Schiavo Family Asks Protesters to Go Home

Terri Schiavo’s parents have asked the protestors gathered outside her hospice to go home and let their daughter die in peace.

Schiavo Family Asks Protesters to Go Home (AP)

With their hopes of a miracle fading and other options exhausted, Terri Schiavo’s parents and siblings reached a quiet resignation Sunday and asked protesters to go home as the severely brain-damaged woman spent a ninth day without food and water.

Those outside the hospice where Terri Schiavo is being cared for were not as calm, with the first of what would be four morning arrests coming as ministers attempted to bring Schiavo Easter communion. About a half-dozen people in wheelchairs later got out of them and lay in the driveway, shouting “We’re not dead yet!”

Police protecting the hospice were loudly heckled, prompting Schiavo’s brother, Bobby Schindler, to come out and ask the protesters to tone down their behavior. “We are not going to solve the problem today by getting arrested,” he told the restless crowd of about three dozen people. “We can change laws, but we are not going to change them today. … You are not speaking for our family.”

With very few exceptions, protestors for any cause tend to represent its most obnoxious segment. The irony here, though, is that these people gathered to rail against the dehumanization of Terri Schiavo are contributing mightily to it. Not only does Terri Schiavo deserve to die with dignity but her family deserves to sit their final vigil with her in peace. Even though they’ve brought the spotlight on themselves with their public battle, they still should have some privacy during this time.

James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Kappiy says:

    Even more, the relatives of other people at the Pinellas Park hospice where Schiavo currently is have had to suffer needlessly from the crazy protesters.

    The wire services had an account of a woman who had trouble getting through all of the security set up to keep the selfish religious nuts at bay only to be harrassed and delayed so she couldn’t be with her grandfather when he passed away at the hospice.

  2. bryan says:

    Actually, it’s not the *Schiavo* family, but the Schindler family. Poor headline writing on someone’s part.

  3. James Joyner says:


    True. I’ve had the same problem, though. You want the keyword “Schiavo” in the because that’s the story people are following. It would have been better to say “Schiavo’s Family” but that tends not to be headline writing style.

  4. Just Me says:

    Also, there are Michael Schiavo supporters protesting outside the hospice as well.

    Frankly, I thought the whole protest stuff outside the hopsice was always in poor taste, but I am not much for people standing around holding signs to promote their cause anyway.

  5. bryan says:

    Perhaps in this case, “Terri’s family” would be apropos. But it’s the Schindler family doing the asking, so the headline is technically incorrect without the apostrophe.

  6. Jon H says:

    I thought it was in enormously bad taste for Hannity & Colmes to broadcast from outside the hospice.

    That was just so wrong.