by Steven Ertelt
October 15, 2003
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- Doctors removed Terri Schiavo's feeding tube on Wednesday afternoon. Although Terri is not hooked up to any artificial breathing apparatus, the feeding tube provided her with food and water that allowed her to remain alive.
Terri's father Bob Schindler confirmed that the tube had been removed and attorneys for her husband, Michael, said doctors have told them it will take anywhere from a week to 10 days for her to die.
"I just haven't given up hope yet," Mary Schindler told reporters outside the hospice.
She watched along with Micahel Schiavo, who demanded that Terri's live be ended, and was reportedly "visibly shaken" and distraught afterwards.
Terri's parents are clinging to an 11th-hour meeting with Governor Jeb Bush (R-FL). He promised to have his legal team investigate any possibility whereby he could intervene on Terri's behalf.
George Felos, Michael's attorney and an assisted suicide advocate, claimed the Schindlers were "in denial" about his claims that Terri wouldn't have wanted to be kept alive.
Wesley Smith, a leading national spokesman on bioethics issues, says the decision denies Terri's right to live.
"We're talking about a woman who is not terminally ill, who's not hooked up to machines, who is going to live a normal lifespan unless her food and water is taken away," Smith explained.
Smith interviewed neurologists and others for his landmark euthanasia book Forced Exit and said that Terri will die a painful, "terrible" death.
"People can go into seizures. Their lips can crack. They can vomit. The hands mottle and turn cold, because all the water goes in towards the heart."
Pro-life groups say the case of Terri Schiavo is not new.
Burke Balch, the director of medical ethics at National Right to Life, tells LifeNews.com that Terri's situation signifies a clear trend towards denying basic medical care to the severely disabled.
"For about two decades, the law in virtually every state has decreed that 'surrogates'" may authorize denial of treatment to those who cannot speak for themselves," Balch said. "Consequently, vulnerable people with impaired consciousness have routinely been denied life-saving treatment, food and fluids until they die."
"Perhaps not until the publicity about this case have large numbers of Americans recognized how deep and widespread is the commitment to the "quality of life" ethic among doctors, hospitals, and the courts," Balch added.
Related web sites:
Bob and Mary Schindler - http://www.terrisfight.org
Dec. 9 -- After searching 18 days for a missing North Dakota college student, police said Tuesday their operation has become one of recovery, not rescue. NBC’s Kevin Tibbles reports.
Says Sjodin’s blood
found in suspect’s car
GRAND FORKS, N.D., Dec. 9 — Missing college student Dru Sjodin is probably dead, the sheriff said Tuesday in confirming that preliminary DNA tests found Sjodin’s blood in the car of the man suspected of kidnapping her.
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Rodriguez was interviewed by authorities last week, but has since declined to speak with investigators. He has said through his attorney that he is innocent.
“I CERTAINLY HATE to be discouraging to the family or anyone, but it looks to me now that it’s more of a recovery mission than a rescue,” Grand Forks County Sheriff Dan Hill said.
In an interview with The Associated Press, Hill also revealed that searchers found a shoe belonging to the University of North Dakota student near the Red Lake River after she disappeared. Sjodin (pronounced sha DEEN) was last heard from Nov. 22, calling her boyfriend on a cellphone from the parking lot of a Grand Forks mall where she worked at a Victoria’s Secret.
The shoe was identified by a college roommate of Sjodin, 22. It is the only piece of clothing recovered so far, Hill said.
An affidavit unsealed later Tuesday had only one new piece of information: Rodriguez’s account of his whereabouts at the time Sjodin disappeared. According to the affidavit, Rodriguez told police he was watching a movie, “Once Upon a Time in Mexico” at about 7 p.m. that night. Police said the movie wasn’t being shown at any theater near the mall that day.
Alfonso Rodriguez Jr.
The preliminary DNA match would be the most significant break yet in the attempt by authorities to tie convicted rapist Alfonso Rodriguez Jr. to Sjodin’s disappearance. Hill said investigators tested blood from Rodriguez’s car against DNA taken from Sjodin’s toothbrush. Hill described the blood in the car as a small amount.
Hill also confirmed a media report that the interior of Rodriguez’s car and its trunk had been extensively cleaned before his arrest.
Rodriguez, 50, has been charged with Sjodin’s kidnapping. He has said through his attorney that he is innocent.
The Associated Press reported Monday that a knife was discovered in the trunk of Rodriguez’s car, and later reported that a sheath found near Sjodin’s car matched the knife.
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Sjodin’s father said Monday he was dismayed to find that police recovered a knife from Rodriguez’s car. But given his criminal past, he said he was not surprised.
“You know what? It’s probably true,” Allan Sjodin said. “That’s his modus operandi.”
Rodriguez has a history of attempted kidnapping with adult women, and has used a weapon in at least one assault. Rodriguez was released from a Minnesota prison in May after serving 23 years for an attempted abduction in 1979.
Glen Ray Road, Box B
Alderson, West Virginia 24910
Prison pop: 973
Tuesday, December 02, 2003
BY JOHN P. MARTIN
Former Irvington Mayor Sara Bost reported to a federal prison camp in West Virginia yesterday after losing a bid to remain free while she appeals her sentence on corruption charges.
Bost arrived for a year-long stay at the women's minimum-security camp in Alderson, a prison official confirmed.
The town is a mountainside hamlet of barely 1,000 people in the southern part of the state, near the Virginia border. It's also 480 miles from the New Jersey township where Bost served two terms as mayor, before her once-rising political star crashed.
Bost will be assigned to a dormitory, fitted for a uniform and work at a camp job that probably will pay her no more than 40 cents an hour, officials said.
"All inmates are required to work," said Carla Wilson, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Bureau of Prisons. "Work is our most important program."
Alderson sits in the shadow of the Allegheny Mountains, with longer, colder, whiter winters than northern New Jersey. The town has been home to a federal women's prison for at least 60 years. The facility now houses 980 inmates, Wilson said.
Brick buildings line the campus, which, unlike higher-security prisons, has no fences. Inside, prisoners share rooms in their dormitories and can take educational courses or learn trades in the prison workshops.
The prison term was something of a surprise after Bost, 55, pleaded guilty in April to a single count of witness tampering. In return for her plea, prosecutors halted her trial and agreed to drop more serious charges alleging that Bost demanded and took payoffs from township contractors.
Prosecutors also said they would not object if Bost argued for probation at her September sentencing.
But U.S. District Judge Joseph Greenaway stunned lawyers and the defendant when he turned aside Bost's request and instead gave her the stiffest penalty he could for her crime under federal sentencing guidelines.
By ordering her to serve exactly 12 months, Greenaway ensured that Bost won't be released early. Inmates sentenced to a year or less cannot earn time off their term for good behavior. Greenaway also rebuffed a request by Bost last week to remain free on bail while her attorneys prepare to appeal his sentence. He told her to report to prison as scheduled.
The judge also ordered her to perform 150 hours of community service, pay a $2,000 fine and undergo two years of supervision after her release. Bost's attorneys have notified the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that they will challenge the sentence, but have not yet filed their arguments.
Defense attorney Alex Bowman confirmed in a telephone call yesterday that Bost had begun serving her term, then hung up.
Meanwhile, prosecutors said they were pleased that Bost's prison term has begun.
"It's Mrs. Bost's right to appeal her sentence, but she can do that while she begins serving it, too," said Michael Drewniak, spokesman for U.S. Attorney Christopher Christie.
Bost, an accountant, was accused of taking a $1,500 kickback from a paving contractor in 1999 and another $7,000 in bribes earlier from the developers of the sprawling Maple Gardens apartment complex.
The township's former business administrator, David Fuller, became a government witness and tape-recorded his conversations with Bost. FBI agents also videotaped her as she frisked Fuller and asked if he was wearing a wire. Bost denied any wrongdoing.
A former Essex County freeholder, Bost became the latest in a growing list of New Jersey public figures to trade their offices for a prison cell in the last two years.
More than two dozen have been indicted, convicted or sentenced on federal corruption charges during that span.
Former Paterson Mayor Martin Barnes is serving a 37-month term at a prison camp in Alabama. Former Essex County Executive James Treffinger is scheduled to report Jan. 9 to begin his 13-month sentence. Former Hudson County Freeholder Nidia Davila-Colon faces at least three years in prison when she is sentenced Dec. 15.
John P. Martin covers the federal courts. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (973) 622-3405.
Yes, I'll certainly keep these requests in my prayers. I have one to add to your list regarding my sister, Sue Sheppard. First of all, praise that following her chemo treatment the cat scan revealed no sign of cancer in her abdominal area. The huge tumor is gone. However, she has a total of 20 spots on both lungs and one spot on her liver that they are watching. She is now being treated with Doxil, a drug that has been known to damage the heart. Sue called last night to report that they now want to do a repeat mammogram today because the test last week revealed something in her breast.
I visited Sue and Terry a week ago Sunday and heard her sing in the Messiah. How wonderful to again hear the affirmations, For Unto Us a Child is Born, And By His Stripes We Are Healed, I Know That My Redeemer Liveth, and the wonderful Hallelujah Chorus: King of kings, and Lord of lords, and He shall reign forever and ever. Hallelujah!
