March 25, 2004

Columnist Misplaces Cerebral Cortex. Writes Anyway.

THE COLUMNIST E. J. Dionne Jr. wraps up a "late-to-the-wake" column in the Washington Post by being the 1,627th person to offer the stunning rationale:

"What does it mean to be pro-life? As far as I can tell, most of those who would keep Schiavo alive favor the death penalty."
-- A Thin View of 'Life'

You see this one offered up about as often as the nerdy guy on TV loses another loan to Ditech. Here though, the loser is the writer who has lost, it would seem, his mind. It takes about 2 nanoseconds of reflection to understand that the first part has to do with keeping an innocent woman alive while the second part has to do with putting a convicted killer to death. We can talk about whether or not the execution of killers is the right thing to do, but being in favor of it in no way means "OH, THE HYPOCRISY!" when it comes to keeping an innocent alive.

Why the Washington Post would pay people who can't think and type at the same time is beyond me, but it was always so.

Posted by Vanderleun at March 25, 2004 10:23 AM
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"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

Why the Washington Post would pay people who can't think and type at the same time is beyond me, but it was always so.

It's called "charity"; I hear Mr. Dionne is lousy at stuffing envelopes...

Posted by: P.A. Breault at March 25, 2005 11:10 AM

My favorite is people getting sanctimonious about marriage (paging Andrew Sullivan) while completely ignoring the fact that this particular husband left this marriage except for the piece of paper. (Which I don't have a problem with in itself, but then you can't claim to be the spokesperson for your wife.)

(For the record, I am in favor of gay marriage. And I hope Andrew never lies brain-damaged in a nursing home while his husband takes up with a new lover, while claiming to be the person who would know Andrew's wishes.)

Posted by: Yehudit at March 25, 2005 12:02 PM

Dionne has been brain dead for quite some time now. Can his feeding tubes be removed?

Posted by: ChiefTestPilot at March 25, 2005 1:57 PM

Lost another one to Die-tech.

Posted by: Doug in Colorado at March 25, 2005 3:14 PM

When did anyone opposing gay marriage ever define "sanctity of marriage" in terms of "husband may have the power of life and death over his wife", anyway? That is a new one on me. Can you think marriage is sacred - even Michael's and Terri's - and still think husband and wife shouldn't be able to order each other's deaths?

In any case... Dionne may be brain-dead, but this is hardly a new argument. It's made all the time about pro-lifers; he's just re-purposed it. (Many of those are Catholic "seamless garment" types who oppose the death penalty anyway, but let that pass.) It doesn't come across as a serious argument in that context either. It's more of a whiffle-ball bat to hit the opposition with. The arguer swings with all his might, the opposition feels the gentle touch and says "huh?" instead of "ouch".

Posted by: jaed at March 25, 2005 7:39 PM

Has Mr. Dionne also observed that most of the "Right to Die" and "Pro-Choice" crowd oppose the death penalty for vicious, remorseless murderers?

Posted by: Roderick Reilly at March 27, 2005 8:13 PM

Murderers, unlike Terri who is innocent, have done things to deserve death, and *choose* to face the possibility of death when they commit their crimes. They have a CHOICE. Terri didn't CHOOSE to become disabled. There's absolutely no proof that she'd "want" to die either.

Posted by: nickernow at March 28, 2005 6:05 PM