Third Party & Independents Archives

The Slippery Slope of Death

People who tried to keep Terri Schiavo alive argued at times about a possible “slippery slope” that we could end up following if we allowed her feeding tube to be pulled while there was a controversy over what she wanted to have happen in the situation. And, while I disagreed with their view and believed that legally the proper channels were taken, it appears that they may have been right in the case of Mae Magourik.

Now, I'm not one to want to talk about Terri any more, I think we've all said about what we can say on that topic. However, the current situation is much more obvious in my opinion. As the reported story goes, Magouirk did have a living will expressing specifically what she wanted to have happen. She stated that if she was not in a coma or PVS that she did NOT want to have her feeding tube removed. She went in for surgery and the doctors say she will be fine, however her tube has been removed anyways and she now lays dying.

How did this happen? Again, according to reports, her granddaughter, who had legal power of attorney for her, moved her from the hospital to a hospice and then had the tube removed stating:

"Grandmama is old and I think it is time she went home to Jesus," Gaddy told Magouirk's brother and nephew, McLeod and Ken Mullinax. "She has glaucoma and now this heart problem, and who would want to live with disabilities like these?"

The Hospice was unaware of the living will. Once the sister and nephew of the woman found out what was going on, the hospice agreed to have the tube re-insterted and asked them to come to the hospice to fill out the paperwork. Once there, they were denied entry because the grandaughter went to a judge and was given guardianship over the well-being of her grandmother, despite having a legal living will stating the opposite.

Today, she still lays in the hospice and is denied nurishment. It is believed that she may not last through the weekend.

If ever there is a case where SOMETHING should be done and a judge's decision should be reviewed quickly, this is it. But, unfortunately, because of the massive media circus that was the Terri Schiavo case, it is likely that she will be left to die.

The nephew asked "What country did I wake up in?"

I'm inclined to ask that same question.

Ron Panzer, president and founder of Hospice Patients Alliance, a patients' rights advocacy group based in Michigan, told WorldNetDaily that what is happening to Magouirk is not at all unusual.

"This is happening in hospices all over the country," he said. "Patients who are not dying – are not terminal – are admitted [to hospice] and the hospice will say they are terminally ill even if they're not. There are thousands of cases like this. Patients are given morphine and ativan to sedate them. If feeding is withheld, they die within 10 days to two weeks. It's really just a form of euthanasia."

Patients who are not terminally ill are not suppose to be admitted to hospices. But, as we have been discovering lately, this is hardly enforced at all.

What good is a legal living will?

Why are will allowing a woman who is not terminal, who is not in a vegitative state, who does not have brain damage and who is expected to make a full recovery, to be killed?

Why are we making value of life judgements against the obvious wishes of the woman in question?

What the heck is going on in this country?

Posted by Rhinehold at April 8, 2005 5:33 PM