Please pray for healing for Sue of the cancer and freedom from any dangerous side effects of this new chemo treatment. Nothing is too difficult for God.
North Dakota student missing after terrifying last phone call
GRAND FORKS, N.D. (AP) � Hundreds of volunteers lined up Tuesday to join the search for a University of North Dakota student who has been missing since Saturday. Police believe she may have been abducted.
Dru Sjodin, shown here in an undated family photo, went missing Saturday.
From family friends via Grand Forks Herald, AP
Dru Sjodin, a 22-year-old senior in graphic arts from Pequot Lakes, Minn., was last seen late Saturday afternoon, as she was leaving the Columbia Mall in Grand Forks where she worked.
Her mother, Linda Walker, said her daughter was talking to her boyfriend on her cell phone about 5 p.m. Saturday when her boyfriend heard her say, "Oh, my God." Walker said the phone then went dead.
On Tuesday morning, the volunteers were given identification badges and assigned to teams, then bused to an area east of the city to search for Sjodin.
"I was up all night, because I've just been itching to get out and do this," said Jerrod Arneson, one of the searchers. "You never think something like this would happen here, and when it does, you want to do something."
The search was concentrated on an area around Fisher, Minn., east of Grand Forks, where police had traced a call from Sjodin's cell phone.
Police said Sjodin's red car, a two-door Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme, was found in a Columbia Mall parking lot. Lt. Dennis Eggebraaten said a package that Sjodin apparently bought at the mall was inside the car.
"There was no sign of a struggle that we could determine," he said.
Police were investigating calls to Sjodin at the Victoria's Secret store where she worked. They said she had received at least one call from a man she did not know, who asked for her by name.
Are you able to set up a home computer? If you can, you can help Betty, aChristian woman who came to Gateway a couple of years ago, She lives in Iselin. If you can help with the basics of connecting and plugging in this computer, would you call Dean at 973-399-8378? Thanks
Al Sharpton's Actions Wouldn't Match Words on Abortion
by Paul Nowak
LifeNews.com Staff Writer
November 20, 2003
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- The Rev. Alfred "Al" Sharpton is a contradictory speaker when it comes to life issues. He may be the only candidate for the Democratic nomination that freely admits that he believes life begins at conception, but wants to give women the "right" to an abortion anyway.
In his book "Al on America" Rev. Sharpton writes that he believes "Life begins when a sperm meets the egg, and that only God should decide whether to take a life."
Yet in the very same publication, he declares that, as President, he "Would only appoint justices to the Supreme Court who are for women having the right to choose whether or not they will have an abortion."
On his presidential campaign website, his number one reason for becoming president is to raise awareness for ideals, explicitly including an anti-death penalty policy. But the tenth and final item on his list of reasons for running is to establish the Equal Rights Amendment for Women (ERA).
Pro-life groups, while supporting the equality of women, oppose the ERA because it has been used to mandate taxpayer funding of abortions.
"We've seen the 'personally opposed but' politician go down to defeat time after time," Carol Tobias, political director of National Right to Life told LifeNews.com. "Sharpton will be just one more."
Perhaps it is the Pentecostal minister's lukewarm stance that has kept him at the bottom of the polls. However, he is clearly recognized as pro-abortion by many.
Barbara Streisand, who has donated thousands of dollars to pro-abortion candidates, made a financial vote of support for Rev. Sharpton in May.
And yet, when pro-abortion groups criticized President Bush's nomination of California Supreme Court judge Janice Rogers Brown to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, Rev. Sharpton urged Senate Democrats not to filibuster.
"I don't agree with her politics. I don't agree with some of her background," said Sharpton. "But she should get an up-or-down vote."
Sharpton's campaign declined to provide comment to LifeNews.com.
From our accountant and friend of Gateway, Cathy Horling, a prayer request:
"HI COULD YOU PLEASE REMEMBER PAUL KIM IN YOUR PRAYERS? HE IS THE FRIEND OF MY CO-WORKER'S BROTHER, AND HAS JUST BEEN DIAGNOSED WITH LIVER, TESTICULAR ANDLUNG CANCER. PAUL IS A VERY SWEET PERSON IN HIS THIRTIES WHO ALSO SUFFERS FROM DOWN'S SYNDROME. THE DOCTORS AREN'T OFFERING MUCH HOPE, BUT WE KNOW OUR GOD CAN DO ANYTHING!THANK YOU SO MUCH AND GOD BLESS,CATHY"
Q: What will the signing of the Partial Birth Abortion ban by President Bush mean relative to the whole issue of abortion?
Our answer: Very little, unless believers begin to pray and act righteously within the church.
Perhaps praying that more light that is shown on the process of abortion in general, and specifically in the 2nd and 3rd trimester. This may move some hearts, but without Christians realizing the awefulness of EVERY abortion, we are just trying to bring life to dead bones without the power of Christ.
The Interview That Wasn't
Michael Schiavo got the usual Larry King softballs. Here are the questions King should have asked. by Wesley J. Smith
10/28/2003 9:00:00 AM
MICHAEL SCHIAVO, Terri Schiavo's husband, finally went on national television last night to tell the world his side of the story. Appearing on "Larry King Live," he strived mightily to play the loving husband. Until more than half way through the interview, when King got around to tentatively asking Schiavo whether or not it is true that he has a girlfriend. (King, who must have known the answer, somehow failed to mention that Schiavo has already sired two children with this woman, who he calls his fianc�.)
The loving husband answered, "I'm lucky. I have two great women to love." He then paused to take a swipe at Terri's mom, "My girlfriend has done more for Terri than her own mother." Asked what that might be, Schiavo answered, "She washed her clothes."
THAT EXCHANGE should have opened the door to some very interesting conversation. King could have asked Schiavo if he is raising children with another woman--a matter finally brought up by a caller near the end of the show--why he should continue to have any say over Terri's care, given that the sanctity of the marriage vows he took are no longer operable. King didn't, of course, which is precisely the reason why people in the center of heated public controversies like to go on his show.
There are a number of questions King should have asked Schiavo:
(1) Why did Schiavo tell a medical malpractice jury in 1992 that Terri would live a normal life span? After Terri's collapse, Schiavo sued for medical malpractice. Under civil law, the longer Terri was expected to live, the larger the verdict would probably be. This fact of legal life could explain why Michael presented evidence to the malpractice jury not only that Terri would likely live a normal life span but also that he intended to be a good and loyal husband and care for her for the rest of his life.
(2) Why did Schiavo have a rehabilitation expert testify in front of the malpractice jury to present a detailed plan of therapy for Terri? Schiavo and his lawyer claimed that Terri is incapable of improving physically, but during the 1992 trial, a rehabilitation plan and its anticipated undertaking provided one of the underpinnings for the jury's $1.3 million award. Of that money, Schiavo received $300,000, lawyers' fees were paid, and about $750,000 was put in trust to pay for Terri's rehabilitation.
(3) Given that the jury awarded $750,000 to be used in part for Terri's therapy, why hasn't Schiavo provided any rehabilitation for her since 1991? When asked by King about the issue of rehab, Schiavo described some early efforts to help Terri, such as an experimental surgery in 1990. But he never identified when this rehab took place.
Which is an important point. The only efforts ever undertaken to improve Terri's condition took place in 1990 and 1991. They had ceased by the time of the malpractice trial in 1992 because her insurance coverage had run out. Indeed, the pressing need to restart therapy was an urgent part of the malpractice case. It could have--and should have--paid to restart the rehabilitation that had been abandoned due to lack of funds.
Once Terri's $750,000 was in the bank, however, Schiavo would not approve a single cent of it to be spent on rehabilitation. Not only that, but once the money was in the bank, Schiavo ordered a "do not resuscitate" order placed on Terri's chart so that if she had a cardiac event, the doctors would not attempt to save her. And within a few months of the money being deposited, Schiavo also refused to permit curative treatments, such as antibiotics for infections. If Terri had died during the early or mid-1990s, as Schiavo's orders were designed, he would have inherited somewhere around $700,000.
The issue of Terri's money did come up several times during last night's interview. Schiavo assured King he isn't in it for the money because there is only about $50,000 left in Terri's estate.
(4) Is it true that Terri's money has paid for attorneys to make her dead, instead of therapists to make her better? The answer is, unquestionably, yes. According to court records, George Felos, the dutiful "right to die" attorney who sat at Schiavo's side on King's show, has been paid over $350,000 from Terri's trust fund. Another of Schiavo's attorneys, Debra Bushnell, has received about $90,000. These two lawyers alone have received more than half of Terri's entire trust.
According to court records, when Schiavo began his quest to pull Terri's feeding tube in 1998, she had more than $700,000 in the bank. This was primarily because Schiavo generally refused to authorize payments for any nursing home services on Terri's behalf beyond the basics of room and board. Thus, only about $50,000 was paid on her behalf in the five years following the jury verdict. Since 1998, about $650,000 (not taking into account any earnings from the fund) has gone out--not for therapy, but primarily for lawyers.
And yet on "Larry King" Schiavo went so far as to suggest that Bob Schindler, Terri's father, is fighting to save Terri's life because he wants her money.
(5) So how could Terri's father make any money off the case? Schiavo's story is that once Schindler became Terri's guardian, he would get her a divorce, and then he would stop her food and fluids. The alleged point of such a scheme being that as next of kin, the Schindlers would inherit their daughter's money.
