Federal Appeals Court Again Defeats Effort to Save Terri Schiavo

Bioethics   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Mar 30, 2005   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Federal Appeals Court Again Defeats Effort to Save Terri Schiavo Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
March 30
, 2005

Atlanta, GA (LifeNews.com) — A federal appeals court for the second time turned back an effort by Terri Schaivo’s parents to stop their daughter’s painful starvation death. They were hopeful when the court allowed their attorneys to file an overdue appeal, but the court turned it down today.

The decision comes after a second ruling by a three judge panel of the full court’s members who unanimously denied the request for an injunction to stop Terri’s death and defeated a request for a full hearing on the merits of their lawsuit.

Bob and Mary Schindler lost their previous appeal to the full 11th Circuit Court of Appeals on the same 10-2 vote.

"Any further action by our court or the district court would be improper," Judge Stanley Birch Jr. wrote in the court’s decision. "While the members of her family and the members of Congress have acted in a way that is both fervent and sincere, the time has come for dispassionate discharge of duty."

Judge Birch blasted President Bush and Congress in their attempt to head off Terri’s death.

"In resolving the Schiavo controversy, it is my judgment that, despite sincere and altruistic motivation, the legislative and executive branches of our government have acted in a manner demonstrably at odds with our Founding Fathers’ blueprint for the governance of a free people — our Constitution," he wrote.

But, Judge Gerald Tjoflat wrote a dissent for himself and Judge Charles R. Wilson saying the Schindlers "have now stated a plausible claim” that the Constituton requires clear wishes before someone’s feeding tube can be withdrawn.

The Schindlers also faced another setback when the 2nd District Court of Appeal in Florida upheld Judge George Greer’s ruling preventing the Florida Department of Children and Families from taking Terri in to protective custody.

The state agency hoped to do that while it investigated allegations of abuse and neglect against Terri’s estranged husband Michael.

Meanwhile, Terri’s family said they continue to hold out hope for her.

"We’re going to do everything we can. She’s still alive," her brother, Bobby Schindler, said Wednesday.

Terri Schiavo’s father Wednesday said his daughter is "weakening."

Terri is "still fighting," her father Bob Schindler said at a press conference outside Woodside Hospice where Terri lives.

"Terri is still with us…under the circumstances she looks darn good, surprisingly good. She is weak from the lack of food and hydration, but her skin tone is fine," said Schindler.

He said Terri’s vital organs appear to be functioning still and he was "encouraged that she’s still fighting."

He also said he was worried about "rumors that have been put out there" about Terri’s condition.

Related news stories:

CBS News Posts Prewritten Story Saying Terri Schiavo Died

Terri Schiavo’s Parents’ Last Motion on Terri Saying "I Want to Live"

Terri Schiavo Case Reveals How We Treated Disabled Americans

Neurologists: Terri Schiavo Not in Persistent Vegetative State

Related web sites:
Terri Schiavo’s parents – https://www.terrisfight.org