Tuesday, July 12, 2011

P.S.V. B.S.

Kathleen Gilbert reports that "more experts are beginning to question the validity of the 'persistent vegetative state' (PVS) diagnostic label" — Cracks start to show in ‘vegetative state’ diagnosis. "The implications of their work are haunting. It suggests that many of the estimated 250,000 to 300,000 or more people in this country languishing in bedrooms and nursing homes with disorders of consciousness are probably still ‘in there’ - still have some capacity to think and to feel and might, in a limited way, be able to rejoin the world."

This is nothing new to readers of this blog — An Inside Look at "Persistent Vegetative State" and Science Too Late For Terri Schiavo.

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3 Comments:

Blogger Mark in Spokane said...

Thanks for posting this -- this is a critical bit of information. As with the embryos on ice in fertility clinics, we have large numbers of people being warehoused in this country. With the people with brain damage diagnosed as PVS, they are likely enduring tremendous suffering from their isolation. And for some unfortunates like Terry Schiavo, they are killed so as to not "inconvenience" others. Horrific.

Of course, there is no libertarian answer to the problem posed by frozen embryos and medically dependent disabled people. The proper answers must be found in human community, the ideas of the common good, of natural justice and natural law, in the Permanent Things discussed by Kirk and Eliot and others. It is there that the answers are to be found.

1:54 PM  
Blogger The Western Confucian said...

The "libertarian answer to the problem posed by frozen embryos and medically dependent disabled people" is "do no harm." There is no freedom to murder.

Libertarians are as capable as anyone else of appreciating "human community, the ideas of the common good, of natural justice and natural law," etc. They just believe these can be promoted by means other than the mailed fist of the State.

2:22 PM  
Blogger love the girls said...

The libertarian answer is that they don't have a contract with them, and thus are not responsible for them.

If it can be said, as the libertarians do say, that a mother doesn't have a contract with her own unborn baby and thus can remove her own baby from her presence at will without any responsibility to care for the baby, then they can certainly do the same with others.

And to say that abortion is not willful killing but simply removing a 'parasite' with whom the mothers doesn't have a contract is intellectually dishonest.

On this issue, and on any issue which concerns the common good, the libertarians stand on the same ground as Cain in his answer to God.

For libertarians, the rich man had every right to step over lazarus begging in the street.

St. Theresa of Avila comment of "Hell is where Lutherans go." into a more modern context :

Hell is where libertarians go.

11:20 PM  

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