The lesson of Tom DeLay's mortal hypocrisy.
This is what happens when you approach a tragedy as a politician rather than as a family member. You see quality of life as a slippery-slope abstraction, not as a reality affecting someone you love. You find it easy to impose a standard of documentation that would have forced your family to break the law. You second-guess a spouse in a way you would never second-guess your mother. You challenge people's competence and impugn their character. You perceive the afflicted person more as God's tool than as God's child.
I don't have a lot of respect for a man who treats a woman this way. But to dismiss him as a hypocrite would further politicize a case he has already politicized too much. My question is: What kind of man is he? My answer is: He's a better child than politician. So are we all. That's why families should make these decisions, and Congress should stay out.
Will Saletan covers science, technology, and politics for Slate and says a lot of things that get him in trouble.