Talk:Terri Schiavo case/Archive 8

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Unnecessary duplication of content

Under the Schiavo's condition title, the two subtopics, Issues of Dispute and Medical Condition are largely repeats of each other. Some hardworking editor needs to remove the duplication and streamline this section--anon

Larry King Live transcript of Michael Schiavo misinterpreted below

sorry, NCDave, but you're mistaken, IMHO. I didn't want to interrupt your flow so I put it up here.

I saw the show hoping to gain an understanding of what was going on. Later I read the transcript and I can tell you that he was talking about Terri's parents statements. It is not easy to discern from the transcript alone unless you have an open mind, which you obviously don't. It would have been easier to understand if the transcriber had inserted (sarcasm here) or put in quotation marks. But whoever it was didn't do so. This is why in depositions people are allowed to review their statements and sign them. Consider the fact that neither Larry King nor any of the other people on the show, who heard the irony in his voice interpreted the statements (live) as you did. Now you go on for paragraphs on what it all means and your conspiracy theories. Should we take your statement "we have two witnesses..." to mean that you are part of the Schindler's legal team? aw gee, did I misinterpret??? You see? Pardon my saying so but perhaps your involvement in the subject is warping your perception. That is okay by me but you and admins might reconsider the question of whether Wikipedia is the place for you to work out all these things. It just looks like you are using this as a forum to "blow the doors off" one side of this question. IMHO


Michael Schiavo admits the truth

A few days ago Michael Schiavo departed from Felos's script, and admitted the truth on Larry King Live:

CNN LARRY KING LIVE March 18, 2005:

  KING:  Have you had any contact with the family today?  This
    is a sad day all the way around, Michael.  We know of your

  M. SCHIAVO:  I've had no contact with them.

  KING:  No contact at all?

  M. SCHIAVO:  No.

  KING:  Do you understand how they feel?

  M. SCHIAVO:  Yes, I do. But this is not about them, it's
    about Terri.  And I've also said that in court.  We didn't
    know what Terri wanted, but this is what we want...

Read that last sentence again:

   M. SCHIAVO: "We didn't know what Terri wanted, but this is what we want..." 

That's consistent with what he told other people (including a girlfriend) up until the malpractice settlement was awarded (which he stood to inherit): that he didn't know what Terri's wishes would be. It also vindicates guardian ad litem Pearse.

It also means that a key official conclusion of Judge Greer was wrong. Greer ruled that there was "clear and convincing evidence" that Terri had told Michael that she not wish be kept alive with assisted feeding or other support if she were in this condition. But now you know that is untrue, because Michael, himself, admitted it:

Terri never expressed a wish to die in circumstances like these.

NCdave 16:37, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)