This sounds like a mighty stretch, particularly given that Bob Schindler has spent every nickel he has--including his entire retirement fund--desperately trying to save his daughter's life. If Bob Schindler is a venal man, he has a funny way of showing it.
Schiavo told King that his falling out with his father-in-law occurred in February 1993, when Schindler demanded a share of the proceeds in Terri's trust fund. But Schindler and his wife Mary tell a different story. They claim that the argument was over their insistence that the long-suspended rehabilitation recommence, since there was finally money available to pay for it. They contend that the breach of relationship occurred because Schiavo refused. The behavior of both parties since seems much more consistent with this story than with Schiavo's version of events.
Too bad Larry King didn't ask.
Wesley J. Smith is a senior fellow at the Discovery Institute and an attorney and consultant for the International Task Force on Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide. He is the author of Forced Exit: The Slippery Slope from Assisted Suicide to Legalized Murder."
President Bush Says Restoring Terri's Feeding Tube Was Right Decision
by Steven Ertelt
October 28, 2003
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- Making his first public comments on the situation of Terri Schiavo, President George W. Bush said he agreed with his brother's decision to allow doctors to reinsert the feeding tube that is allowing Terri to remain alive.
"Yes, I believe my brother made the right decision,'' President Bush said in response to a reporter's question at a news conference Tuesday morning.
Pro-life groups were pleased by Bush's comments.
"I am proud to live in a country where the President has the integrity to make the time speak out on behalf of one human being who is being discriminated against because of her disabilities," Lori Hougens told LifeNews.com.
Hougens, who lobbies Congress on medical ethics issues, added, "This will help in the fight to protect the rights and dignity of all people with disabilities in our country."
Meanwhile, after a cabinet meeting Tuesday afternoon, Gov. Jeb Bush defended his actions.
"It makes all the sense in the world to me, something where there's medical disputes, to try at least," Gov. Bush said.
"It's very hard for me to be a part of something or sit by idly and allow someone to be starved to death," Bush said. He added that Terri should be evaluated to see if she can swallow food or water on her own.
President Bush's comments come a day after Michael Schiavo's attorneys filed suit in an attempt to overturn Governor Bush's executive order preventing Terri's death.
Also on Monday, Michael and Terri's parents made their cases on national television. Michael blasted Terri's parents and pro-life advocates.
Michael Schiavo Blasts Terri's Parents, Pro-Life Advocates
by Steven Ertelt
October 27, 2003
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- Terri Schiavo's husband and parents did battle on competitive television news networks last night.
Michael Schiavo tore into Terri's parents with a barrage of attacks and false claims while Bob and Mary Schindler say they have 15 doctors who believe there is hope for Terri should she ever receive proper medical and rehabilitative care.
Michael again claimed that Terri would not have wanted to stay alive. He bases the claim on a relevation he had years after Terri's collapse -- that she remarked to him while watching television that she wouldn't want extraordinary measures used to keep her alive.
"I don't want anything like that. I don't want any tubes," Michael claims Terri told him.
"This is Terri's wish,'' he said of ending Terri's life. "And I am going to follow that if this is the last thing I can do for Terri. I love my wife and I'm going to follow her wishes and nothing's going to stop me."
Pat Anderson, an attorney for the Schindlers, counters that Michael never knew Terri's wishes for such a circumstance.
"It's hard to know what to believe with him because he says whatever the occasion demands or what is in his financial interests," Anderson said.
Though Michael has been tagged with the desire to obtain what's left of a 1993 medical malpractice award to live on with his girlfriend and their children, he claims Terri's parents want the money for themselves.
"He's always wanted the money,'' Schiavo said of Bob Schindler, Terri's father. "He wants the money. He wants the control.''
However, Bob Schindler has repeatedly said he will make sure Michael receives any money leftover that was intended for Terri's treatment as long as Michael would allow the Schindlers guardianship of Terri so they could take care of her.
Michael claimed he had taken sufficient care of Terri and blamed pro-life groups for motivating the Schindlers to continue the legal battle.
"Now, they (his in-laws) are being fed all this information by those right-to-life activists who are feeding their little flame,'' he said.
"There's no money, there's no insurance, there's about $50,000 left in her estate," Michael said. "I will not receive a penny from this."
Michael says most of the money was spent on Terri's care while the Schindlers say more money is left and contend what has been used went to pay legal bills.
He also said videotapes made by the Schindlers and posted on their web site were snippets showing some response, but that they were parts of longer videos showing no response from Terri.
Michael also said pro-life activists are misleading the Schindlers into thinking Terri is responding more so than a patient in a PVS state normally would.
Like the epic legal battle that has gone on for years to determine whether Terri will be able to live, it was fitting that both sides appeared on news networks that are battling it out to capture the largest viewer share.
Michael appeared on CNN, founded by abortion advocate Ted Turner and long known for its bias on life issues.
Meanwhile, Bob and Mary Schindler appeared on the Fox News Channel, where some of the show's hosts are pro-life and others are generally regarded as fair and balanced on pro-life topics.
Michael Schiavo is now a nurse in a hospital emergency room, a career he says he chose in part because of his wife's situation.
Patrick Poole calls Operation Rescue founder a cheat
�But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.� - 1Timothy 5:8 (ESV)
�Giving more money to Randall Terry is like giving booze to an alcoholic,� - Flip Benham, Executive Director, Operation Save America
There are few things I hate in this life more than hypocrisy, especially my own. That�s why I was very hesitant to write this article. We are all broken people in need of God�s redeeming grace. Even the most saintly of men and women are corrupted by sin. We should treat others as we expect to be treated, and certainly having our most private of sins trotted out for the world to see is nothing that any of us want to endure. Jesus lays out procedures for confronting a Christian trapped in their sin (Matthew 18: 15-17), which are designed to protect their name and reputation, and giving them opportunity to repent of their sins.
But when it comes to Christ�s Church and those claiming leadership therein, there are higher standards that have to be followed. Accusations against leaders, elected and self-proclaimed, cannot be based on just one source: two or three witnesses are needed. (1 Timothy 5:19) But along with this higher threshold of evidence comes greater responsibility and scrutiny. Christians have an obligation to publicly confront leaders engaged in heinous sins (1 Timothy 5:20), especially when they have shown themselves to be violently opposed to repentance and godly discipline.
Sadly, what I have to say now falls into this latter category.
In the midst of the ongoing story surrounding Terry Schiavo in Florida in recent weeks (a severely handicapped woman whose family is fighting the efforts of her husband to get the legal permission to starve her to death), Randall Terry, former leader of Operation Rescue and a self-promoting activist, has reappeared on the public scene making mass email solicitations asking for money to help him fight for Mrs. Schiavo�s life. The cause is very noble, and at the time of this writing, it seems that Gov. Jeb Bush and the Florida Legislature have moved political heaven and earth to invest Gov. Bush with the power to intervene and spare this helpless woman from a slow, agonizing death.
But the messenger, Randall Terry, his personal misconduct and the questionable financial dealings associated with his fund-raising appeals demand some greater public scrutiny.
Randall has done a masterful job in recent years of keeping his personal and financial secrets from the Christian community, while mounting an ongoing defamation campaign against anyone that dared raise objections to his illegal and un-Christian activities.
For the sake of the Body of Christ, someone has to make the unequivocal call for the Christian community to stop funding Randall Terry and his continued open rebellion against God. There have been countless opportunities for others more morally and spiritually qualified than I to make this call, but most of those that have been made aware of these mounting charges and facts have failed in their Christian obligation to do so. Because there are few people lining up to speak out about his well-documented moral failings and financial fraud, and in light of current circumstances, I feel compelled to act.1
Over the past few years (after abandoning his pro-life work), Randall Terry has made a comfortable living begging for money for � Randall Terry.
* In 1998, according to The Center for Responsive Politics, Randall raised more than $1.2 million from the Christian community to run in a New York congressional race where he barely received 7 percent of the vote, yet almost outspent the Democrat incumbent and the Republican challenger combined.
* After his unsuccessful congressional run, he solicited donations from the Christian community to establish a �Randall Terry Sabbatical Fund� to recover from his political campaign. According to The New York Times, Randall used his Sabbatical period and the money he received to move to Nevada to get a quickie divorce from his wife of 19 years, Cindy Terry; and to quickly remarry to his former congressional campaign secretary, Andrea Kollmorgan, 16 years his junior. He also raised enough money to move with his new wife to Nashville, where they rented out expensive recording studios to produce CDs of his own music.
* In 2000, Randall began raising money for a New York U.S. Senate Race, spending $32,000 of contributor�s money for a race he eventually withdrew from.
* Earlier this year, Randall sent out hundreds of thousands of emails and direct mail appeals carrying the endorsement of such pro-life heavyweights, such as Ambassador Alan Keyes and U.S. Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX), carrying pictures of Randall with the Pope, and emblazoned with the headline, �Operation Rescue Founder Randall Terry Stripped Of Everything By Abortion Movement.� Yet again, he asked the Christian community for money to help purchase a new home, because �after over a decade of lawsuits against him because of his prolife work, he recently (fall 2002) lost everything to pro-abortion forces.� From information gathered from my investigation, it is clear that Randall raised hundreds of thousands of dollars from this appeal alone. The appeal was so successful, that one of his associates, Gary McCullough, has adapted the pitch and is using it to raise funds for himself.
