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March 31, 2005

Disabled fear new Nazi America

From the Washington Post:

Grabbing attention with a brief, dramatic demonstration, disabled activists have been raising their voices throughout the final stages of the Terri Schiavo drama to send a message that Mrs. Schiavo, too, is a disabled person who is worthy of living.

"There is a perception that death is better than living with a disability," said Mary Lou Breslin, a senior policy analyst with the Disability Rights Education & Defense Fund in California.

And that, she said, should not be the case.

James Taranto (second entry) also pointed out the political fallout of the Terri Schiavo case, although fallout that has already occurred.

Yesterday we speculated that the Terri Schiavo case may help Republicans and hurt Democrats among voters who suffer from disabilities, who have obvious reasons to look skeptically at claims that a low "quality of life" makes life not worth living. We actually visited this issue last year: In September, we noted that President Bush was doing surprisingly well in a Harris Interactive poll of disabled Americans. He led John Kerry 48% to 46%. A similar poll a month earlier had given Kerry a 50% to 40% lead.

Our thought then was that disabled voters were put off by Kerry's clumsy exploitation of the wheelchair-bound Max Cleland, but blogger Ed Jordan offered a better theory, which we noted the following week: that the swing was owing to the Florida Supreme Court's striking down a law designed to save Mrs. Schiavo's life. As Jordan wrote, "there is good reason to believe they are sensitive to the fact that liberals like Senator Kerry want to give them the right to die, while conservatives like President Bush want to give them the right to live."

The disabled have a right to fear. Just this morning FoxNews reporter Loren Greene, apologetically pointed out that a relative of hers with cerebral palsy is unable to speak clearly, very much like the recording of Terri Schiavo circulating on the internet. Odd that someone with real life experience has to mention it apologetically, while the transparent lies of pro-euthanasia activists are reported as fact by “journalists” at the same network.

Posted by Danny Carlton at March 31, 2005 10:33 AM

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