You're making an awful lot of conclusions based of a single phrase, taken out of context. It is _us_ who don't know what Michael Schiavo meant to say. --Itinerant 17:26, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Lemme see if I have that right, Itinerant. We can't really know what Michael Schiavo meant, although we heard it and have a record of it, but we can know what Terri Schiavo meant, although we've never heard it and no one has a record of it?? — Bill 18:02, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Right. We also have two witnesses who, in sworn testimony, testify that Michael Schiavo said exactly the same thing to them, in the first few years after Terri's collapse: that he had no way of knowing what Terri would want. But we're supposed to believe that all three of them were lying, because otherwise it is impossible to justify killing Terri. NCdave 21:15, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)
So, a Larry King Live interview now carries more weight than multiple sworn court witnesses, many of whom weren't, as is appropriate to the laws of both physics and biology, not Michael Schiavo? Oh, that's rich. I've seen so many people screw up what they're saying on LKL, precisely because, if you look above, they're forced to answer in single sentences and condense whole incidences down to sound bites.Professor Ninja 18:23, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Michael's slip-up on LKL is consistent with what he used to say, prior to hiring Felos in 1997. Michael's sworn testimony in 1992 was that he was going to take care of Terri for the rest of his life. There is also sworn testimony from two of Terri's friends who say that, in past conversations, Terri said that she felt that they should not have removed Karen Ann Quinlan from the respirator. There is also the sworn testimony of two of Michael's girlfriends who say that he repeatedly told them he had no idea what Terri's wishes were.
In the the judgement of guardian ad litem Pearse, Michael's belated recollection about Terri's wishes was not credible, not only because it took him 7-1/2 or 8 years to "remember" it, but also because, "Mr. Schiavo will realize a substantial and fairly immediate financial gain if his application for withdrawal of life support is granted." NCdave 14:38, 6 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Of course a television interview is not a statement in front of a court. But no matter how you cut it, a clear witnessed statement by a principal is a clear witnessed statement by a principal. If Terri had left a clear statement of her own — general agreement about that, at least — none of this mess would have occurred. Equally obvious is that the statements made in court were not sufficient, is that the case looks like it is about to be "resolved" (from a legal standpoint) not on those statements, but on what essentially is the Schindlers' lack of standing. Bill 19:22, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Consider for a moment NCDave how you would fare if every mistype of yours was taken as an accurate and binding statement of your thoughts. DJ Clayworth 18:27, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)
So, DJ, what do YOU think he meant, if he didn't mean what he said?
And, if you think up a possible different meaning, then how SURE are you of it? Are you 100% sure he didn't mean what he said? Are you 100% sure that those sworn witnesses who claim he said the same thing back in the early 1990s are lying? Because if there is any doubt then the standard of proof necessary to justify killing Terri has not been met.
So tell us, DJ, how sure are you? NCdave 21:15, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Not to mention that it's a rush transcript. And Larry King cuts Michael Schiavo of in mid stream (at first I thought the ellipses were NCdave following editing convention and taking M. Schiavo out of context, turns out LKL just cuts him off in the interview to talk about money.) This may have a place in the article, as the media articles on the Schindlers saying they'd lie about Terri's wishes or render her a quadruple amputee, but it doesn't belong in the first paragraph. Period.Professor Ninja 18:39, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)
There's nothing "out of context" about it. The context is fine. King changed the subject with his next question, but that doesn't make Michael Schiavo's remark "out of context."
It is perfectly obvious what Michael Schiavio meant. There is no other possible interpretation. He meant what he said, which is that they don't know what Terri would want done. He forgot to lie. He's been drilled and scripted to the max by Felos, but sometimes he forgets his lines. That's probably why he contradicts himself so much.
Note that if there is ANY doubt about the truth of his previous claim, that Terri said she'd rather die than live like this, then the courts are SUPPOSED to err on the side of life. Since Michael Schiavo is contradicting himself about it, obviously there is plenty of doubt. So that SHOULD be sufficient to void Greer's finding that there was "clear and convincing" evidence that she ever expressed such a desire. NCdave 21:15, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Uh, no. That's selective listening, you're hearing what you want to hear. Those ellipses in the rush transcript indicate that he wasn't finished talking and was going to elaborate on it, before Larry King interrupted him. There's also the interesting sidenote that people make slips of the tongue without any deeper, evil Freudian meaning. I can't count the amount of times I've meant to say one thing and completely contrary to my true intentions said something totally and completely different. Three facts alone, the lack of context because he didn't finish what he was going to say, that it was a rushed answer without much forethought, and that it's not a legal testimony, make it totally moot, despite what you wish was true. Sorry dave, I don't fault your passion or dedication to this, but you're attempting to use wikipedia as a trial lawyer; which it isn't. Your point that he did say this (at least according to a rush transcript) may belong along with the article which quotes the Schindlers asserting that they'd lie to keep Terri alive even if they knew she wanted to die, but nowhere else, especially not in the first paragraph. Professor Ninja 22:22, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)
The Schindlers never said they would lie about anything. But Michael is an admitted liar:
Schiavo said he told his in-laws that all the money had gone to his wife — a lie he said he told Bob Schindler "to shut him up because he was screaming."
-USA Today, March 24, 2005
The poster above made an excellent point NCdave... imagine quotes around that sentence... "Do you understand how they feel?" asks Larry. Michael replies, "Yes, I do. But this is not about them, it's about Terri. And I've also said that in court. 'We didn't know what Terri wanted, but this is what we want...'" -- quite different... imagine after the ellipses he was going to say "this is what Terri's parents say" or something as such. Give me a break. There's also the problem of why he uses "we". The only "we" between the singular Michael Schiavo and the plural parents are the parents. I'm now of the opinion that this absolutely dones't belong in the article at all. Professor Ninja 00:35, 25 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Reading the entire transcript in context, I have to agree with the individual who actually saw the show, and posted above (Seesdifferent). If Michael's comment came accross the way you're suggesting, there's no way Larry King would have just dropped it, and cut him off to talk about something else. --Azkar 01:42, 25 Mar 2005 (UTC)
I suspect what he meant was something like, "no one knows for sure what Terri would have wanted in this situation, whether she would have wanted us to fight against her parents as we did or not, or even whether she would have def wanted to die in this situation. What we want is to interpret her stated wishes best as we can understand them. We believe based on her comments to me and other she probably would have wanted to die in a situation such as this and assume she would have wanted to fight her parents for this right."--anon
Actualy in retrospect, I'd have to conclude that he was actually trying to say what her parents we're like. They don't know what Terri wanted but they do know what they want...--anon
Well, that's not what he said. Hours after Terri's feeding tube was removed, Michael was being interviewed, and what he said was, "But this is not about them [the Schindlers], it's about Terri. And I've also said that in court. We didn't know what Terri wanted, but this is what we want..."
Note the context. Obviously, "this" was the removal of the feeding tube, which had just happened. "I've also said that in court" refers to his previous sentence in which he said "this [the removal of the feeding tube] is not about them, it's about Terri." So for your interpretation to be correct, either he's saying that the Schindlers said they wanted Terri off the feeding tube (rediculous!), or else his two uses of the word "this" have to refer to two entirely different things (with no indication of what the 2nd "this" refers to!), and he also must have suddenly gone from calling the Schindlers "them" to calling them "we." That just doesn't makes a bit of sense.
What makes sense is that he flubbed his lines (not the first time!) and accidentally said what he used to say, before he hired Felos (in mid-1997): that he has no idea what Terri wanted. NCdave 14:38, 6 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Dr Hammesfahr

