You really blew it in your conversation with the Dittohead?you let him and Rush guide the conversation into the narrow scope they want to keep everyone?s noses pressed against. I know you?re only human; I won?t hold this against you certainly smile, but I need to address the issue:
Basically, the question they posed was: if you are against the death penalty because there's a chance that you could be wrong, why are you (and the Democrats) for taking out Terry Schaivo's feeding tube?
The answer is: because we care about the constitution.
The reason we have to worry about whether we're right about a death penalty case is because it is the State -- i.e. us -- making this decision, and taking action based on it. Because these people -- yes, convicted criminals -- are wards of the state, that makes them our responsibility. Because we can never be absolutely certain of their guilt, we can't take their lives, because we might be wrong.
Terry Schaivo, on the other hand, is precisely not our responsibility. She has people responsible for her -- her family. You, I, Rush, Mr. dittohead -- none of us really knows what's going on in Terry's head. None of us can be certain. Therefore it's up to the people in charge of her to make the decision about whether continued artificial means for supporting her life are appropriate. That's her husband, her blood relatives, and the courts charged with settling the dispute between them. We can't go picking a side and imposing our decisions on them -- that is the essence of the State reaching into people's personal lives.
(Yes, the courts are part of the State, but essentially they were asked to mediate the dispute; that's what courts are FOR. They are experts assigned to make the most informed, objective decision possible. By that very definition that means they cannot be subject to the whims of popular opinion.)
The same applies to abortion: we -- NONE of us -- really knows the answer to "when does life begin". We may believe in a particular answer, but since there is no way to prove it one way or another, it is really a question of religion. And therfore none of us has the right to impose their opinion on others. The government MUST STAY OUT of such decisions.
The Democratic party is "the party of civil rights" etc. precisely because we understand this. We understand that people must be protected from ABUSE by centers of power -- whether it's the government, other countries, major corporations, or common criminals.
Congress (state or federal) acting in the Terry Schaivo case is an act of abuse. Congress enacting laws banning abortion is another. The State putting people to death is a third.
The Democratic party, at its best, is the party of long-term thinking; of seeing the big picture. Of not letting momentary emotional concerns cause us to destroy our own future with poor choices. The Republican Party, as CLEARLY evidenced by recent events, is the party of greed, of short-term thinking. Of BIG GOVERNMENT and SMALL CULTURE. The T.S. case proves that the decades-long "States Rights" focus was a lie all along, because it served their interest at the time. Their actions are based on what looks good at the moment, just for the poeple in power and their select supporters. The future of the country, the world -- none of that is a concern to them.