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2005 In Review: A Low Mark For Fox's Culture War

Reported by Deborah - January 1, 2006

On March 21, 2005, Sean Hannity planted himself in front of Terry Schiavo's Hospice in Florida creating a grotesque media circus for nine nights on Hannity and Colmes.Each night Hannity and a bizarre cast of characters demonized Michael Schiavo, distorted Schiavo's medical condition, and rallied the right wing foot soldiers who came in droves to surround the hospice. Chanting with their hateful signs these protestors even tried to send their children inside with cups of water for Schiavo who no longer could swallow. Alan Colmes remained in New York trying to inject some sanity and balance to the massive hysteria but the frenzy was out of control .

This recollection is not about the issues surrounding Terry Schiavo's death. It's about those nine days of horror and filth and mass hysteria.

Michael Schiavo inside the hospice with Terry was demonized each night by the Schindlers and their allies. On the first night the Schindlers set the tone by accusing Michael Schiavo of killing his wife. On other evenings family friends and other witnesses shared their stories of Michael Schiavo's evil intentions. Their testimony was always taken as truth by Hannity and any questioning by Colmes was percieved as insensitive and heartless.

Then there were those dubious medical experts like Dr Hammesfhar who claimed that Terry could definitely be rehabilitated. Hannity presented him as a Nobel Prize Nominee which turned out not to be true. Then there were the stream of nurses claiming that Terri followed them with her eyes and liked to eat jello.

Things started to heat up and more caution thrown to the wind on the night that it was claimed that Terri pleaded for her life when the feeding tube was removed. The same night Randall Terry, Operation Rescue, held an on stage press conference built in front of the hospice. By this time things were totally out of hand.

The circus did not end with Terri Schiavo's death. Twelve hours after her death H&C still did their broadcast in front of the hospice.This show was by far the most offensive and frightening. The hate coming from Hannity and the protestors turned my stomach and left me shaking.

comment: Watching this mass hysteria night after night was actually a painful experience for me. I was sickened by the lynch mob mentality that grew with the nightly nourishment from Hannity and his crusaders. I wonder if anyone involved looks back on it with regret? I hope so.

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