The Terri Schaivo situation that has riveted America for the past several weeks will not be revisited in Missouri if a group of state legislators, including Ed Emery, R-Lamar, have their way.
HB 905, sponsored by Rep. Cynthia Davis, R-O'Fallon, would prevent anyone from removing feeding tubes unless the patient has given "specific written authority" to do so, provides the patient with an explanation of what the effect of removing feeding tubes would be, or in the event the patient is comatose, a physician must place a certification to that effect in the patient's file.
Violations of this law would be a Class C felony with criminal and civil penalties possible.
In a section of her website , www.cynthiadavis.net , entitled "life issues," the representative explained her view. "The importance we put on protecting innocent human life is an indicator of our level of civility. Government must protect the helpless from those who are willing to injure others, especially those who are motivated by financial gain. This encompasses the issues of abortion, human cloning and euthanasia."
Rep. Emery, in a recent column, talked about the Terri Schaivo controversy.
"The explanation of America’s cultural decline is twofold," he wrote. "First, it has declined gradually, a step at a time, and we have 'adjusted' to each decline. Secondly, cultural decline has followed a loss of Constitutional integrity. America’s Constitution took power out of the hands of England’s elite judges and put it into the hands of the people. It acknowledged a clear delegation of powers from God, to the people, to government. We have watched as God has been progressively removed from our culture. But as God has been removed, government has subtly moved up to assume His power - the power of life and death over the innocent.
"The branch of government least accountable to the people (Judiciary), has assumed control over life and death. The courts deemed Terry Schiavo unworthy of life because she could not feed herself and had to be fed by someone else. The defenders of the courts’ actions must ignore both history and conscience to side with the all-powerful courts.
"At last, Americans are catching on to what we have allowed to happen. We have allowed political dogma to supplant compassionate deliberation. The trend has been predicted by a few: no fault divorce, abortion, partial birth abortion, somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT), and now euthanasia. Terry Schiavo’s death may have brought the cultural struggle into clear focus.
"We could easily give up, but America has a history of snatching victory from the jaws of defeat. If we determine to restore meaning to the constitution, faithfully enforce checks on the courts, and return to defending life at every stage, America may once again become a defender of life. 'Remember Terry' could become the rallying cry."