* Now, Randall Terry is using the tragic Schiavo saga to relaunch his pro-life career by sending out thousands of solicitations in recent days begging once more for money �to continue the fight�.
Here�s the information you won�t find in Randall Terry�s fund raising mailings:
* Randall Terry has steadfastly refused to repent of his sin of adultery,2 prompting his former church (Landmark Church of Binghamton, NY, where he served as an elder) to publicly censure Randall for abandoning his wife and family to take up with his present wife. To avoid answering any of their charges and to steer clear of any consequences from the church�s disciplinary actions, Randall moved his church membership to another church and denomination. The letter of censure is posted online and was covered at the time by the The Washington Post.
* According to evidence gathered during the course of the several church and media investigations, there were at least two identifiable women, not including his present wife, with whom Randall Terry had had �intimate contact� while he was still married to his first wife. To this day, Randall and his lackeys state in pure Clintonesque fashion that he has �only had sex with his wife.� In his defense, however, no one has accused him of �having sex with that woman, Ms. Lewinsky�, nor has Randall issued any statement questioning the definition of �is�.
* Earlier this year, Randall was investigated by the Tennessee Department of Children�s Services for abandoning one of his adopted daughters for weeks at a time, leaving her with another family in the Nashville area while he, his wife and newborn son, would travel to speaking engagements promoting his return to Christian leadership.
* According to a WORLD Magazine report published in June, Randall Terry was chastised by a family court judge for not meeting his child support obligations to his first wife, Cindy, for their daughter, Faith, while simultaneously raising money to fight for the �American Family.�
* In New York State Court documents related to that matter reported by WORLD, Randall Terry committed perjury by telling the court: �The past two years have been difficult financially for me.... I am three months behind in my rent, in addition to my numerous other debts. Since June, in order to pay necessities, we have been selling many items....� Yet days after making this claim in court, Randall put $20,000 down on a home in Florida for his new family.
* Randall has publicly taken credit for his role in the U.S. Supreme Court case, NOW v. Scheidler, decided earlier this year, which gave pro-life forces a victory when the Court ruled that federal authorities could not use racketeering statutes to go after pro-life leaders. Randall�s website, as of October 21, 2003, listed a press release entitled, �Randall wins his case before the Supreme Court�. But the fact is that Randall abandoned his co-defendants and settled with pro-abortion forces in January 1998, months before the case even came to trial. Randall�s capitulation encouraged the pro-abortion movement to pursue the remaining defendants even more vigorously, subjecting them to further legal harassment and financial claims against them. In an interview I conducted in January with Joe Scheidler (the lead defendant in the case), he informed me that Operation Rescue and Randall Terry wouldn�t pay for any legal expenses associated with the case and the appeals, despite the fact that he continued to proclaim his role in the case and raised money to �recoup his losses.� That, of course, did not prevent him from showing up on the day of the Supreme Court hearing to make the media rounds on the courthouse steps.
* While raising funds claiming that he had been deprived of a home by the �pro-abortion movement,� Randall was having a new $432,000 Atlantic Ocean beachfront home built in an exclusive gated community in South Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida. Randall had purchased the property (with money he had raised from donors) more than eight months before sending out the fliers claiming he was homeless. In fact, Randall admitted to WORLD Magazine that the fundraising letters were intended as a means for him to be able to pay cash for the house by the time the construction was complete. He closed on the house earlier this year and now resides there.
* Another bone of contention is Randall�s claims that pro-abortion forces stripped him of everything he owned, down to his frequent flyer miles. But in fact, Randall declared Chapter 7 bankruptcy to avoid the financial impact of the court judgments against him and to escape from the 38 separate creditors (many credit card companies) that he had taken money from (as an aside, the Bible calls this theft). The pro-abortion movement then turned their attention to his ex-wife, Cindy. By declaring bankruptcy, Randall left her holding the bag. Cindy Terry ended up having to sell her home to cover her ex-husband�s bankruptcy debts, though he has failed thus far to reciprocate: none of the money that he has raised over the past year to �restore� himself to financial health has been passed on to help Cindy and his daughter, Faith, recover the losses they incurred as a result of his bankruptcy.
* In the email solicitations sent out earlier this week and on the online contribution webpage linked in the email there is no mention that the contributions he asks for are not tax-deductible, but rather, go straight into his pocket. The post office box address he used in these email solicitations is exactly the same he used earlier this year for the �Terry Family Trust�, a for-profit corporation that has his family as the sole beneficiaries. As a for-profit, the organization does not have to file the required IRS Form 990 that gives public disclosure for receipts, assets and disbursements from the donations the organization receives, meaning that there is no financial accountability or transparency for all the money Randall has recently received from the Christian community. During my investigation earlier this year, Randall and his attorneys refused my repeated requests for any information about the financial status, corporate officers, oversight and legal representation of the organization. To this day, despite speaking with numerous officials with the IRS, the Tennessee and Florida Secretaries of State and the Texas Attorney General�s office, I have been unable to locate the incorporation state and status for the �Terry Family Trust.�
* According to those federal and state officials, Randall is violating numerous charitable solicitation laws by not clearly stating whether contributions are tax-deductible or not. This is a problem that donors encountered earlier this year who gave to build Randall�s $432,000 home and have funded his recent activities. Until both Lynn Vincent of WORLD Magazine and I confronted him that his website did not bear the necessary disclosures, there was only one mention buried in his website (on the �Contacts� page) that contributions were not tax-deductible. There was no hint in the emails or direct mail pieces he sent, or on the contributions pages on his website of the for-profit tax status of the �Terry Family Trust.� Randall claimed that it was �an oversight,� an odd claim for a man that has raised millions of dollars in contributions over the past twenty years for not-for-profit organizations and political campaigns. And yet now just a few months later, he is once again sending out solicitations that make no mention of the tax status of the organization he is raising money for, or what the money will be used for. His recent email appeals seem to indicate that the money will not be given to the Schiavo family that he claims to be fighting for, but to cover his own �personal expenses� associated with his attendant self-promotion campaign.
Sadly, there is much more that could be mentioned, but this is sufficient to demonstrate that even if Randall�s past efforts for the cause of Christ were considered, he has completely disqualified himself from any leadership position in the Christian community through his unwillingness to be held accountable for his adultery, theft, lies, deceptions, misrepresentations, perjury, failing to provide for his first wife and children, and evasion of church discipline.
Even though she had never spoken publicly about their divorce or his non-payment of child support, Cindy Terry spoke with WORLD Magazine, pleading for the Christian community to stop supporting Randall. "I don't want to see any more donors misled,� she said.
Even Randall�s previous statements are rising up to condemn him. For instance, observe this indictment contained in his 1996 book, The Judgment of God:
We have become a sex-crazed society. Women are viewed as sex toys to be used and discarded by vile, pathetic males (I shall not call them men); family are destroyed as a father vents his mid-life crisis by abandoning his wife for a younger, prettier model.�
His actions related to his first marriage fit this denunciation to the letter.
Randall�s ongoing behavior is just as wicked and depraved as the actions of Terry Schiavo�s husband, who he has been publicly condemning in recent weeks.
But equally as pernicious as Randall�s public sins are the actions of those pro-life leaders that continue to support him and continue to give him credibility.
Most notable is Alan Keyes. I had several conversations with Ambassador Keyes� senior staff earlier this year, and even after they were presented with extensive evidence of Randall�s fraudulent fundraising campaigns, they refused to withdraw their support; and all future mailings on Randall�s behalf continued to be sent out under Keyes� signature and on his letterhead.
At the time that WORLD Magazine and I were conducting our respective investigations, Randall convinced John Whitehead of the Rutherford Institute to do a preemptive strike against those of us that were asking the hard questions before we could file our reports, claiming that we were violating the Ninth Commandment by bearing false witness against him. But for my part, I could never get him on the record to respond to the charges and the evidence I had compiled. He steadfastly refused to give his version of events! Even in the face of documented evidence, all he did was follow the Clintonian policy of deny, deny, deny, without explaining how his version of events could ever fit with the evidence that we had in our possession.
Even after Randall lawyered up and had his attorney send me threatening cease-and-desist letters, he had his oldest son, Jameel; his �pastor,� Fr. Terry Gensemer; and noted Christian media figure, Rich Buhler; contact me to float his side of the story without having to face the difficult questions and facts. But when all three of these individuals were pressed with these difficult questions, particularly about the fraudulent fundraising mailings that (in the cases of Fr. Gensemer and Rich Buhler) bore their name, they couldn�t or wouldn�t respond to my questions as to how Randall could simultaneously claim that he was homeless while he was building his $432,000 beachfront home, or why he was pleading poverty to evade his court-ordered child support. Both Gensemer and Buhler continued to allow their names to be used in Randall�s solicitations even after they had been confronted with the fraudulent claims contained in the mailings.
Unfortunately, Randall has gathered a dedicated cadre of defenders to conceal his fraud and his adultery. He is regaining credibility in Christian circles, and money flows like a proverbial river to his for-profit organization as a result of the cover these men and women give him. And despite the national press coverage he has received for his less-than-Christian behavior, few Christians have heard about these many well-documented stories about his personal misconduct and financial fraud.
