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Judge orders feeding for Florida woman

Florida Teri Schiavo Feeding Tube

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#41 GiGi

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Posted 25 February 2005 - 06:32 PM

Okay, here is a link from a source that is scientific, not found on the parents site and includes a doctor's response to a visit with Terri.  It is two years old.

http://www.newsday.c...ealth-headlines

Here is a link that has links to videos on it.  It appears to me the Terri's reactions are not random, especially in the first one where she responds to a story her father tells.  Timing is everything.

http://www.newsday.c...ealth-headlines

Here is a quote from one of her former nurses -

Quote

Nurses who tended to Terri Schiavo -- the Florida woman whose feeding and water tubes may soon be removed -- have stated in affidavits provided by her family that the 41-year-old has exhibited clear-cut behavior indicating she is conscious and aware of her surroundings.

In stunning testimony, one nurse, Heidi Law, a certified nursing assistant who took care of Terri when she was at Palm Gardens Nursing Home in Largo, Florida, in 1997, said that the severely disabled woman formed words such as "mommy, "momma," and most hauntingly, "help me."

"While it is true that those patients will flinch or make sounds occasionally, they don't do it as a reaction to someone on a constant basis who is taking care of them, the way I saw Terri do," claimed Law in a formal deposition. "I witnessed a priest visiting Terri a couple of times. Terri would become quiet when he prayed with her. She couldn't bow her head because of her stiff neck, but she would still try. During the prayer, she would keep her eyes closed, opening them afterward. She laughed at jokes he told her. I definitely know that Terri 'is in there.'"

The testimony, contained in affidavits provided to Spirit Daily by her family, the Schindlers, who are desperately attempting to prevent her death, contradicts widespread perceptions that Terri is a nearly brain-dead or comatose woman living in a vegetative state. In fact, by some indications the woman may have greatly improved had she been provided adequate therapy.

"I have heard her say 'mommy' from time to time, and 'momma,' and she also said 'help me' a number of times. She would frequently make noises like she was trying to talk," said Law.

Here is the link to this article - http://www.spiritdai...chiavoalert.htm

Here is a link to a page that has direct links to Heidi Law's affidavit as well as several from various MDs.  There are video links here, short ones and one that is five minutes long.

This is just the tip of the iceberg.  I for one after viewing these various videos and reading the affidavits have concluded that in no way is Terri dead or even a vegetable.  I for one strongly disagree with starving this individual to death, every time I look at this case I feel it stronger everytime.
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#42 Eskaminzim

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Posted 25 February 2005 - 06:44 PM

I looked over those articles and videos and saw nothing to convince me that the woman once alive is anywhere within that shell of a being, but to each her own.

A couple nit-picky things.  Ms Law is NOT a nurse.  She is a CNA.  There is a world of difference between an RN and a CNA.  A certified nursing assistant ASSISTS nurses, they aren't nurses themselves.  They do not have the training or the education nor the assessment skills to be nurses.  They are no better or worse, they just aren't nurses and to call them such gives them more medical authority than is warranted in their case.  

As an example, I worked in a Nursing home as an RN for a time, and a CNA was feeding a patient, and swore up and down that the woman had chewing reflexes and was swallowing her food, even though it was sticking out of her mouth and all around her bib and clothing.

Upon my assessment, I determined that the woman in question was stone cold and stiff, and had been dead for hours.

One of the articles you brought forward mentioned something interesting to me as well.  The parents were upset because her husband was "taking away their rights to make medical decisions for their daughter."

Um..as soon as she was married TO her husband, the family renounced the right to make those medical decisions.  He's not taking them away, they are his by right of marriage.  Not theirs anymore.

#43 GiGi

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Posted 25 February 2005 - 06:50 PM

Did you read the affidavits from the MDs?  All of them?  Well, I guess it is a matter of opinion, she in no way looks dead to me, especially the five minute one where she is look directly at and responding to her mother.

As I said the tip of the iceberg, but nothing will convince you so I really will not waste any more time doing so.
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#44 HubcapDave

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Posted 25 February 2005 - 06:54 PM

Gigi,

Usually we are on the opposite side of things, but this time we are in agreement. That does not look like a vegetable to me.

#45 Eskaminzim

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Posted 25 February 2005 - 07:08 PM

No, GiGi, we probably never will agree on the topic (though I am a devoted Kirkophile, so I *think* we can agree on that one), becasue I have an admitted bias based on what I do for a living.

But I do thank you for debating the topic with me and supplying information I hadn't seen before.

#46 GiGi

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Posted 25 February 2005 - 07:15 PM

Quote

Gigi,

Usually we are on the opposite side of things, but this time we are in agreement. That does not look like a vegetable to me.

I know, I shock all of my liberal friends for siding with "right to lifers."  Some of my liberal friends have changed their minds when they took the time to view the evidence and not just listen to sound bites.

