The Unfathomable Terri Schiavo ....

The Unfathomable
 
 Terri Schiavo was sentenced to death in Florida.
 
 As a father, I am outraged that a man has the right to kill someone else's daughter.
 
 As a human being, I am incensed that we allowed Terri,  who harmed no one, to be starved to death.
 
 As an American, I am flabbergasted that my country, which doesn't allow cruel and unusual punishment for those who commit crimes, punished Terri in such a cruel way when she committed no crime at all.
 
 As a religious person, I am disturbed that, Michael Schiavo,  a man who did not respect his wedding vows was allowed to err on the side of death with the very woman he was being unfaithful to.
 
 As a Rabbi, I am horrified that Michael Schiavo gets to decide that Terri's body should be cremated when her parents want a proper burial.
 
 As a law-abiding citizen, I question why a woman who did no crime received what amounts to capital punishment. If the courts felt she deserved it, perhaps  they should have done it by lethal injection. That's quicker and more humane.
 
 As a voter, I am outraged that some politicians did not feel it was important to vote on this issue of life and death.
 
 As a humanist, I am saddened to see all the groups that stir up a ruckus when it concerns animal rights were silent when it came to the rights of a breathing human being.
 
 As a health conscious person, I am puzzled why Terri was not given every test and treatment available - even experimental ones - to give her a fighting chance.
 
 As a counselor for the terminally ill and their families, I wonder how the doctors could consider killing a person who is not terminally ill or dependent on life support.
 
 As an advocate for justice, I am dumbfounded that in a life and death situation, experts knowledgeable in this case were not questioned - including Terri's nurses.
 
 As a former Commissioner of Human Rights, I fail to understand why there wasn't a full investigation into Michael Schiavo's actions leading up to Terri's collapse - especially the fact that he could have helped her when she originally collapsed and didn't.
 
 As someone who seeks medical treatment, I am troubled by the fact that the medical world was silent during this medical drama.
 
 As someone who deals with businessmen, I am at a loss to understand why the insurance company that paid out a million dollars for Terri's ‘lifetime' care is not suing Michael Schiavo for their money.
 
 As someone who is involved in politics, I am baffled why a governor who can give clemency to criminals didn't force the doctors to put the feeding tube back in.
 
 As someone who's concerned about our country, I worry that one judge was able to make a life and death decision, with no subsequent reopening of the original case.
 
 As someone who regularly works with prosecutors, I believe the judges who rendered decisions in this case should be questioned and investigated for aiding and abetting murder.
 
 Ultimately, there is no part who I am that is not disturbed that  a man can kill his wife - and get away with it.
      
 
Rabbi Shea Hecht
824 Eastern Parkway
Brooklyn, NY 11213
rabbishea@aol.com

Shea is chairman of the board of NCFJE ( National Committee for the Furtherance of Jewish Education). He is a Rabbi and activist in the Jewish community.
 
More than a decade ago , Shea Hecht came to national prominence as a community leader during the Crown Heights conflict in New York.
As a result, he was awarded with numerous awards by both government and private organizations for his work in fostering racial harmony. Shea was a member of Mayor Giuliani's task force on police/community relations. He also received the Community Relations Award from the American Jewish Committee for his leadership of the Crown Heights Coalition, seen as a model for healing a polarized community. For seven years, Shea Hecht was a Commissioner of Human Rights for the city of New York.
 
Since then as a chairman of the Board at the National Committee for the Furtherance of Jewish Education he has continued the tradition of social services management and outreach that began with his father, the late Rabbi Jacob J. Hecht.