I signed off my talk show yesterday, stuffed unused newspaper articles in my briefcase, and headed home. As I pulled out of the studio parking garage I did what I usually do ? I tuned in to see what Rush was talking about. On this particular day I had no doubt as to what the subject would be, but I wanted to hear his latest thoughts.
My studio getaway was so efficient, so swift that I was on the road in time to hear Rush come out of his hourly newsbreak. Now ? before I go any further, let it be clear; I?m a Rush Limbaugh?s fan. Nobody does talk radio better, not even me. I love what he?s done for our radio format, what he?s done for America, and what he?s done to the left. Liberals hate him. I love him for that too. Rush has made me money by elevating the talk radio format to the top of the heap, and saved me even more through the tax cuts that came from his promotion of the Republican agenda.
As Rush opens the hour he has a question; a question for ?you liberals.? He wants to know ?Why do you want Terri Schiavo to die??
I?m on the opposite side of this issue from Rush, Hannity, Liddy and most of my not-liberal talk radio colleagues. So the question intrigued me. Why, indeed, do I want Terri Schiavo to die?
Rush?s question deserved an answer. Not some glib response, but an honest, heartfelt answer. So, ? here?s mine.
I want Terri Schiavo to die because I believe she?s earned it.
I don?t view death as the end of the journey of a human soul. I view it as a transition. The God I believe in would not waste the total life experiences of a man or woman made in his image on a total and complete death; a dead end, if you will, with nothing to follow. I cannot believe that it is God?s plan that the life experiences of a man; wisdom gained, lessons learned and love experienced, should, upon death, disappear as if they never were. I believe that there?s something to follow the life we know on this earth; and I believe that most of the people fighting to keep the body of Terri Schiavo alive feel the same way.
These feelings give rise to some questions of my own; questions for the devoutly religious people who are fighting to keep Terri Schiavo alive. Do you believe in God?s promise of everlasting life? Do you believe that the reward for a life well spent on this earth is a life with God in heaven after you die? If you do, then a few more questions if you will.
Do you believe that the human soul can make the transition to everlasting life while the human body that carried that soul through life clings to life on this earth? If you do, then you must surely believe that Terri Schiavo has earned and is already enjoying her reward in heaven. That being the case, why is it so important to you that the now-unneeded body of Terri Schiavo is kept alive?
But perhaps you believe, as I do, that the human soul is so connected to and integrated with its earthly body that any transition will not be made until that body ceases functioning -- until death occurs.. That being the case, why do you so ardently desire that the soul of Terri Schiavo spend five, ten, perhaps 30 years or more trapped in a useless and non-functioning body, unable to move on to whatever reward awaits her? Isn?t 15 years enough?
Where do your concerns truly lie, with the eternal soul of Terri Schiavo, or with her earthly body?
Most of us are aware of the stories related by people who have near-death experiences. The usual scenario is a surgical procedure or some other medical emergency. These people describe a sensation of leaving their body at the very time the heart stops beating and the brain ceases functioning. They tell of floating above their body while watching doctors below working hard to resuscitate, to bring them back to life. As the heart once again starts beating and as the brain resumes its functions, they tell of a sensation of falling back into their own bodies to resume life.
We don?t hear from the patients upon whom resuscitation efforts are not successful. We don?t hear from them because they?ve left us. They?re gone to experience whatever lies beyond. They died.
Is it possible that the soul of Terri Schiavo has been floating ? held in some prolonged and excruciating limbo ? waiting for doctors to stop interfering with the process of her death? I believe that this is so, and that is why I have supported her husband?s desires to have her feeding tube removed. Terri Schiavo isn?t being murdered. She?s being allowed to die. Death will not be an end for Terri Schiavo, it will be a beginning. She will finally be allowed to claim the reward that ultimately we all seek, a reward she?s earned and deserves.