You think you know the whole story...but you don't know the truth.
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A religious zealot offered $250,000 to anyone who would kill
me. My two babies were threatened with death. I was
condemned by the president, the majority leaders of the
House and Senate, the governor of Florida, the pope, and the
right-wing media, all because I was doing what Terri—the
woman I loved—wanted.
I didn’t respond to their attacks.
I didn't confront their lies.
...You may know the headlines about what came to be known as
The Schiavo Case, but that doesn't mean you know what really
happened. And you certainly don’t know why. Frankly, that's
because my efforts while Terri was alive were concentrated
on giving her the best care possible, and waging the legal
battle to ensure that the promise I'd made to her—that she
wouldn't be kept alive artificially—would be kept. I didn't
have time for public relations. I didn't have time to expose
the hidden agendas of all sorts of people, most of whom
wouldn't have known who Terri was if they passed her on the
street. That's why I wrote this book, and why it's called
Terri: The Truth.
When Terri collapsed in February, 1990, I was certain that
she would recover. My love for her kept that hope alive in
me for years. But there came a time when I had to face the
medical facts. Now, I can finally tell you what caused me to
conclude that it was time to let her go. And I can also
answer the questions that seem to trouble many people: why
didn't I just divorce Terri and allow her parents to take
over as her legal guardians? And how could I be in a
relationship with another woman, and have two children with
her, while Terri was still alive?
I loved Terri from the time I met her in a college class in
1983, and I've never stopped loving her. Throughout the
fifteen years since she collapsed, I devoted my life to her
care. The people—from ordinary citizens to the highest
elected politicians—who said otherwise, who called me a
murderer, were either completely misinformed, or had
I have no argument with those who may honestly disagree with
me and the choices I have made. But honest disagreement over
principle is not what has characterized this story, in my
I've now had almost a year to reflect on The Schiavo Case,
on what it means to me, and what I believe it means to
America. As public and contentious as it was, at its heart
is an agonizing decision that many Americans may have to
face someday. It is my hope this story may help guide their
decisions should that time come.
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