Republicans in Washington are once again demonstrating that when it comes to using religion for political gain, there is no such thing as going too far.
While many a CSU student spent the last week doing body-shots off of 16-year-olds and auditioning for "Girls Gone Wild," the president and his lap-dog Congress were busy kissing up to the so-called moralists of this country. The case in point is the shameful exhibition surrounding a brain-dead Florida woman and her right to die.
The woman, Terri Schiavo, has been trapped in a comatose state for the last 15 years, unable to move, talk, communicate or understand her surroundings. For years now, Schiavo's husband and parents have engaged in an epic struggle through the courts to determine whether Schiavo's husband has the right to carry out her wishes not to remain in a vegetative state or whether her extremist-Catholic parents can step in and overrule the desires she made known to her spouse.
What is ironic in this position is that Schiavo would not be in this state without her own willingness to deny herself proper nutrition. You see, Schiavo was apparently suffering from an eating disorder, which led to a chemical imbalance that stopped her heart from beating and effectively her brain from functioning.
But this is all pomp and circumstance in a situation that should be being handled privately between two families in a court of law. Unfortunately, in our ever-increasing age of activist federalism, when there is a morality case to display before the American people, Republicans are ready to pounce.
If the conservatives in Congress don't agree with what our country's courts are ruling, "just change the laws" appears to be their modus operandi. Republicans scattered across the world returned early from their Easter vacations so as to enact a bill applying only to Terri Schiavo that would prolong the process of appeals, which has been going on for so many years now. The president viewed the case as so important as to interrupt yet another one of his vacations in Texas and return to Washington. They all no doubt viewed themselves as heroes, coming to the rescue of the poor and innocent, like X-Men in blue suits.
Unfortunately, they are all scoundrels who care no more about Terri Schiavo's right to life than I do about whether the richest 1 percent gets another tax break. This is about politics at its lowest and worst.
A leaked memo circulated among Republicans in Congress attests to this fact. The memo explains the opportunity the case provides to once again show how Republicans are on the side of God while the Democrats have obviously sold their souls to Lucifer in exchange for gay rights and gun control.
The king of flip-flop himself, President George Bush – then governor of Texas – signed a law in 1999 giving spouses the first right in decisions regarding cases such as this. Apparently, like mass executions and gun racks, what's good for Texas is not always beneficial to the rest of us.
Being a Republican used to be akin to a libertarian. The party was about individualist freedom, small government and limited foreign involvements. Needless to say, the party of Abe Lincoln has strayed a bit from these once-sacred beliefs.
Now being a Republican means telling others when to have children, whom they can marry and whether or not they can die. Not to mention the holding of citizens without due process of law and the outsourcing of torture and murder. Real Christianity is handing over suspected terrorists to Jordan and Egypt and turning a blind eye to the methods used to extract information. How holy it is to kill more than 100,000 Iraqi citizens in the name of freedom. How utterly pious you must be to enact sanctions on the citizens of countries who already suffer under their despotic leaders' rule.
To be a Republican now seems to mean applying religion and law only when it benefits election counts the most.
JP Eichmiller is a senior journalism major. His column runs on Wednesdays in the Collegian.