The fragment about Dr. Hammesfahr keeps being pruned of all mentions of his Nobel Prize nomination. I feel it's important to have that information in there. Many magazine and newspaper articles refer to Hammesfahr as "Nobel Prize nominee". This automatically gives a lot of credibility to Schindler's argument. It's one thing to have a professional opinion from a Nobel Prize nominee ( feels like he's almost a laureate ! ) It's different when we find out that the nomination is based on a letter written by a congressman, because congressmen are not included in list of people allowed to make such nominations, and there's no evidence of him being nominated by anyone else. Finally, Hammesfahr mentions his nomination on his own web site, although he of all people should know that the nomination is not legal. This makes him look like fraud - opposite end of the spectrum. Right now none of this information is in the main article: it only says that the doctor was exonerated of something, and gives a link to a pro-Schindler site.

Important links:

Hammesfahr's web site

Hammesfahr's nomination - read the name of the prize carefully

Overview of the situation

--Itinerant 17:27, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)

haha .. I didn't notice the prize name, the first time I had read this letter. "Nobel Peace Prize in Medicine". That's rich. --Azkar 17:55, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Yeah, I've seen that too -- Nobel Peace Prize! Let's get Lester B. Pearson's medical opinion, while we're at it. If this information keeps cropping up, I say, leave it in. Explain it. He claims to be nominated for a Nobel Prize, however nobel prize nominees aren't announced for 50 years after their nomination, and any person can be nominated by their peers.
OK, I've added one phrase, let's see how long it lasts. --Itinerant 20:14, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)

And who took his first name out? I'm a local; he used to be an advertiser in a medical newspaper I art directed; I was the one who added said first name. I'll be happy to provide a picture of the "Hammesfahr Neurological Institute", if anyone needs a chuckle.  :-) Off to shoot a picture of the protestors... --Baylink 23:00, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)

The links to the following paragraph no longer work so I think the paragraph (because the sources are unverifialbe) should be taken out:

Hammesfahr was disciplined by the Florida Board of Medicine in 2003 (PDF file) ( and has been accused of falsely claiming to be a Nobel Prize nominee. [3]

The link in the article works now --CVaneg 00:46, 25 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Michael ordered?

In the intro, it says

Michael ordered her feeding tube removed after a Florida court blocked her parents' efforts to prevent the removal.


Michael Schiavo [...] contends that he is carrying out his wife's wishes

I think this is imprecise: the court ordered the removal of the feeding tube, after agreeing with Michael's contention that it would be his wife's wish. The parents appealed and lost. At this point, not even Michael could order the reinsertion of the tube. Legally, the court is the actor, Michael is not. AxelBoldt 19:14, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)

I agree. Actually it says so in a couple of places further in the article: "Judge Greer ordered ... ", etc. This is an issue that should be given a clear explanation. Journalists make it look as if Michael has the supreme power over the tube, he can order it removed or reinserted at any time, and if he passes guardianship to someone else, that other person will be able to choose to keep Terri alive. There's also a different point of view - that Michael has passed the decision whether to keep her alive to the trial court in 1998, the court decided to 'pull the plug', and Michael does not have any power since then. This seems logical but does not explain why Michael spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on lawyers in 1999-2004. I don't know the right answer here. --Itinerant 19:46, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Nurse's affidavit

Yesterday I inserted the following paragraph into the "various accusations" section:

A former nurse from Terri's nursing home has filed an affidavit claiming that Michael did not allow any therapy for Terri, was eager to see her die, and even repeatedly injected her with insulin to make that happen. [1]

User:Astanhope saw fit to delete all of it with the sole comment "Sorry, no". I prefer a more substantial discussion of reverts.

