MICHAEL J HYDE ON SCHIAVO CONTROVERSY-Andrew Stelzer04/21/06
Wake Forest communications professor Michael Hyde was the guest speaker at the University of South Floridaâ€™s Tampa campus today, speaking about euthanasia, the Terri Schiavo case, and the use of language in the way various people, and groups tried to communicate their messages in the battle over whether to remove Schiavos feeding tube and kill her. Hyde characterized the entire sags as reflective of humans search for perfection, especially in the exaggerations made by both Michael Schiavo and Terri Schiavos parents, both of whose books Hyde read in preparation for his own writings. ACT â€œHave any of you read the books, I incorporated the books they are gut wrenching, depressing, name calling, they are written for certain audiences, argumentative logic is thrown out, its insane, we are using these books were looking at that to get ideas of whoâ€™s out thereâ€¦it was written after they did a market analysis..was it written for you or another audience?.Schiavo book is written for audience..â€?
Hyde said the language used to manipulate public sentiment was often devoid on logic. ACT â€œJeb bush got involved in this, and pointed out, he pointed out, incapable of speaking for herselfâ€¦how people will use discourse to construct a presence to get us to think about her characterâ€¦isnâ€™t this strange, hereâ€™s the guy who puts up terries law and people who say she can talkâ€¦what is he saying, doesnâ€™t make any difference itâ€™s a show, thatâ€™s part of the crime, the Schindler..â€?
But the rhetoric, Hyde explained, brought Terri Schiavo back to life in many media observers minds, in contrast to what was actually taking place. ACT â€œMany of the doctors that were on Schindler's side said I looked at the tapes..how could a doctor do a diagnosis, who told them to use senator Frist and let them say I didnâ€™t do the exam but I saw the video, how did the American public accept that..? they did?..â€?
Hyde criticized the so â€“called culture of life as subjective, and said the religious interference in the situation simply increased the medias harassment of the family and was not helpful. ACT â€œThe idea of a culture of life is the philosophy of life, and being in medicineâ€¦the pope said itâ€™s a natural means ..I mean I donâ€™t even know what to say to that, without technology woman is dead..it has to work by gravity..the pope did was he said itâ€™s a miracle, and he converted it to a miracle..there are no miracles in science..â€?
Hyde also read a statement, which was released by the Life Legal Defense Foundation ACT â€œTerri is not dying..she is merely disabled..even if she is a persistive vegetative state..shes in minimal consciousness, sheâ€™s disabled, you want to be able to make that move..Once sheâ€™s disabled you have a community that will make arguments, on the lines fighting, not because of Schiavo, but because they are afraid of the right to die argument, and that leads to horrendous consequences, w think far too much of ourselves, we are amoebas..â€?
Hyde is the author of 2 books, and one more in progress, which touch on the topic of euthanasia. In this capacity, he has worked several times with an advocacy organization called Not Dead Yet. ACT â€œNow not dead yet got involved, Steven drake I respect them, they are disabledâ€¦its not easy..nobodys perfect, I donâ€™t see anybody going..but the argument by drake is important..down syndrome, thatâ€™s hyperbole, I donâ€™t see that kind of move, its far fetched thatâ€™s the kind of disservice that can be used and its very powerful, they are defecating into a bag and they are making an argument, whoa its incredible..â€?
But Hyde said an experience he had gives him compassion for the Schindler family and their quest to keep Terri Schiavo alive. ACT â€˜When my father died of kidney failure, I was in Washington, flied to se him, he didnâ€™t make it, and they came out to my mother so he can say goodbye to his son, it didnâ€™t work, I said I wouldnâ€™t have done that, and in the book on conscience, what if he did and I was there, and I didnâ€™t put in this device, you to live with thatâ€¦â€?
That was Wake Forest communications professor Michael Hyde, author of the Call of Conscience and The Life-Giving Gift of Acknowledgement. His next book is due out soon.