But at least a few brave souls have spoken out publicly about Randall�s transgressions. Included in this small group are Pat Mahoney, a former Operation Rescue colleague, and Flip Benham, who continues to operate the renamed organization, Operation Save America. When mailboxes were stuffed with Randall�s appeals earlier this year, Benham issued a public statement, which concludes:
Randall Terry's brilliant mind has found a way to justify everything that his
wicked heart conceives. It is too bad! He does not know himself well enough yet. He cannot fathom that he has violated Scripture, broken faith with the wife of his youth, broken faith with those he led into battle, broken faith with the voiceless children he was called to defend, and broken faith with God Himself. He has robbed Almighty God of the glory He could have received as a result of the multitudinous gifts God deposited in Randall's very person. Instead of using his gifts to feed our Lord's lambs, Randall Terry is using God's gifts to fleece them.
It is clearly time for the Body of Christ to do what his defenders have failed to do. Randall Terry has caused a public scandal to be attached to the name of Christ by his rampant misconduct, and churches and Christians of all stripes should begin to sound the warning about this carnival barker turned fundraiser. Randall has grown adept at fleecing Christ�s flock by making fraudulent appeals, and concerned Christians should beware.
For his sake, that he might be brought to repentance and restoration, and for the sake and cause of Christ, Randall Terry needs his financial feeding tube removed. Having taken millions of dollars over the years to fund his self-serving, yet largely unsuccessful, efforts, he has long since overdrawn on what little credibility he built years ago during his work with Operation Rescue. As his actions have clearly demonstrated, he is concerned with no one but himself, and continuing to finance his activities is harmful to his soul and to the causes that contributors want to support.
I would urge you to pray for the soul of Randall Terry. I would also covet your prayers as well, knowing full well his media and legal machine will be directed my way almost immediately. Nonetheless, judgment needs to begin at the House of God.
Patrick S. Poole is an author, public policy expert and freelance journalist. He is a regular contributor to WorldNetDaily, and his public policy work has been covered by the New York Times, ABC News, National Post (Canada), and WIRED Magazine. An article he authored was published in eight languages by the largest new magazine in Europe, La Monde Diplomatique. He resides alterately in Franklin, TN and Scottsdale, AZ.
1. Before I go any further, I need to let my readers know that I have personally spoken to Randall Terry and his �church authorities� about these matters when I was conducting an investigation of Randall for two publications, one online and one print, earlier this year. All of the parties involved refused to answer any of substantive questions about Randall�s activities. The final communication I received on this matter was an email from Randall�s attorney, Michael Hirsh of Hirsh & Hueser, LLC of Atlanta threatening to sue me, a clear violation of 1 Corinthians 6: 1-11, if I released any of the information contained in this article � all of which is already in the public domain.
2. �And I say to you: whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery� (Mt. 19:9).
Schiavo lawyers challenge 'Terri's Law'
By Deborah Sharp, USA TODAY
A hastily passed law that gave Florida Gov. Jeb Bush the power to reconnect Terri Schiavo's feeding tube is unconstitutional and should be struck down, attorneys for her husband argued in court papers filed Wednesday.
The challenge to what state legislators dubbed "Terri's Law" is the latest skirmish in a long battle between Schiavo's husband and her parents over ending the life of the 39-year-old woman. She has been in a coma-like state for 13 years.
Schiavo's feeding tube was removed Oct. 15, based on court orders affirming the right of her husband, Michael, to carry out what he says were her wishes. It was reinserted Oct. 21 after the state Legislature's unprecedented vote.
"I never imagined the powers-that-be in Florida would take such extraordinary measures to intervene in a private family matter, without even remotely considering what Terri would have wanted," Michael Schiavo said in a statement.
Attorneys for Gov. Bush have until Thursday to file a response.
The main arguments in Wednesday's brief are that Bush's action violated Terri Schiavo's constitutional right to privacy and the separation between courts and other governmental branches.
Terri Schiavo's parents, Bob and Mary Schindler, have become accustomed to legal ups and downs. "The stress is always there," said Pat Anderson, their attorney. "They're always acutely aware that Terri is vulnerable."
A new CNN/USA TODAY/Gallup Poll shows that 80% of Americans believe a spouse should be allowed to decide whether to end the life of a person in a persistent vegetative state. Seventeen percent of the 1,006 adults surveyed disagreed, and 3% said they had no opinion. Poll results were released Monday.
"Your spouse is the person you're closest to. That's the person most intimately aware of what your feelings would be," said poll respondent Linda Paterson, 50, of Santa Rosa, Calif.
The poll results don't surprise ethicists. "For most Americans, there are things worse than death. And that's to find yourself trapped in bed in limbo, kept alive by technology from which there's no escape," said Arthur Caplan, head of the University of Pennsylvania's Center for Bioethics.
However, some say the Schiavo case is exceptional because of allegations by Terri Schiavo's parents that her husband is acting in his own self-interest.
The poll results might be different if the generally worded poll question referred specifically to the Schiavo case, said John Kilner, head of the Christian-based Center for Bioethics and Human Dignity in suburban Chicago.
"The percentages would flip to the exact opposite if you asked, 'Should the spouse be able to do it in all cases, or should there be a safeguard when there is a question about whether the spouse is acting in the patient's best interest?' "
The Oct. 24-26 telephone poll has a margin of error of +/-3 percentage points.
Michael Schiavo's Attorneys File Motion to Overturn Bush Decision Saving Terri
by Steven Ertelt
October 27, 2003
Pinellas Park, FL (LifeNews.com) -- Attorneys for Michael Schiavo, now including the support of the ACLU, filed briefs on Monday seeking to overturn Gov. Jeb Bush's (R-FL) executive order authorizing doctors to reinsert the feeding tube that allows Terri Schiavo to live.
In challenging "Terri's Law," Michael's attorneys believe it is unconstitutional and violates what Michael claims is Terri's desire against being kept alive.
Florida Attorney General Charlie Crist is expected to file a response by Friday.
In 1998, years after questionable circumstances put Terri in her disabled state and following a lawsuit that awarded Michael $700,000 for Terri's care and rehabilitation, Michael claimed to have recalled a conversation where Terri told him she wouldn't want extra measures to be used to keep her alive.
An ensuing court battle has followed that culminated in legislation passed by the Florida legislature allowing Governor Bush to prevent Michael from ending Terri's life.
In other developments, Terri's parents have filed a motion against the appointment of Dr. Jay Wolfson, a professor of health and law at Florida-based Stetson University, as a new guardian for Terri. They say he should not be appointed because he has already made his opinion in the case known and can't be impartial.
Though he has very rarely spoken to the media during the lengthy lawsuit, Michael will appear on CNN's "Larry King Live" Monday night at 9 p.m. EST.
ACLU joins husband in battle to stop feeding of brain-damaged woman
By Megan O'Matz and Diane Lade
Posted October 24 2003
The American Civil Liberties Union said Thursday that it will aid Michael Schiavo in his fight against Gov. Jeb Bush and the Florida Legislature, which earlier this week took the remarkable step of passing a law to prevent the Pinellas County man from disconnecting his brain-injured wife from a feeding tube.
For months, the ACLU resisted meddling in the dispute that has pitted a husband against his in-laws, believing that the courts were following the long-held legal right of an individual to refuse extraordinary medical measures, even if it hastens their death.
The intervention of the governor, however, altered the landscape, said Howard Simon, the organization's Florida director. Several other significant advocacy groups on the sidelines, such as the AARP, say they, too, are now looking at the issue.
The entry of the ACLU and possibly other influential players into the life-and-death drama playing out in Tallahassee and the Tampa area underscores the growing dimensions of the coming court battle over whether the state's top leaders acted unconstitutionally in sidestepping the courts in the high-profile right-to-die case.
By substituting his judgment for the judgment of the courts, the governor "set aside the role of the whole judicial system," Simon said, warning that a precedent has been set for Bush and legislators to write laws gutting any court decision they don't like.
Pamela Hennessy, a spokeswoman for the parents of the impaired woman, Terri Schiavo, said she was "outraged" at the intervention of the ACLU, the nation's largest defender of individual rights. Schiavo's parents, Mary and Bob Schindler, are trying to keep their daughter alive.
"I've been contacting the ACLU since the beginning of my involvement in this case to have them speak out against what's going on with Terri," Hennessy said. "It's going on against her will. She's had her religious freedoms stripped from her. She's had her civil liberties stripped from her. And they're defending the husband?"
Leaders of theAARP, the huge lobbying group that claims 2.6 million Floridians age 50 and older as members, are discussing whether to weigh in on the issue, said state Director Bentley Lipscomb.
The organization remained silent several years ago as the state's Supreme Court debated whether terminally ill, mentally competent patients should be allowed to end their lives with their doctor's assistance.
"Our members tell us that [medical self-determination] is a very important issue to them," Lipscomb said. "They're telling us they are very disturbed to think they could sign a living will or do not resuscitate order and have it overridden by the Legislature."
During a special session, the Legislature briskly passed a law Tuesday, crafted to apply only to Schiavo, 39, enabling the governor to order her feeding tube reconnected so that she may not die. It had been removed on Oct. 15 by court order. In response to the governor's order, Schiavo began receiving nourishment again Wednesday at Morton Plant Hospital in Clearwater.