It was actually Drew who turned me on to this case, I went to look at it just so I could tell him that he was wrong.  I instead saw that this is an unusual and complicated case.  I just watched the five minute video for the first time just now.  Terri's groans and grunts are not random.  In fact her communication is much like the responses I get from my pet pig.  That is not a put down at all, pigs are very intelligent and I can tell from his vocalizations to me what he is feeling and wanting.  In other words I have learned how to interpret types of nonverbal sounds from living with this animal for going on eleven years.  Of course I expect to be seen as crazy for saying this, but I feel strongly about it.  In fact Terri communicates much more than a lot of people who  I have seen with brain injuries or defects.

*edited for clarity to who I am responding to.

Edited by GiGi, 25 February 2005 - 07:17 PM.

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#47 Lin731

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Posted 25 February 2005 - 07:26 PM

This woman's situation begs several questions, moral and medical that have larger implications.

1.  How many doctors does it take to reach a conclusive opinion?

2 What is the criteria for that decision (aka...how much time do they spend evaluating the patient) over how long a time span, how familar are they with the patient?

3 And for me this is the hardest question. If it is determined that the patient  should be allowed to "die" can we not find a more humane way than a slow death brought on by starvation? If we have the conviction to decide someones fate, do we not also have the responsiblity to carry out that judgement in the most painless way possible?
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#48 GiGi

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Posted 25 February 2005 - 07:47 PM

^ Those are all very good questions...ones I have been asking myself
"Life is as dear to a mute creature as it is to man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not die, so do all creatures." -- HH The Dalai Lama

#49 schoolpsycho

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Posted 25 February 2005 - 08:04 PM

^

Well, when I've thought putting someone to death, as far as the way it's carried out, it's well, hollow for me, in the end.

Because, whatever method it is, it still would mean death.

It would make me feel no better, even if they didn't suffer.

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Edited by schoolpsycho, 25 February 2005 - 08:05 PM.

Love is hard...and all there is.

#50 Cheile

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Posted 26 February 2005 - 12:46 PM

Lin731, on Feb 25 2005, 05:26 PM, said:

This woman's situation begs several questions, moral and medical that have larger implications.

1.  How many doctors does it take to reach a conclusive opinion?

as many as the parents can talk into claiming someday Terri will wake up and be good as new  :rolleyes:

i hope the parents don't have time to go to battle over the decision that the husband can take out the tube in three weeks.  if her brain is liquid i don't see how she is still functioning at all.

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#51 GiGi

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Posted 26 February 2005 - 01:56 PM

^ That is the whole point of the fight, whether or not her brain is actually liquid or it is a lie told often enough that it has become the truth.

Ironically when Michael was trying to win a million dollars for Terri he did not think she was brain dead at all, quite the contrary.

Quote

From the trial : (answers are from Michael)

A Right here, basically, you can see she's dressed, she's already had her shower and everything. We would get her dressed, put her shoes and socks on. I'm trying out her hands there. You have to keep the inside of the hands, since she's contracted, you have to keep them dry because infection can set in, and I usually do a little bit of range motion with her.

Q. And while you're doing that, do you talk to her?

A. Yes, I am talking to her right now telling her it's okay.

Q. She doesn't like that very much?

A. No, she doesn't. She does feel pain.

And then a few sentences later from the trial :-

Q. Does she like that kind of treatment very much?

A. No, she does not. .. .

Further on in the trial :-

Q. I notice Michael, you're holding her head back. Why are you doing that?

A. Because she'll fall forward, and if she falls fast she gets excited. It's - - I was told by a doctor she was getting the feeling she's falling.

Later on the video showed a speech pathologist, working with Terri.

Q. You hoping he can get her to the point where she swallows?

A. Yes. You see here rubbing the bottom of her throat, that's, I don't know what the word is, gets them to swallow when you rub the bottom of their throat. She just swallowed that time. . . . . .

The video then shows a physical therapist working with Terri:-

Q. Does she express discomfort when some of these things are happening to her?

A. Yes. Yes, she does.

Q. How does she do that?

A. She'll moan and groan.

Link - http://www.useless-k...article345.html
"Life is as dear to a mute creature as it is to man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not die, so do all creatures." -- HH The Dalai Lama

#52 Cheile

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Posted 26 February 2005 - 02:10 PM

so you're going to tell me the doctors who say that she is brain-dead are lying?

and if you notice the date from that trial with the notes is November 5, 1992.  not long after this started.  back THEN, it was possible.  NOW it's highly unlikely.  her parents' insisting that she's actually functioning is a fantasy.

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#53 GiGi

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Posted 26 February 2005 - 03:16 PM

^It is possible the doctors saying that have not even seen her but have seen notes about her condition.  As I have said, I have spent hours looking over the facts of this case, it is not cut and dry.  

Are you saying that the ten or so affidavits from MDs who say she can be rehabilitated are lies too?  Who is telling the truth?  We all know that sometimes doctors will say there is no hope in a case and yet the patient makes a full recovery.  THat is why people get second opinions.

