Terri Schiavo ended up in a coma because she suffered from bulimia. Her husband was vilified and threatened with death; she herself was treated by the Right as a symbol of perfect innocence: a sexless, pliant, endearingly pathetic angel.
Rigoberto Alpizar suffered from bipolar disorder; he was gunned down stupidly and dangerously in front of his wife, to the gratified applause of the Right.
The hospice workers who looked after Terri Schiavo were fiends created by the culture of death; the air marshals who shot Alpizar are protectors who represent the culture of life. Fifteen years of failed medical treatment was not enough for Terri Schiavo; fifteen seconds of deliberation and caution were more than Alpizar and his wife and family deserved. The Schiavo case proves that the system is corrupt; the Alpizar case proves that it works. As the Washington Times said, chillingly:
Mr. Alpizar's death is a reminder of how seriously the marshals treat airline security. We should all take due notice.Praise the lord, and pass the ammunition. Taser International suggests that air marshals could be given less-lethal weapons...tasers, for instance. For once in my life, I'm inclined to agree with them.
One official defender of the killing makes an interesting argument:
"Hollywood has this perception that we are such marksmen we can shoot an arm or leg with accuracy. We can't."It's odd that someone who might have to use a gun in a pressurized cabin at 35,000 feet would bristle at the suggestion that he should be an especially accurate marksman. If Alpizar had actually had a bomb, it's possible that shooting him would have detonated it. At any rate, any terrorist who makes it through multiple security checks - as Alpizar did - will certainly understand the usefulness of the dead man's trigger.
Alpizar's brother expresses his skepticism about the official narrative in direct, honest language - the sort of language that's completely alien to the administration's indefatigable shoeshine brigade:
"With all the advances that the U.S. has supposedly made in their war against terrorism, I can't conceive that the marshals wouldn't be able to overpower an unarmed, single man, especially knowing he had already cleared every security check," Carlos Alpizar said Thursday of his brother's death, in a telephone interview from Costa Rica. "I will never accept that it was necessary to kill him as if he was some dangerous criminal."Unfortunately, the hysterics and idolaters who make up Bush's base long ago decided that no amount of pointless death or suffering could tarnish the glory of the War on Terror; it justifies all actions and answers all objections, particularly when counterbalanced by such tender mercies as the ghoulish exploitation of a woman with a liquefied cortex.
We should all take due notice.