Schiavo's parents visited her Thursday in a Pinellas Park hospice where she was transferred after the tube was reinstated. The family had been concerned that the days without food and water may have damaged her kidneys and other organs, but said she appeared to be doing well.
In a news conference Thursday, Michael Schiavo's attorney, George Felos, said Terri Schiavo was "generally stable," with good color and complexion. Her kidneys appeared to be working.
Her husband is committed to continuing the legal fight, taking it to the state Supreme Court if necessary, Michael Schiavo's other attorney, Deborah Bushnell said.
"The action of the Legislature and the governor has actually firmed his resolve. He's upset about what happened," Bushnell said. "It has raised this situation from one of personal importance to one of statewide and national importance. If this law is allowed to stand, it creates an incredible bad precedent. It potentially paralyzes the judicial system."
Doctors say Terri Schiavo has been in a "persistent vegetative state" since 1990, when an undetected potassium imbalance stopped her heart briefly. Her parents, believing there's a chance she can recover, mounted a fierce legal campaign to keep her alive. Her husband, seeing no hope, has argued that she would never want to live in a vegetative condition. The courts have sided with Michael Schiavo consistently.
His legal team faces a Monday deadline to submit briefs on their constitutional challenge before the Pinellas-Pasco Circuit Court.
Meanwhile, some members of the medical profession on Thursday expressed concern that the Legislature's intervention may cause doctors to disregard the wishes of dying patients.
"We are afraid of lawyers all the time," said Dr. Lofty L. Basta, a retired Clearwater cardiologist and founder of Project Grace, a non-profit group devoted to educating people about end-of-life planning. "We practice defensive medicine. We do things that we know are wrong to protect our behinds. So this ruling from the legislators makes us very leery to carry out any order for dying patients."
Terri Schiavo's doctor, Victor Gambone, faxed a letter to Morton Plant Hospital this week, shortly after the passage of what has become known as Terri's Law, saying he was resigning as her primary care physician, Bushnell said.
Michael Schiavo's lawyers, about the same time, sent a letter to area hospitals warning that, although the new law promised shelter from civil liability, the prospect that the measure is unconstitutional opened doctors up to a future lawsuit if they dared to reinsert the feeding tube.
Dr. Juergen Bludau, medical director of Morse Geriatric Center in West Palm Beach, said the threats of lawsuits could scare away caring physicians.
"I can understand how doctors would pull back and say: `This is not what we're here for.'"
Members of the Florida Bar Association's elder law section were planning an emergency telephone conference within the next few days to discuss whether they should get involved in the upcoming constitutional challenge, said section President Stephanie Schneider.
"We wonder if we'll see a domino effect," said Schneider, a Broward County elderlaw attorney. "If a party doesn't like what a court does, they'll say, `Let's just go to the governor's office.' "
Members of End of Life Choices, the pro assisted death group formerly known as the Hemlock Society, expressed surprise that a debate has resurfaced over whether vegetative or terminally ill patients should be tube-fed against their own or families' wishes. The last landmark Florida cases on the issue were 13 years ago.
"We thought we were done with forced sustenance," said Choices Chief Executive Officer David Brand. "This opens a whole can of worms that places people's wishes about their end of life care in jeopardy."
Orlando Sentinel reporter Sean Mussenden and Sun-Sentinel researcher Barbara Hijek contributed to this report.
Megan O'Matz can be reached at email@example.com or 954- 356-4518.
Michael Schiavo Continues Legal Battle, Terri Improving
by Steven Ertelt
October 23, 2003
Clearwater, FL (LifeNews.com) -- Michael Schiavo vows to continue fighting Terri's family -- this time over legislation passed that gave Governor Jeb Bush (R-FL) the authority to require doctors to reinsert the feeding tube that was allowing Terri Schiavo to live.
George Felos, the assisted suicide advocate who is Michael's lead attorney, will go to court on Monday to challenge the constitutionality of Bush's authority. Felos claims the decision should rest with Michael, who obtained a local judge's permission to end Terri's life.
Felos claims Michael is benefiting from an outpouring of public support, though rallies and letterwriting campaigns have been overwhelmingly in Terri's favor.
"He's a fighter, and he's feeling in some ways encouraged," Felos said.
Meanwhile, Terri Schiavo's parents and brother visited her for more than an hour at Woodside hospice.
"Terry is great, absolutely great. She has her color back. She's tired, but she just looks wonderful," said her father, Bob Schindler. "I think she's out of harm's way."
The night before, Terri appeared drawn and her eyes were rimmed with red, Schindler said, but she was beginning to look better Thursday.
Doctors reinserted the feeding tube at Morton Plant Hospital in Clearwater on Wednesday and then Terri was secretively transported to the hospice where she has been a patient for years, only minute before Terri's family was scheduled to visit her.
Pat Anderson, attorney for Terri's family, says the action was designed to weaken Terri before she was medically ready to be moved from the hospital.
by Steven Ertelt
October 22, 2003
Clearwater, FL (LifeNews.com) -- Late Wednesday, Terri's family became alarmed when Michael Schiavo moved her to an undisclosed location. Eventually, Terri's family learned she had been moved back to the hospice in Pinellas Park where she had been staying prior to her hospitalization for rehydration and insertion of her feeding tube.
In an email to LifeNews.com, Pamela Hennessy, a spokeswoman for Bob and Mary Schindler, said Michael moved Terri only minutes before they were scheduled to visit her at the hospital.
"I have no idea where she is," Terri's brother Bob said minutes after Schiavo was taken by ambulance from the hospital. "I just got a call an hour ago from my mom saying, 'Get to the hospital. They're going to let us visit Terri.' Now we don't know where she is."
The action came on the same day after Michael prevented Terri's family from visiting her for 24 hours.
"The family has not yet been permitted to see their daughter/sister, nor have they had any information disclosed to them that would assure them that Terri is healthy enough to be taken from a hospital to another location," Hennessy added.
Pat Anderson, the family's attorney, said she believes the multiple transfers are being done in an attempt to weaken or kill Terri.
"It's a shell game," Anderson said. "It's a calculated attempt to debilitate her physically, but she has an iron will to live, so don't count her out."
Eventually, Michael relented and allowed the family to see Terri. She continues to be in a very tenuous medical condition.
Anderson confirmed that Terri's feeding tube has been reinserted.
Terri looked gaunt and her eyes were bloodshot red, Anderson said, adding, "I think what we're looking at is the price of moving her.
Anderson again asked Michael to remove himself as Terri's guardian. "He's already moved on with his life," she said. "Just leave her alone."
Meanwhile, a judge appointed a special guardian for Terri, though it remains unclear how broad the guardian's powers will be and how they effect Michael's status as guardian -- especially in light of his transferring Terri to a secret location.
Anderson wants the special guardian to have significant powers, including authorizing rehabilitative treatments and determining who can visit Terri.
Doctors began giving fluids to Terri on Tuesday night in preparation for reinserting her feeding tube. The actions came at the request of Governor Jeb Bush, who was granted power to issue an executive order stopping the starvation or dehydration deaths of any patients in Florida, such as Terri Schiavo.
Family forbidden from seeing woman after Gov. Bush order
CLEARWATER, Fla. (AP) � The family of a disabled woman now under treatment by orders of Gov. Jeb Bush is barred from seeing her because her husband won't allow it, the family's attorney said Tuesday.
Attorneys for Terri's parents Bob, pictured, and Mary Schindler said Terri's brother was turned away Tuesday night when he tried to see his sister.
By David Kadlubowski, AP file
Michael Schiavo is Terri Schiavo's official guardian, and can designate who is allowed to see his wife. She had gone without food and water for six days under a court order that allowed her husband to remove the feeding tube that kept her alive for more than a decade.
Fla. Family Can't Visit Disabled Woman By MITCH STACY, Associated Press Writer
CLEARWATER, Fla. - The family of a disabled woman now under treatment by orders of Gov. Jeb Bush is barred from seeing her because her husband won't allow it, the family's attorney said Tuesday.
Michael Schiavo is Terri Schiavo's official guardian, and can designate who is allowed to see his wife. She had gone without food and water for six days under a court order that allowed her husband to remove the feeding tube that kept her alive for more than a decade.
Gov. Jeb Bush on Tuesday, acting under a hastily approved law by the Florida Legislature, ordered Terri Schiavo taken to a hospital where doctors could begin the process of rehydrating and eventually feeding her.
Attorneys for parents Bob and Mary Schindler said Terri Schiavo's brother, Bob Schindler Jr., was turned away Tuesday night when he attempted to see his sister. It was not clear what condition Terri Schiavo was in Wednesday morning, about 12 hours after she was moved from a Pinellas Park hospice where she was dying to Morton Plant Hospital in nearby Clearwater.
"They have been told Terri can have no visitors under Michael's order," said Tom Brodersen, a paralegal who is a member of the Schindler's legal team that has waged a years-long court battle to keep Terri Schiavo alive.
George Felos, the attorney for Michael Schiavo, did not immediately return a call for comment Wednesday morning.
The fight over Terri Schiavo's life took a dramatic twist Tuesday with Bush's intervention in the decade-long legal battle between the Schindlers and their son-in-law.
