Benjamin, Aaronson, Edinger & Patanzo, P.A.

Terry Schiavo matters

     A poll taken a few weeks after the death of Terry Schiavo might just indicate that there is still hope for this country.  The poll indicated that the American public in large majorities disapproved of Congress, Governor Jeb Bush and President George W. Bush’s handling or should we say meddling in the Terry Schiavo matter.  That same poll indicated a strong approval again by majority of the American populace in the Federal Court’s handling of the matter.  Even more Americans disapproved of the media’s coverage of the whole affair.

What does this mean?  It means the Neocon/Christian conservative wing of the Republican party with their media machine that controls the radio waves and to some extent television, were unable to force their view down the American throat.

Prior to the Terry Schiavo circus the right wing of the Republican Party was feeling invincible, they could do no wrong.  When they got us into war with Iraq and their premise for that war became blatantly wrong, they were still able to frame the debate as good versus evil and a subplot for the true believers as Christianity against infidels, and convincing a majority that it was somehow within this country’s best interest.  With the help of the conservative media, the President who virtually failed in everything that he attempted to do in his first term, as of this date borders are as porous as they have ever been and our airports are not safer than before 9-11,  was reelected under the theory that he will make us safer.

The alliance of the Neocon/Christian right, with the help of the conservative media, believe that not only can they remake Iraq in our image, but that they can remake America in their image.  

The Terry Schiavo debacle showed that there is a limit to their power.  Sure there will be bill after bill in Congress making this country more conservative.  There will be attempts to pass through judges of the most conservative ilk.  And yes, many of them will be approved.  Even if some are defeated the overall judiciary will be conservative or more than it already is.  Yes, they will and are having a profound affect on the future of this country.  Yet, if the Terry Schiavo matter shows one thing, it is that there is a limit to which the American people are going to be cojoled, lied to, or convinced.  If there is anything that the Terry Schiavo matter has shown us is that the American people truly still fundamentally believe in checks and balances of government and the majority of them do not want the fascist state the right wing of the Republican party is trying to create.

This is not said lightly.  This is said because the facts speak for themselves.  The talk of changing Senate rules so that minority voices can’t be heard and conservative judges can be pushed through is taking away a brick in the foundation of our democracy.  The threats to judges that they will be replaced or that they will get theirs by leading politicians in this country, is the same type of intimidation that the brown shirts and Nazi sympathizers used during their rise to power.  The controlling of the media, and no we do not have a propaganda minister as Hitler did, but rather serepticiously  our government pays for infomercials that back government policy in order to influence the people to support that policy, is another example of a government run amuck. We also have so called independent conservative talk show hosts being paid by the administration to talk about certain topics that the administration is trying to promote.  There is the  FCC now with the ability to fine  incidents of language that they do not approve of of up to $500,000.00.  On one hand the government is telling us how to think, on the other hand they re telling us what to say.

The Terry Schiavo matter should be a wake up call to all.  To the Democrats in Congress it should be a sign that there still is hope.  It should encourage them to speak out, push their issues, speak loudly and often.  It should tell them that the American people are still listening.

To the Neocon/Christian right it should be a reminder that they don’t own the country and have only been lent the government for a short time. It should tell them they still are out of the main stream and most Americans still believe in and want separation of Church and State.  

To those moderate Republicans in Congress, the message should have been clear.  The country is not as conservative as your party has become.  Give up your ideals and beliefs for party power and unity and you just might not have a job after your next election.

Terry Schiavo may be dead, but the Schiavo fiasco may just have breathed life back into our democracy.

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