Who Hijacked Our Country

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Terri Schiavo

Remember that scene from The Shining where Shelley DuVall sneaks over to the typewriter to peek at the manuscript her husband has been working on? And it turned out to be nothing but “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.” Over and over and over. Page after page, nothing but “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.” Hundreds, thousands of times. And the horrified, terrified look that crosses her face as she realizes that her husband has gone completely and totally bonkers, cuckoo, blotto...

After about a half hour of blog surfing, there are soooo many blogs talking about nothing but Terri Schiavo. After a point my head starts spinning, my vision starts to blur, and I know just how Shelley DuVall felt reading “all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy” over and over and over.

It finally just turns into this meaningless nonsense word, and I’m terrischiavo at the point of terrischiavo just seeing this same terrischiavo word, this terrischiavo mantra, out of the corner of my eye, embedded terrischiavo in sentences, hanging in the margins; it’s everywhere.

By this point I’m half expecting to turn around and see Jack Nicholson standing behind me with that manic, twisted nobody-home grin, holding an axe…

OK, here’s my request: most rightwing bloggers are moving, thinking and writing in total lockstep, coordinating their daily topics and buzzwords right down to the tiniest detail, right? OK, uh, could you guys take turns doing the Schiavo Shuffle? Do it in shifts, sort of? You know, some sort of group arrangement like “OK, Group A will write about Terri Schiavo today, and Group B will write about gay marriage, Ward Churchill, or anti-war protesters who hate America; and tomorrow we’ll switch.” Millions of online readers would be eternally grateful for the partial respite, the dialing down.

Oh, and this obsession with Terri Schiavo is all about principle and compassion, right? Has nothing to do with politics? In this column by Peggy Noonan, she comes right out and says that if Republicans are unable to save this woman’s life, they’ll face a backlash from their core voters.

Isn't it great to know this whole crusade isn’t about politics or a power grab or anything like that. Terri Schiavo is more than just a political football.



Blogger Markkind said...

The Reps in Congress have already lost my vote. They had no business getting involved in this and now I'd rather turn over congress to the Dems then leave the GOP in charge of a monopoly of the federal government. And believe me, I tried to avoid this topic as I don't do human interest stories but when Congress wipes their collective tush with the Constitution, that commands my attention.

March 22, 2005 at 7:28 AM  
Blogger Mac said...

Thank you for your post on Terry Schaivo. If enough of us, Republican and Democrat alike, rebuke the legilature's late-night Gestapo tactics, Terry and her husband may get some "justice."

March 22, 2005 at 7:39 AM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Markkind: I also try to avoid the human interest stories; but this Schiavo case has just smothered the mass media and especially the blogosphere. This sets a terrible precedent for Congress intervening in a family's painful dilemna.

Mac: I hope you're right. I think this cuts across party lines. I saw a poll on the TV news last night (I forget what channel) that showed a huge majority wanting Congress to stay out of this. It's too bad Congress is listening to their party bosses and the Powers That Be instead of We The People. Maybe some of them will be looking for work after the 2006 midterm elections.

March 22, 2005 at 12:43 PM  
Blogger Pauly Revere said...

I did not write on my blog this week to avoid writing about Terri since everyone else has.

However I do like your Sideshow Bob (Simpsons) approach.

March 22, 2005 at 5:40 PM  
Blogger Unadulterated Underdog said...

To quote President Clinton, "I feel your pain." I think the Republicans are using Schiavo as a rallying point in their struggle to say abortion is bad- or some other such thing. I think it's sad that if someone is so sick they are truly in a vegetative state and there doesn't seem to be any medicine or treatment to reverse the situation, keeping someone alive like that should be a sin if it isn't already. I would not like anyone to make me live like that. The Republicans should think about how they would feel if they were the ones being kept alive so they could sit in one spot not moving all day every day forever. That is inhumane.

March 22, 2005 at 6:24 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Pauly Revere: I wasn't planning to write about Terri Schiavo either, since everybody else already has. But I finally was so burned out on seeing Terri Schiavo on every blog, site after site, that I just had to write about how burned out I was.

OKDemocrat: I agree it's wrong for politicians to turn a family's tragedy into a political football. Some people talk about abortion (or even birth control) as "playing God." Keeping somebody artificially alive for 15 years -- if that's not playing God, I don't know what is.

March 22, 2005 at 7:12 PM  
Blogger windspike said...

When in doubt, Punt the Football back to the family where it matters most. In the end, this he said, they don't believe him, is crap. Not only that, it is none of our damn business. Why Congress felt the need to burn taxpayer dollars on this case is beyond me (well, not really, it is all politics and all politics are local).

Instead of posting on Terri today, I posted on a related topic - "The sanctity of life." Its the only one on my blog from today. Check it out and see what you think. So far, no comments

March 22, 2005 at 8:51 PM  
Blogger Dee said...

I feel your pain. I finally got around to posting a blip myself. I'm on the liberal side so you could guess how I could feel. I just found a nice passage and linked it to someone else. I passed the buck.

March 22, 2005 at 10:53 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Windspike: I just read your post. You're right. The hypocracy of Bush and Congress is just unreal. They don't put any value on life, judging by their policies on war, lack of protection for workers or patients, etc., and then they turn around and get all maudlin over a fetus, or parade Terri Schiavo all over the media. It's absurd.

Dee: That was a nice passage you quoted on your post.

March 22, 2005 at 11:39 PM  

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