > Hi Everyone,
> > I have to do this ... this way, I have (many of
> > know this) tried to email
> > you all one on one and I just can't keep up, I am
> > losing it here. So it's a
> > MASS mail now, PLEASE bear with me. Let me try
> > tell you all ... all I
> > know and some other things as well. First of all,
> > there are many rumors going
> > around and they are making me mad, but I have got
> > ignore them because I don't
> > have TIME to waste and you know what, neither do
> > you. So if you want to
> > listen to me and believe me that''s a good thing,
> > because you will only get FACTS
> > from me, no made up BS. This isn't a game. And
> > I am half dead here I can
> > just imagine how all of you are holding up. You
> > fighting none stop, many
> > of you are putting ALL of your time and efforts
> > this and you are
> > AMAZING!! God bless all of you!!
> > Okay now, first off... Terri as of RIGHT NOW 2 AM
> > Florida time has been
> > without food, water and any meds (meds that I am
> > aware of) for 88 hours. Her tube
> > was removed HOURS AFTER her last feeding, remember
> > she was only being fed
> > twice a day. She is still responding and aware!!!
> > She is still fighting for her
> > blessed life! "She has a will to live people!!!"
> > We have got to be her
> > voice, we just have to, it is the RIGHT thing to
> > we can't give up on her, this
> > has got to be a sign to us ... how much more can
> > anyone take, her, her parents
> > and us??? I don't know, you all tell me. It is
> > said God will NOT put more
> > on you then you can bare!!! Do you believe that??
> > I think Terri's family is
> > our LIVING PROOF!
> > I have been asked MANY questions about many
> > different things, a lot I can
> > tell you, some I can't and some is just simply NOT
> > important, please trust me. I
> > am in contact with the family and also someone who
> > is closer to this daily!!
> > I will NOT let you be in the dark, you guys made
> > Bush act!! He may not
> > have done anything more then PROMISE the family
> > he would stop this if at
> > all possible, but WE are making him KEEP his
> > now!!! Trust me, your
> > voices were hear and they were loud! None of you
> > are allowed to get a sore
> > throat now... Keep BOMBARDING Jeb Bush and
> > I send you email address's
> > to... and keep the faith. Something will happen.
> > For those of you who have asked... Terri is not
> > allowed flowers, teddy bears,
> > a comfortable, soft warm socks, she is allowed
> > NOTHING! She never as had
> > flowers, cards or stuffed animals to brighten her
> > days ... her loving husband
> > Michael will NOT allow it. She is not allowed a
> > wash rag on her lips. They
> > will put Vaseline on mouth. That's it folks.
> > Please read my emails ... this
> > was stated in the past, however I realize many of
> > you have just recently
> > joined this team of Angel's and I do mean ANGELS
> > so to those of you who are
> > new...WELCOME, God BLESS YOU and I am sorry we
> > too meet like this, all of
> > us.
> > But do you all realize that that sweet woman who
> > even now while she lays
> > dying is bring sooo many good people together.
> > is STILL spreading her love,
> > the same love she spread to everyone who knew her
> > before her night of hell.
> > Terri to my knowledge (someone heard this rumor
> > ask me) is NOT chained to
> > her bed. She may be restrained because she may
> > grand Mal seizers because
> > of the lack of fluid in her system, lets pray not.
> > Which is a reason they may
> > restrain her ... but No she is not chained to the
> > bed. God bless her. :(
> > This is killing many of us too... Precious ones I
> > KNOW how you feel, all of your
> > feeling are sooo real, it hurts!
> > Tomorrow morning at 10 am anyone and everyone who
> > can get up to that hell
> > hole hospice house (God please forgive me as I
> > Hospice does do good for
> > many, it has also helped those I've loved and lost
> > in the past) it is just THAT
> > place that has me crazy!! But anyone who can
> > the protest PLEASE, PLEASE
> > go, even if only for 30 minutes, but I assure you,
> > if you go up there or down,
> > whatever the case my be, you'll want to stay for a
> > while, you just will. But
> > then it will weaken you and the feelings of
> > overwhelming sadness will make
> > you want to come home again, but d not let that
> > you, PLEASE!
> > As this family is horrified, grief stricken and
> > slowly dying with their
> > daughter/sister, they will STILL welcome you with
> > open arms!!!!! I promise you
> > that, find them among the crowd or in the camper
> > that is parked right there
> > across the street and tell them who you are and
> > them you are with Lisa and the
> > TERRISHOPE group, They will know exactly who you
> > are, just not your name.
> > Sometimes there are 5 supporters there, sometimes
> > sometime 50 and sometimes
> > as many as 200. It changes constantly, but the
> > that go, the better. And
> > yes, people stay through the night, all night we
> > did.
> > There are people from all over the world there I
> > swear to you, all the way
> > from Germany! I have met wonderful people, from
> > Colorado, Ga. Nebraska,
> > Washington, Calif. ... all over!! I was sooo
> > touched and I know you will be too...
> > All walks of life, red, yellow, black and white,
> > Jesus had all in his site!! I
> > started everyone singing God bless America,
> > Grace, Jesus us loves us,
> > we talked, we prayed, we cried, we paced, we
> > out Bush save Terri over
> > and over to the lying media! You guys just
> > lucky enough to hear us
> > because they cut a lot of it out! We yelled out
> > many things, you just take the
> > steps and get everyone to join in ... do not be
> > afraid, someone has to get
> > people there started, but keep it peaceful! And
> > when someone is being
> > interviewed try and stay quiet. You can talk to
> > others about your feelings we all did,
> > many are full of anger, many are silent and just
> > pray and that's okay too.