The nurse has recently been giving interviews on the Fox News channel, so I think it is a relevant angle of the case. I'm open to more NPOV formulations of the paragraph, for instance including Michael's reaction to the affidavit, if one can be found. AxelBoldt 19:24, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)

As long as this is stated as summarizing an affidavit, and not concluding that it's factual (or not factual), it is NPOV. An affidavit was filed, and that's what it says.... — Bill 19:34, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)
I agree with both of you. I remember there was something about the affidavit that was peculiar, for example, which should be included (I'd like to dig up that information, if I recall correctly, there was something unusual about the filing of the affidavit that "altered" it's legal status -- I could be thinking of another incident entirely.) However I'd also like a note that Iyer also never brought up portions of this information in her previous testimony, which is also true. There's alot of strange things going on in this case from all sides, and I think it's worthwhile to point them all out as NPOV as possible. Professor Ninja 22:26, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Here's a little more background information, also about the other nurse's affidavit: [2] AxelBoldt 23:43, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Suggesting a lock

Maybe locking the page until she is pronouced dead would be a good idea. I realize there will still be some maneuvering on Schindler's part but I'd really hate to see this page go to misinformation, libel and/or vandalism in the coming days.

??? It's amazing how well-behaved we've all been on both sides of the issue; very little vandalism, if a lot of tweaking. I see no purpose in a lock, although signing one's comments might be nice. — Bill 20:04, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)
/me chuckles. --Baylink 23:04, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)

The Vatican?

After having read this interview I believe that the unequivocal statement that the vatican has joined the legal fight on the Schindler side is factually wrong and should be removed or altered to reflect the fact that the Vatican is as devided on the issues as everyone else. Preisler 20:46, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Well (no matter how much non-Catholics, an even some Catholics, may be bemused by it), only the Pope, and by proxy, the official Vatican newspaper, the Osservatore Romano, speaks for "the Vatican"; individual Catholics — Jesuit priests or laypersons — do not. If one can trust the news media, an editorial has appeared recently in the Osservatore Romano, condemning the Schiavo killing. I do think, though, that it is factually wrong to say that the Catholic Church is involved in the legal fight, unless it has filed an amicus curiae brief in all this. — Bill 21:02, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)


Following a flurry of candalism I protected the page. Discuss any change here; I hope that the page can be unprotected as soon as possible. If any significant updates occur, an admin can edit the page. --Neutralitytalk 22:50, Mar 24, 2005 (UTC)

There's so many people watching this page that the vandalism gets reverted immediately and protection should not be needed because two anons vandalized the page in the course of one hour. And you've been so heavily involved with this page that you probably should have left that call to a more neutral admin to avoid the appearance of any impropriety. Sorry for the candor. Preisler 23:08, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)

I agree with User: Preisler. Also after this was closed the same thing turned up on Sun Hudson. Saopaulo1 23:47, Mar 24, 2005 (UTC)

Also agree with User: Preisler - This is an ongoing event, this page undergoes a (usually productive) edit every few minutes, and vandalism is weeded out pretty quickly. -CrucifiedChrist

I've unprotected the page, given the above comments. It seems there are enough folks to monitor this for vandalism. Fuzheado | Talk 00:14, 25 Mar 2005 (UTC)

I believe that to be a mistake. Many of the non-neutral changes to this article take a lot of work to correct, as apparent from the edit history. I've avoided editing the article beyond replacing the blatantly POV image, because I don't want to continually fight people who obviously don't understand the neutrality policy, or even how to produce neutral sounding text.Gmaxwell 00:59, 25 Mar 2005 (UTC)
I'm sympathetic to your concerns, but unfortunately page protection is only authorized in the policy for edit wars or vandalism. It's not for a general concern that the article is not NPOV. The solution for the latter is, well, to edit. Or you could add the neutrality disputed tag and enumerate the issues here in the Talk page. See: Wikipedia:Protection_policy#Uses for the policy. Fuzheado | Talk 01:05, 25 Mar 2005 (UTC)
And such edits are removed within a couple of hours through a number of revisions... The disputed tag also keeps being removed. :) Gmaxwell 01:33, 25 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Wanted to add.. I didn't intend to whine.. I understand the policy.. it makes sense, the situation is just unfortunate. I say the edits are hard to remove because they come in little batches, interspersed with good edits, to fixing them requires going through the paragraphs with a hacksaw, since it's too difficult to point revert bad edits without losing good ones.Gmaxwell 01:39, 25 Mar 2005 (UTC)