by Steven Ertelt
May 2, 2006
Philadelphia, PA (LifeNews.com) — The local judge responsible for authorizing Terri Schiavo’s painful 13-day starvation and dehydration death bashed Florida lawmakers at a bioethics conference for passing a law that allowed Governor Jeb Bush to step in and save her life. Circuit Court Judge George Greer said legislators should not be involved in end of life decisions.
Speaking at a bioethics forum sponsored by the University of Pennsylvania, Greer claimed state legislators are unable to make quality decisions about important issues surrounding medical treatment for the disabled or terminally ill.
He claimed the Florida lawmakers who passed Terri’s Law to stop her euthanasia death did so with "little to no debate" and with "significant arm-twisting."
A representative of Governor Bush told the Associated Press that wasn’t the case and said the legislature debated the bill for two days — long than any other measure.
The U.S. Supreme Court ultimately declared Terri’s Law unconstitutional and both federal and state courts upheld Greer’s ruling saying Terri’s former husband Michael could kill her.
While courts sided with Michael, the Florida legislature, Governor Bush, Congress and President George W. Bush all sided with Bob and Mary Schindler and their efforts to prevent her death.
Before his appearance at the Penn forum, the Schindler family criticized the university for inviting him.
The title of the symposium sheds some light on why Greer and Michael were both featured. The Center for Bioethics, which doesn’t approach issues from a pro-life perspective, called the conference "The Legacy of the Terri Schiavo Case: Why is it so hard to die in America?"
No one supporting Terri or the Schindler family was invited to speak.
"Judge Greer’s presence at the University of Pennsylvania’s bioethics conference is not only outright offensive and inappropriate but it is indicative of his own biases against the disabled," Bobby Schindler, Terri’s brother, said in a statement provided to LifeNews.com.
"We are entitled to a fair and unbiased judiciary," Schindler added. "Judge Greer is confirming exactly what my family has maintained from the beginning of Terri’s case – that he has a disposition against the vulnerable people whose cases he controls."
Greer has achieved considerably notoriety and fame from those who back euthanasia following his role in sentencing Terri to a painful 13 day starvation and dehydration death.
In December, the Pinellas County chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union honored Judge Greer at an awards dinner.
Judge Greer came under intense scrutiny in the Terri Schiavo case and was accused of colluding with Michael’s attorney, assisted suicide advocate George Felos, in appointing an "impartial" doctor to assess Terri’s condition whose brother had previously worked with Felos.
Since Terri’s euthanasia death, Schindler and the rest of his family have headed up the Terri Schindler Schiavo Foundation, a group to help disabled patients. Bobby and his sister Suzanne Vitadamo gave her full-time jobs to work at the center.
Meanwhile, Michael formed a political group to target pro-life lawmakers who sided with Terri’s family during the legal battle.
TAKE ACTION: Express your views by going to https://www.bioethics.upenn.edu/bioethics/?pageId=10