Blind Man's Love
The lesson of Terri Schiavo's autopsy.
Same thing with the balloon clip. The judge in the Schiavo case notes that elsewhere on the hours of videotape her father "tried several more times to have her eyes follow the Mickey Mouse balloon but without success." The Times reports that at one point
her father gets gruff while trying unsuccessfully to get her to follow [the] balloon. "Come here, Terri, no more fooling around. No more fooling around with your dad." He pokes her in the forehead to make sure she's awake. "No more fooling around with your dad. Listen to me. You see the balloon? You see Mickey?" Later, he apologizes, telling her others have admonished him for his tone.
This is what happens when you deny reality. First you lose your senses, then your mind, then your soul. It isn't Terri Schiavo who's refusing to see what's happening in that awful scene. It's her dad. And it isn't her defect, or her husband's sin, that's revealed in the autopsy report. It's ours. We were blind. We could not see.
Will Saletan covers science, technology, and politics for Slate and says a lot of things that get him in trouble.
Photograph of Terri Schiavo by Matt May/Getty Images.