Friday, April 01, 2005

The religious right's support for keeping Terry Schiavo alive through a feeding tube presented an interesting paradox on their part. For a group that has given science a lot of flack, it is odd that they would equate "God's will" with keeping Schiavo alive through the use of a feeding tube, a product of modern medicine. Of course, this problem suggests that trying to determine God's will is a fruitless task: did God will in humans the power to create technology and medicine that can prolong life or did God will that humans not subvert God's powers through science? Who knows.

Still, the religious right has so often positioned themselves against modern science, believing the Bible to offer better insight into the existence of man than empirical study. That is why it is odd that this group finds God's will is for an unconscious person to be kept alive through modern technology, a product of scientific reasoning and discovery. This is the danger of introducing the idea of God's will into the argument over keeping someone in a coma alive or not: that God's will cannot be determined by humans, and this is where the religious right, who so often take pot shots at science, get themselves in hot water.

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