it was a disgusting display to watch, but a couple good things did come out of it:
- the radical right-wing put on a display so outlandish and shameful that it (along with other trends) is seriously damaging the republican party... many "real" conservatives are disgusted by the crass disposal of actual conservative values such as state's rights, while many evangelicals think bush (gw) and bush (jeb) are traitors for not doing more to save terri, comparing them to pontius pilate and such
- it inspired many, many people to talk about right-to-die issues, living wills, power of attorney, etc with their loved ones, so that they won't be put through what terri was
- it inspired an actual good episode of south park (and those are much more rare than they once were, so they are indeed reason to celebrate)
anyway, a lot of people are linking to this eric boehlert article on salon about the schiavo media circus, and with good reason: it's awesome.
Has there ever been a set of protesters so small, so out of proportion, so outnumbered by the press, for a story that had supposedly set off a "furious debate" nationwide? That's how Newsweek.com described the Schiavo story this week. Although it's not clear how a country can have a "furious debate" when two-thirds of its citizens agree on the issue or, in the case of some Schiavo poll questions (i.e., Were Congress and President Bush wrong to intervene?), four out of five Americans agree.
But the "furious debate" angle has been a crucial selling point in the Schiavo story in part because editors and producers could never justify the extraordinary amount of time and resources they set aside for the story if reporters made plain in covering it every day that the issue was being driven by a very small minority who were out of step with the mainstream.
that's just the lead... it's worth sitting through the salon ad to get a day pass for. (or if you adblock it just right, you might be able to get a day pass without actually seeing the ad itself.)
it even included this little tidbit that i hadn't heard before, but that makes the whole situation very clear:
what a sad situation.