Did you watch any of the videos?  I see a disabled person, not a vegetable.  She is not on a respirator, and the only reason she hasn't been allowed to be fed by mouth is that her husband is not allowing any therapy for it.  Therapy that the court awarded her close to a million dollars to have.  When they last pulled the feeding tube Terri, who is Catholic was NOT allowed to have a host placed on her tongue for last rights (after six days of no food or water) by decree from her husband because it would constitute her being fed!!

Can you not see what is wrong with this picture?
"Life is as dear to a mute creature as it is to man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not die, so do all creatures." -- HH The Dalai Lama

#54 Cheile

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Posted 26 February 2005 - 06:11 PM

i've seen their mock up videos when news channels have discussed this debate.  an occasional blink or face twitch that they think could be a smile is NOT of a functioning individual.

it shouldn't be the husband's fault that he's accepted that his wife is, barring some tube that her parents keep insisting she have, dead.

add to that the point that she told him not to keep her alive artificially should something like this happen.  why didn't she tell her parents?  maybe because she felt telling her spouse was enough.  maybe because she somehow KNEW they'd follow this very course and she hoped (in vain) to prevent that.  why her parents can't accept that, i don't know.  but they need to realize that she's not going to snap out of this one day and be as they remember her.  hubby gets that; they don't.

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#55 HubcapDave

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Posted 26 February 2005 - 06:28 PM

Cheile, why do you discount that Terry's guardian ad litem concluded that what Michael is saying is not necessarily Terry's true wishes?

#56 Cheile

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Posted 26 February 2005 - 08:57 PM

Terri was a grown, married woman....why should her parents think they can still make all the decisions?

it's obvious why they claim Michael lies about Terri's wishes.  they want to make him out to be the villain.  they cannot let go where he has learned to over these fifteen years.  they cannot accept the truth--that their daughter will not be normal again even IF she snaps out of this.

pretty simple to me.

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#57 HubcapDave

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Posted 26 February 2005 - 09:38 PM

I'm not talking about the parents, I'm talking about this guy:

Quote

In June 1998, soon after Michael asked the court for permission to remove Terri's feeding tube, the court appointed Richard Pearse as Terri's guardian ad litem. His job was to investigate the facts of Terri's case and represent her interests in court.

At the 2000 trial, Pearse concluded that he had not found clear and convincing evidence that Terri would have rejected life support.

Pearse said he was troubled by the fact that Michael waited until 1998 to petition to remove the feeding tube, even though he claims to have known her wishes all along, and that he waited until he won a malpractice suit based on a professed desire to take care of her into old age. As her husband, Michael would inherit what is left of her malpractice award, originally $700,000, which is held in a trust fund administered by the court. Accounting of the fund is sealed. But Michael's lawyer, George Felos, said most of it has been spent on legal fees associated with the custody dispute.

Pearse also said he did not find Joan and Scott Schiavo's testimony credible.

This is from one of the MSNBC articles GiGi referenced.

#58 GiGi

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Posted 26 February 2005 - 11:13 PM

Thank you Hubcap Dave.  A feeding tube is NOT life support.  Many disabled people have them.  Terri does more than blink, in the five minute nonstop video she makes noises in response to what her mother says, it is not random.

To put to death a disabled person by one of the most horrible methods possible is beyond inhuman, it is insane.

I am still waiting for links to some kind of written evidence that proves Terri's brain stem is liquid or that there are no brain waves at all.   All I have seen is evidence that while she may not recover a normal life she is still sentient.  And I looked for places other than her parents website, which is of course biased.

I think what triggers everyone so much is trying to imagine living a life that Terri is living.  But one of the documents I came across in all my research was from a severely disabled person who was writing on Terri's behalf.  This person was not born that way, but became that way through and accident.  They were saying that no one can make a quality of life judgement for anyone else.  That even though they were severely handicapped, they loved life and had learned to life it to the fullest.  That where there was life, there was hope.

Terri is no where near death, this is not just letting go, this is withholding the substance of life, nourishment and water until she dies.  Why can't they just give her some time and some effort to let her learn to swallow.  Certainly her husband thought she could do it back when he was trying to get that million dollars to help her.  Why is he totally refusing to let her have that treatment now?  You may say because after all this time he has figured out it is hopeless.  According to sworn testimony he gave up as soon as he got the settlement.  Just connect the dots.
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#59 eloisel

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Posted 26 February 2005 - 11:48 PM

Wonder what prompted Terri - when she was 26 or younger - to make such a statement, that she would rather starve to death than live in the condition she is now in.  Considering she is physically healthy otherwise, it could take awhile for her to starve to death, more likely she will die of thirst.  Wonder who will stand by her bed and watch her writhe in pain as her body consumes its own mass and fluids to the point where her skin flakes, drys and cracks; her eyes sink back into their sockets; her lips crack, peel and bleed; and, her tongue splits open before her heart and internal organs fail.

#60 GiGi

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Posted 26 February 2005 - 11:53 PM

^ There is simple no evidence that she ever said that.  I need to search around but her clearest statements made about the issue was to a friend after seeing a movie about Karen Quinlin.
"Life is as dear to a mute creature as it is to man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not die, so do all creatures." -- HH The Dalai Lama



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