When Congress directed the federal courts to take a fresh look at the Schiavo case, it was to be “de novo,” that is, to relook at the evidence with a fresh eye. Yet, Judge James D. Whittemore looks to have been more of a rubber stamp.

For example, the federal courts were to determine whether the clear and convincing evidence standard had been applied to determining Terri’s desires. Remember, all we have are hearsay statements from Michael, his brother, and his brother’s wife. Also, Michael told conflicting stories to different courts. When he wanted $, he told a malpractice jury Terri would live a normal lifespan. When he wanted Terri dead, he said she urged him not to let her live in her present circumstances.

Yet, rather than look at the evidence itself—which is what a de novo review is supposed to do— Judge Whittemore states, “The state judge applied the heightened clear and convincing evidence standard in determining her intentions, as permitted by Cruzan and in accordance with [statute # omitted].”

UNBELIEVABLE. Judge Greer stated he applied the standard so I find he applied the standard. That is not a de novo review! The sense of profound injustice in Schiavo only continues to grow.

Articles by Wesley J. Smith

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