>The Right to Life

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One day several months ago on a main highway which passes through the town in which I live, both sides of the road were packed, knee deep, with people of all shapes and sizes. Something big was happening here. There were mothers with baby carriages and fathers with their kids perched up on their shoulders. I saw grandmothers and grandfathers. They were white, black, Asian, Hispanic. Some were sitting and others were standing. I had never seen anything like it, so naturally, I was curious. As I drove, I slowed down so I could read the signs that some were holding. I soon came to realize that they were supporters of an organization whose members believed in the “right to life.”

Their signs read “Don’t kill unborn babies” and “abortion is murder.” As I drove on I came upon a group of people encouraging the passing traffic with signs containing the words: “honk if you love life.”

I didn’t honk.

It is not that I don’t love life. It’s that I know some secrets about life. As an advocate for the elderly, especially those who become victims of abusive guardianships and conservatorships, I have seen first hand the possible nightmares that are in store for the “babies” that this crowd so diligently fights to bring into this world.

When the “baby” grows old and frail there are no demonstrations when all their civil and constitutional rights are taken away or when the “baby” is isolated from the people and places they know and love, removed from their homes and warehoused in institutions where they will be forced into incontinence, subjected to physical, chemical and psychological restraints against their will and have a perfect stranger appointed by the court who will ignore the wishes of the baby and instead will make all of the decisions for the rest of the “baby’s” life.

The stranger is given the misnomer of “guardian”. The crowd holding up their signs might be shocked to learn that this “guardian” can not only dictate how the “baby” lives, but also how the “baby” dies.

You might find this hard to believe, but just ask Sarah Harvey. Her husband Gary is lying in a hospital bed in New York while a group of people, some of which might have even been a demonstrator once, are meeting to discuss removing her husband’s feeding tube which will cause him to experience a slow, agonizing death. Sarah’s one wish is for her husband to come home to die. But, the “guardian” who makes the decisions for the “baby” refuses.

And this is just one example of why I could not bring myself to honk.

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