Michael Schiavo says his wife never wanted to be kept alive artificially and doctors have testified she is in a persistent vegetative state. The Schindlers dispute she had such wishes and say their daughter has enough functioning ability to laugh, cry and react to them.
Felos called the reinsertion of the tube "an absolute horrible tragedy for Terri Schiavo."
"The governor of the state of Florida does not have the right to trump a patient's personal choice," he said.
Felos said that on Tuesday, Terri was showing signs of massive organ failure and that the reinsertion of the tube is just prolonging her death. He said he did not know her condition Wednesday.
"She was literally absconded from her death bed in the middle of her dying process," he told ABC's "Good Morning America."
Observers wondered whether the Legislature and the governor overstepped constitutional boundaries by ramming through legislation that overruled the courts.
"It presents a new legal issue that I've never heard of," said former Florida Supreme Court (news - web sites) Justice Stephen Grimes.
The feeding tube was removed last Wednesday after a court refused to intervene. Doctors said the 39-year-old woman would die within a week to 10 days without nutrition and water.
On Tuesday, an ambulance took Schiavo from a Pinellas Park hospice to Morton Plant Hospital after Bush issued his order to resume feeding her. A crowd cheered outside as she left. A hospital spokeswoman on Wednesday said she could not release any information on Schiavo.
Hours earlier, the Senate voted 23-15 for legislation to save Schiavo. Within minutes, the House voted 73-24 to send the bill to Bush. The governor signed it into law and issued his order about an hour later.
"It's restored my belief in God," said Schiavo's father, Bob Schindler.
Michael Schiavo, meanwhile, was "deeply troubled, angry and saddened that his wife's wishes have become a political pingpong," Felos said. "He, as many others, is absolutely stunned at the course of events."
Suzanne Carr, the woman's sister, called the lawmakers' action "a miracle, an absolute miracle."
Felos scrambled to try to stop Bush's order. He filed a request for an injunction, but Pinellas Circuit Court Judge George Greer denied it on technical grounds. Felos refiled the request and State Circuit Judge W. Douglas Baird also refused to grant it.
"We won. Terri won," her father said after the ruling.
Felos said he believes the legislation is unconstitutional. It is Terri Schiavo's right under the Florida Constitution to not be kept alive artificially, and the courts have affirmed that, he said.
Harvard law professor Laurence Tribe said the action by Bush and the Legislature "violates the core principles" of a 1990 U.S. Supreme Court decision.
The court ruled in a Missouri case that Nancy Cruzan, who had been fed through a tube for seven years, could be permitted to die if "clear and convincing evidence" proved that was what she wanted. Her parents had fought for the right to remove the tube.
Schiavo never signed a living will, which lets people exercise their right to die should they become comatose. But her husband says she told him she would never want to be kept alive artificially; her parents said she never told them of the wish.
"I've never seen a case in which the state legislature treats someone's life as a political football in quite the way this is being done," said Tribe.
Felos will have five days to file additional arguments with the judge and the state will have five days after that to respond. The judge will then hold another hearing.
"It is simply inhumane and barbaric to interrupt her death process," Felos said. "Just because Terri Schiavo is not conscious doesn't mean she doesn't have dignity."
Court-appointed doctors have described Schiavo as being in a vegetative state, caused when her heart stopped in 1990 from a suspected chemical imbalance.
An editorial on attorney Felos: TERRI SCHIAVO TO DIE IN ATTORNEY'S "DEATH FACTORY"? SUNCOAST HOSPICE BOSS WAS GEORGE FELOS...
Becki Snow ^ | 10/16/03 | Becki Snow
Posted on 10/16/2003 1:13 PM PDT by dandelion
TERRI SCHIAVO TO DIE IN ATTORNEY'S "DEATH FACTORY"? SUNCOAST HOSPICE BOSS WAS GEORGE FELOS...
Man "finds" Wife unconscious.
Man keeps Wife unconscious.
Man gets malpractice money for Wife.
Man wants Wife's money.
Man wants Wife dead so Man can have money.
Man gets Lawyer.
Lawyer is/was Hospice Board Member.
Lawyer promises Man that Wife will die at the Hospice...
It reads like fiction, but it parallels the story of Michael Schiavo (the Man), Terri Schiavo (his Wife), and George J. Felos (the Lawyer/Board Member/Past Board Member of "The Hospice") - and unless some brave soul intervenes, it will end with the murder of Terri Schiavo.
Terri Schiavo, an incapacitated but warmly responsive young woman, is in the care of "The Hospice of the Florida Suncoast" ("Hospice House Woodside") at 300 East Bay Drive, Largo, Florida. But unknown to her advocates, all of Terri's medical care has been influenced by a Past Chairman of the Hospice's Board of Directors - George J. Felos, attorney for Michael Schiavo, and self- described "right-to-die" advocate.
Many of the Hospice nurses, volunteers, and doctors who are charged with the care, feeding, and unbiased medical evaluation of Terri Schiavo worked for George J. Felos, a man who has publically proclaimed that Terri must die.
The death Felos has prescribed for Terri starts with a ban on all but the most basic physical care - the once beautiful woman rots in her "Hospice of the Florida Suncoast" bed; Terri's advocates claim her teeth are unbrushed, her nails untrimmed, her infections untreated. This was not always the case - even after her brain injury, Terri's parents, Bob and Mary Schindler, kept her groomed and pretty. Terri was even starting to speak again - words like "yes" "no" and "stop that" - but that was before Michael Schiavo hired George Felos to help his wife "die with dignity". Now, Terri's parents have been safely removed so as to avoid "false hope". All media and medical access is tightly controlled by Micheal Schiavo and Felos; in response, Terri has at last physically and mentally degenerated to the level where she may be exterminated by polite society.
Terri's slow death will grind down to a brutal, final starvation, executed at Felos' request on Jan 3, 2003. Upon Terri's death, several hundred thousand dollars that were earmarked for Terri's long-term care and therapy will finally be released to her husband Michael Schiavo, his new lover and their baby, to his attorney George Felos, and quite possibly in turn to the Hospice itself. It is unknown if Felos would advocate quick death for hospice patients who do not have large sums of money lubricating their exit from life; evidently the Hospice has not been forthcoming with clients in regard to George Felos' true role at the Hospice.
"The Hospice of The Florida Suncoast" has kept this information largely out of the public eye, but an investigation of the Hospice's annual reports reveals a new twist in the case of Terri Schiavo: George J. Felos was the official but unseen hand of the Hospice - and he advocates death for those in his care.
Neither George Felos nor "The Hospice of the Florida Suncoast" have openly disclosed the facts of Terri Schiavo's case to Terri's many advocates - that from February 13, 1997 until at least April 26, 2001, George J. Felos was listed as a member or recent member of the Board of Directors for "The Hospice of The Florida Suncoast" on the non-profit's annual reports.
Certainly one would hope that if the true role George Felos had been revealed in court, Judge George Greer would have made a much different ruling concerning Terri Schiavo's fate. Without knowledge of this conflict of interest, the Sixth Circuit Judge would be forgiven if he seemed to believe that such a noble institution as hospice - caring compassionately for the dying - could be trusted to make an unbiased report regarding Terri Schiavo's medical condition and with her care. With the information regarding this conflict of interest, the courts will be remiss to believe any evidence that Felos OR his "Hospice of The Florida Suncoast" might proffer in reference to Terri. Considering this new evidence, it is the opinion of this writer that the courts of Florida would be complicit in Felos' duplicity should they not review this ruling.
Conversely, if Felos' chairmanship at the Hospice was indeed known to the courts during the trial, it would have been imperative that the court make this information known to the opposing council, Terri Schiavo's parents, and to the public. Suppression of information regarding the Hospice and Felos' conflict of interest would destroy the integrity of this court, considering that Judge Greer himself was declared by the court to be Terri's guardian ad litem by default. The guardian ad litem is required to act in the best interest of Terri Schiavo - not in the best interests of Mike Schiavo, the Schindlers, Attorney Felos or the Hospice. In the minds of many, no honest court could defensibly argue that Terri's best interests would be served by lawyers, individuals or entities who stand to profit from her death.
This information regarding lack of disclosure of conflict of interest by Felos and "The Hospice of the Florida Suncoast" should warrant appeal of the Court's Nov. 22 ruling, and should spur a call for further investigation into other cases of conflict of interest concerning the Hospice and Felos. The court's Nov. 22 ruling is based in part on medical information taken from Terri while she was in the care of the Hospice - information which may have been tainted by the lack of full disclosure regarding Past Chairman/Attorney George Felos.
According to The Hospice Patients Alliance Website and the Washington Post, ("Hospices Big Business, Thanks to Medicare; Exploitation of some patients is alleged" 06/14/98) this type of unethical activity is nothing new - it also may be illegal.
If "The Hospice of The Florida Suncoast" is to cast itself as an ethical entity, it should rectify and resolve this conflict of interest regarding it's Board of Directors and Past Chairman, George Felos: It is this writer's opinion that:
- The Board of Directors of "The Hospice of The Florida Suncoast" cannot justify their actions, or the actions of past Chairman, George Felos if The Hospice knowingly placed Terri Schiavo in the care of Felos and his paid/volunteer subordinates without disclosing his role at the Hospice to the court, the public, or the Terri Schiavo's parents.
