Dr. James Benjamin over at The Left End of the Dial has given us a great "snapshot" of what life's been like in Pinellas Park, Florida of late. No one who lives there, goes to school there, has a business in the area, or has family members in the hospice, has been spared from the disruption caused by the crusaders calling themselves Xians.
With the rabid rabble of the radical right bringing their right-to-life jihad to the doorstep of Ms. Schiavo's hospice, a quiet neighborhood has been turned into a warzone. This debacle has turned a serene environment where many come for their last days on this earth and where loved one's spend quiet moments with their terminally ill family, into a place where people are taunted, sworn at and generally forced to endure added stress at an already difficult juncture in their lives.
People can say all they want about God and how religion has transformed their lives, but the past few weeks in Florida has convinced me that most of what passes for religion is just whitewashed ugliness.
My heart goes out to Michael Schiavo, Terri's parents, the Schindlers and any other families that are going through a similar ordeal. I hope that if I'm ever faced with something similar, I won't have to endure the farce that these poor folks had visited on them by a bunch of zealots and crazies.