Old Patriot's Pen

Personal pontifications of an old geezer born 200 years too late.

NOTE The views I express on this site are mine and mine alone. Nothing I say should be construed as being "official" or the views of any group, whether I've been a member of that group or not. The advertisings on this page are from Google, and do not constitute an endorsement on my part.

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Location: Colorado Springs, Colorado, United States

I've been everywhere That was the title of a hit country-and-western song from the late 1950's, originally sung by Hank Snow, and made famous by Johnny Cash. I resemble that! My 26-year career in the Air Force took me to more than sixty nations on five continents - sometimes only for a few minutes, other times for as long as four years at a time. In all that travel, I also managed to find the perfect partner, help rear three children, earn more than 200 hours of college credit, write more than 3000 reports, papers, documents, pamphlets, and even a handful of novels, take about 10,000 photographs, and met a huge crowd of interesting people. I use this weblog and my personal website here to document my life, and discuss my views on subjects I find interesting.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Thou Shall Not Kill

The sixth commandment is no Congressional law, thousands of pages long. Nor is it a Supreme Court ruling, filled with hundreds of pages of briefs. It's very short, and to the point. There's no ambiguity here, there's no "slither room". God didn't say "don't kill your neighbor on Thursday", or "don't kill other Jews", He said, "Thou shall not kill." Period.

I'm pretty sure God meant just that - that mankind was not to take what it couldn't restore. Any death not caused by accident or natural causes is unacceptable. This makes sense if you believe that Man was made in God's image, and by Him, to have stewardship over the Earth.

Good men, even the best of men, sometimes violate this commandment, not with pleasure, but with the ultimate of remorse. The military uses force to achieve national objectives, but only under the direction of the President, and the approval of Congress. People die - hopefully only those who oppose this force, and hopefully only those that resist sufficiently that only in death will they be stopped. Yet in every war, some of our own also die. The United States has always hesitated before entering into war, and only gone forward when no other solution would work. This is true even of Iraq and Afghanistan, it was true in Bosnia, and Vietnam, and Korea, and the Pacific, and Europe - twice.

We hire police officers - people to protect us from those that obey no commandments - and give them authority to do whatever is necessary to stop those that would prey upon us. Even these men don't use force first, but try to stop those that violate the rules of our society by other means before resorting to the ultimate in force.

Killing another human being isn't easy, and it never should be easy. It should only be done when there's no other choice to save one's self, or to protect those that depend upon us to protect them. Yet this nation has already taken the first steps toward cheapening life, and making killing easier, less of a burden on consciousness, and more "acceptable".

No unnecessary death is acceptable. That includes the tens of thousands of children killed before they're ever born, or those too old, too feeble, "too far gone", for life to mean much to them. The death penalty is the ultimate in punishment, and should only be used when the failure to remove someone from society permanently and uneqivocably, is the only sure solution to guarantee the life and freedom of the rest of us. We make it as hard as possible to execute someone, simply because it IS an action that cannot be undone.

The courts in the United States have decided that one person should die, simply because her husband says she wouldn't want to live in her current condition. Yet there is no written document, and the only evidence is heresay on the part of her husband. Her husband has some major compromising baggage - an adulterous relationship with another woman with whom he now has two children, his refusal for her to be administered rehabilitative services which may have eased her problems, and even denying her right to medical service. Why, then, should this man be allowed to decide if his wife should live or die?

Why should ANY man be allowed to decide that someone should live or die? This is not a death caused by the denial of life-sustaining machines. Terri Schiavo can breathe on her own, her heart beats of its own accord, and her lungs work just fine. She needs no help to breathe, can swallow, and even has some very minor voluntary movement, and responds to outside stimulus. She is ALIVE. Only, because of her husband and a complicent court, she is being killed, starved to death, dehydrated until her system shuts down, and she dies. This is not a natural process, but one imposed upon her. She is being killed. None of the weasel-words will change the odor of this process. No amount of excuses will bring forgiveness.

Perhaps what the people who are killing Terri Schiavo are doing is "legal", but God help us for descending this far from what He made us. There will be a call to judgment for every one who has failed to save Terri Schiavo's life, and that Judge will not be lenient.


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