> > Be advised ... be very ready for someone in the
> > media to interview you,
> > there's a good chance of that, be ready to speak
> > be calm and be clear that
> > Terri is NOT in a coma, that she is not a
> > that she is being murdered
> > and you are there because you want it stopped! Be
> > ready folks! I was
> > interviewed 5 times!! There is media there local
> > and National from all over, although
> > it has really slowed way down, BUT it will pick
> > up now that Voters will
> > be shredding their voters registration cards
> > tomorrow and they also will have a
> > Sunday service for Terri. Also there are MANY
> > police officers there, more
> > now then before and honestly I found them all to
> > very nice, just do NOT step
> > on the grass that belongs to the hell hole!!! You
> > will be confronted!
> > As for Jeb Bush, YES ... he can and it is his DUTY
> > to stop this, what he has
> > said is political bull caca! HE CAN SAVE HER ...
> > he doesn't, I'd hate to
> > be in his shoes. HE NEEDS TO DO THIS and do it
> > YESTERDAY!!!!!!!!!! Believe
> > me, this is TRUE, he CAN do it, it is in his
> > STAY ON him and the others
> > whom I email you about and don't stop fighting
> > we no longer have any
> > reason to fight. Then we can deal with the rest
> > the evil ones ... they will
> > hang!!
> > Okay, I hope for right now, just for tonight, I
> > answered some questions
> > for all of you. I really am trying and this is
> > effecting me too... I just
> > want t go into the closet and hide and cover my
> > ears. I can't bare to answer
> > my phone, it scares me, Jinks cell phone rings and
> > we hold our breath with
> > worry. So please believe me, I am really doing my
> > very best to keep you
> > informed at all times about everything, but I
> > tell you things that don't know
> > and I have learned already not to repeat what I
> > unless I hear it from the
> > family, because everyone has a different view on
> > they see AND hear things.
> > I am so tired dear ones ... just mentally and
> > emotionally drained and the
> > clock ticks on. It is now 3 AM :( and 89 hours
> > Our sister Terri ... without
> > food and water. :( Please keep praying hard for
> > her. Let Jeb Bush know
> > whenever you think about it, send him the hours.
> > Don't let him or his staff
> > forget through out the days. We will get through
> > this together. I will send
> > another update tomorrow and I will do this
> > if at all possible, more often
> > if I can ... THANK YOU ALL... Tammy you too honey,
> > God loves you ... your
> > doing a great job on our message board and once
> > again for anyone who wants to
> > join the message board that Tammy and I started
> > did the work, I am too dumb
> > with that stuff and it couldn't have done it
> > witrhout her) email me and I can
> > have Tammy get you started.
> > I hope all of you are in bed and resting. Boy, we
> > sure made quite a team
> > here didn't we? Somehow I am not at all
> > I PROMISE TO KEEP YOU ALL
> > POSTED with all the news good or bad as soon as I
> > know, you'll know, no matter
> > what it is. May God's Angels keep you safe and
> > surround you with "Our Saviors
> > Love" always, Lisa Pray for Terri PS here is the
> > address for the hell hole
> > hospice hose in Clearwater...
> > Hospice Woodside is located at 6774 102nd Avenue
> > North in Pinellas Park and
> > is just west of 66th Street North.
> > A group of Republican demonstrators are planning
> > shred their voter
> > registration cards and officially change their
> > affiliations in order to call
> > attention to the Governorâ?Ts refusal to intervene
> > on behalf of Terri
> > Schindler-Schiavo.
> > IF YOU WANT TO BE REMOVED FROM THIS MAILING
> > GROUP...PLEASE EMAIL ME AND TELL
> > ME...I will remove you within 48 hours and I
> > No uestions asked. Also
> > if you delete UPDATES or URGENT emails from me, I
> > will remove your name from
> > the list. God bless you one and all, Lisa
Craig Waters for the Supreme Court, (850) 414-7641,
email@example.com Brenda Johnson, for the Office of
the State Courts Administrator, (850) 922-5081,
Executive Office of Governor, Legal Team to Jeb (ask
to speak to the following individuals):
Robert H. Fernandez (Deputy General Counsel to
Governor) -> firstname.lastname@example.org
Raquel A. Rodriguez (General Counsel to Governor) ->
Christa Calamas (Assistant General Counsel to
Governor) -> email@example.com
850 / 488-3494 (voice)
850 / 488-9810 (fax)
Jeb Bush, Governor ->
Executive Office of the Governor
400 S. Monroe Street
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0001
Ask to speak to Lauren O'Conner
Attorney General Charlie Crist -> firstname.lastname@example.org
Office of Attorney General Charlie Crist
State of Florida
The Capitol PL-01
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1050
Main office telephone numbers
Additional added note:
A criminal investigation needs to be conducted by John
Ashcroft. Please demand of President Bush to initiate
an investigation so that Mr. Ashcroft can get
President George W. Bush
c/o The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave.
N.W. Washington, D.C. 20500
Fax: 1 202 456 2883
TTY/TDD Comments: 202-456-6213
Visitors Office: 202-456-2121
Although you'll get an automated response, here are
the e-mails for GW and Cheney:
President George W. Bush: email@example.com
Vice President Richard Cheney:
Fax: 1 202 456 2710
United States Attorney General John Ashcroft:
NOTE: Free faxing for entire Washington D.C. area:
Format of number to input is:
(ex. Pres. U.S. [POTUS]) -> 1 202 456 2461
(ex. Ashcroft) -> 1 202 514 1009
Vice Pres. Dick Cheney 1 202 456 2710
U.S. Senator John W Warner
1 202 224 6295
U.S. Senator Bob Graham
1 202 224 2237
House Representative Corrine Brown
1 202 225 2256
House Representative Henry Hyde
1 202 225 1166
Saturday, October 18, 2003 5:29 PM
People needed at Hospice Woodside, and also in Wash. DC. at the Whitehouse at 3PM and wherever you can
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