Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Terri Schiavo and Rev. Jackson: The odd couple?

“The Terri Schiavo case has now met the immutable law of six degrees of separation. The Rev. Jesse Jackson today joined Mrs. Schiavo’s parents in saying she is being, ‘starved to death,’ thus aligning the man who was yesterday defending Michael Jackson against allegations of child molestation to those insisting Mrs. Schiavo is being mistreated—thus separating the man who most loudly claims Republican voting fraud in Ohio last year from those now insisting that Congress overreached in legislating the Schiavo case into the federal courts. In short, for those who view this as an entirely political story, they don’t know what the Hell to think tonight.”

Keith Olbermann on MSNBC’s "Countdown with Keith Olbermann," March 29, 2005.

Rev. Jackson prayed with Terri Schiavo’s parents last night. Terri Schiavo’s mother, Mary Schindler, said she wanted him there “for moral support. I feel good with him here. [He is] very strong. He gives me strength.” The Rev. Jackson in turn said, “This was just waiting for her to die. There is something about that that is profoundly immoral and unethical…She is not dying with dignity. She is being STARVED to death. She is being DEHYDRATED to death. We are now in a massive death watch. Look at her without food and water when we have food and water. That’s MERCILESS [Emphasis in the tone of the Jackson statement].”

As reported on “MSNBC’s Countdown with Keith Olbermann," March 29, 2005.

One question that I didn't hear Olbermann raise is [although I could have missed it as I didn't watch the whole program], "Where has Rev. Jackson been for the last 12 days?" I mean, why did it take him so long to speak out and act on what he characterizes as "profoundly immoral."

Yes, I would concede what Judge Easterbrook [7th Circuit Court of Appeals] has emphasized in other contexts, "Wisdom come lately is better than wisdom not come at all." But if this is wisdom, why did it take so long for Rev. Jackson to go public with it? Usually, the guy can't get there fast enough. Aging reflexes?
Jeff Berkowitz, Host and Producer of Public Affairs and an Executive Recruiter doing Legal Search, can be reached at