- The Board of Directors of "The Hospice of The Florida Suncoast" cannot claim to be advocates for their clients if they are not fully open regarding the past or present roles of George Felos with their donors, the courts, or the clients they purport to serve.
- The Board of Directors of "The Hospice of The Florida Suncoast", cannot state they are caretakers if Felos and the Hospice worked together to hasten Terri Schiavo's death from the moment she was clandestinely removed from her nursing home and brought to the Hospice by Felos.
These new insights into the Hospice's inner workings raise questions that must be answered.
- How many elderly or infirm persons have Felos and the Hospice possibly exploited for monetary gain?
- How many other impaired but recovering persons may have been brought into the Hospice's "care" without their explicit consent?
- How many other incapacitated or differently-abled people might have suffered or will suffer the same fate as Terri Schiavo?
-Under Florida law, do these human beings qualify for the basic guarantees of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, or are they only products to be mined by George Felos and "The Hospice of The Florida Suncoast"? -If Felos and the Hospice espouse that incapacitated people have no rights other than those assigned to them by the Hospice and it's agents, then is "The Hospice of The Florida Suncoast" nothing more than a Death Factory?
It is the opinion of this writer that George Felos' "Hospice of The Florida Suncoast" is not an uninterested third party in this case, as they portray themselves to be. The Board of Directors hired Michael Shiavo's lawyer as their Chairman, then obscured Felos' role while bringing Terri under Hospice's care. "The Hospice of The Florida Suncoast" should come clean and come forward with any additional information they may hold regarding George Felos, Terri Schiavo, or any other hospice patients who may have been "represented" by Felos. The Hospice must also reveal any plans that they and their past Chairman of the Board may have for Terri's award money following her "facilitated" death.
For Michael Schiavo, George J. Felos and the Board of Directors of "The Hospice of the Florida Suncoast", it seems that Terri Schiavo's death cannot come soon enough - and unless the American public can persuade the courts to rule otherwise, Terri will die October 15, 2003.
Copyright November 24, 2002 - Becki Snow Disclaimer: This article is the opinion of Becki Snow, and makes no guarantee as to the accuracy or reliability of its sources although the sources have been verified as accurately as possible through public record resources.
This article may be copied and posted in accordance with fair use, in its entirety or excerpted, but only with full credit to the author and with notification to the author. Please notify the author by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
A note on a book authored by attorney, George Felos. He represents Michael Schiavo, who is insisting that Terri be allowed to die:
Litigation as Spiritual Practice George J. Felos
ISBN: 1-57733-104-4, 344 pp., 6x9, hardcover, $24.95
Blue Dolphin Publishing, 2002
"Such a deep, dark, silent blue. I stared as far into her eyes as I could, hoping to sense some glimmer of understanding, some hint of awareness. The deeper I dove, the darker became the blue, until the blue became the black of some bottomless lake. "Mrs. Browning, do you want to die ... do you want to die?" I nearly shouted as I continued to peer into her pools of strikingly beautiful but incognizant blue. It felt so eerie. Her eyes were wide open and crystal clear, but instead of the warmth of lucidity, they burned with the ice of expressionlessness.
With this meeting, Attorney George Felos became the legal advocate of Estelle Browning's right-to-die and in the process plumbed the depths of death and dying and spearheaded a social revolution to enable death with dignity in the state of Florida. Felos uses this case and Fellouzis vs. United States of America - a decade-long tax battle sending him to Hong Kong's back alleys in search of antique jades and ivories - as framework to interweave the story of his law practice and spiritual unfoldment.
Litigation as Spiritual Practice describes the excitement and drama of the courtroom, and the ecstasy and anguish of spiritual evolution in a combative environment.
If the seemingly barren and war-strewn field of litigation can be the playground where spirit dances, it can revel anywhere.
"Yoga philosophy draws heavily on the analogy of life as a battlefield between the ego and who we are beyond the ego. Telling the story of his real-life battles in the courtroom and reflecting on his inner journey into the practice of the perennial philosophies of yoga and meditation, George Felos offers a fascinating doorway into the inner and outer struggle of the Self." Sudhir Jonathan Foust, President, Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health
So, there's a spiritual agenda??
Felos learned how to meditate, to "notice" his reactions to his thoughts. He says he learned the events in his life were only as important as he thought they were.
And he learned about other cultures and Eastern religions. Christianity, Buddhism, Islam, Greek Orthodox worship -- all may have a point, Felos says.
"I believe that Christ was God incarnate and was resurrected. But, by the same token, I believe that there were other incarnations of God as well," he says. "All the great religions in their essence express the same fundamental truths."
Source: The spirit and the law By SHARON TUBBS
� St. Petersburg Times, published May 25, 2001
"Immediately after Terri Schiavo collapsed back in 1990, Michael was quoted as saying the following:
"I believe in the vows I took with my wife, through sickness, in health, for richer or poor. I married my wife because I love her and I want to spend the rest of my life with her. I am going to do that."
A jury ended up awarding Michael $1.3 million in a medical malpractice case and stipulated that $750,000 was to be used for Terri's medical care. Instead of making sure Terri had the best doctors money could buy, Michael placed a "do-not-resuscitate" order on Terri's medical chart.
He's spent the following years doing everything he could to end Terri's life -- some say to pocket what's left of the money that should have been used for Terri's care
To combat Terri's family's efforts to save her life and provide her with basic medical and rehab care, Michael hired George Felos, who has been called the "Dr. Kevorkian" of attorneys. Felos doesn't just support assisted suicide, he actively purses making it legal across the country.
Then, Michael struck up a relationship with a woman who now describes him as "emotionally manipulative" and says Michael talked constantly about wanting Terri to die.
Michael had better luck in his second affair and now has a live-in girlfriend. They already have one child out-of-wedlock and another on the way.
You probably know the rest of the story ...
Terri's feeding tube has been removed, Michael denied her what might have been her final chance at having communion, Terri's family says he wants her body cremated so he can cover-up potential abuse, and now Governor Jeb Bush and the Florida legislature have given Terri and her family a renewed hope.
Michael's fighting Terri's victory in courts -- still trying to end her life."
Y.W.C.A. Chief Dismissed 6 Months After Being Hired
By BRIAN WINGFIELD
Published: October 20, 2003 NYTimes.com
WASHINGTON, Oct. 20 � The feminist leader Patricia Ireland has been dismissed as chief executive officer of the Y.W.C.A. less than six months after she was hired to lead the 144-year-old organization.
Ms. Ireland was notified of the board's decision last Thursday in New York, where she was attending a conference after a three-day trip to California on Y.W.C.A. business.
Ms. Ireland said in an interview today that members of the Y.W.C.A.'s National Coordinating Board had met with her in New York and first asked for her resignation. She said she had declined because she did not want to give the impression that she had "jumped ship."
"I was uncharacteristically speechless," Ms. Ireland said. "There had been no notice."
Her dismissal was first reported in this week's edition of Newsweek.
The Y.W.C.A.'s appointment of Ms. Ireland last May drew strong criticism from some conservative groups, which asserted that her background made her unfit to run an organization founded as the Young Women's Christian Association.
Among the concerns they cited then were Ms. Ireland's tenure as president of the National Organization for Women, which supports gay and lesbian rights as well as a woman's right to seek an abortion, and her living with a woman in the early 1990's while remaining married.
Mr. Ireland today praised the Y.W.C.A. as a "wonderful organization with a lot of potential," and she declined to comment on specific issues on which she and the organization's executive board disagreed.
However, Ms. Ireland did speculate on two areas that might have led to her dismissal. She said that in recent years the Y.W.C.A. had been more focused on restructuring than on advocacy work, and that her enthusiasm for advocacy might have "raised some disquiet in some quarters."
She also mentioned an article in The New York Times last May about conservative groups that opposed her appointment as the Y.W.C.A.'s chief executive. At that time, the chairwoman of the Y.W.C.A.'s National Coordinating Board, Audrey Peeples, said that she had not anticipated the intensity of the criticism surrounding its choice of chief executive.
Ms. Ireland said that those comments "set this relationship off on a somewhat difficult course."
Ms. Peeples declined to comment today on the reasons for Ms. Ireland's termination and would not discuss whether the group gave her any warning.
"We had a meeting with her. We told her at the meeting," Ms. Peeples said. "Patricia knows why she was terminated." She also emphasized that advocacy work is one of the Y.W.C.A.'s "hallmark issues."
Ms. Peeples added that the organization and Ms. Ireland were committed to the same goals � the economic empowerment of girls and women and racial equality � but that "the Y.W.C.A. was really just not the best place for her platform."
"We agreed to disagree," Ms. Peeples said.
Dorris Daniel-Parkes, a 15-year Y.W.C.A. veteran and the group's former director of human resources, was named interim director while the Y.W.C.A. conducts a search for a new chief executive.
Ms. Ireland said she harbored no animosity toward the organization, and that she would cooperate with the new chief executive so that there would be a "seamless transition."
A statement on the Y.W.C.A.'s Web site says, "The organization provides shelters for women and families, administers violence-prevention programs for more than 700,000 women and children, and serves more than 750,000 children in child care and after-school programs." It added that its 300 Y.W.C.A.'s should expect no change in operations because of Ms. Ireland's departure, nor should any services the group provides be affected.