Google just recently alerted me to May 25 blog on Huffington Post by Joni Eaerckson Tada on the April 13 Dr. Phil interview with Annette Corriveau. She was not impressed with how he handled it. Neither, apparently, were a coalition of unnamed organizations and individuals who wrote to Dr. Phil, accusing him of promoting the idea that parents should have the right to euthanize their disabled children.
Did we watch the same program, I wonder?
Eareckson Tada’s Objection’s to the Dr. Phil Interview with Annette Corriveau
Eareckson Tada, who is the founder and CEO of the Joni and Friends International Disability Centre, had several objections to the Dr. Phil interview with Annette Corriveau:
- For a discussion on euthanasia, there should have been a wider variety of guests reprepresenting a a wider spectrum of perspectives. If this had been a general discussion on euthanasia, I wouldn’t agree more. But it wasn’t. It was an interview with one woman whose controversial views had put her in the news. For context and comment, a person who supported her views and a person who opposed her views also talked. I would have loved to have seen this topic get two episodes so that they could have brought in more voices on either side, but it was an interview and it didn’t even get an hour. The Dr. Phil interview with Annette Corriveau covered a lot in less than an hour.
- It was biased toward her position. No, it wasn’t. I actually found Dr. Phil to be firmly in the camp of Annette Corriveau’s two adult children. He specifically said that while he would not want to continue if he had their disabilities (and he is entitled to his opinion), they can’t tell us how they’re feeling about life and what they want done on the basis of that. Therefore, even if Annette Corriveau did have the right to euthanize them, to do so would be wrong, as she’s making an assumption that they want to die. (This is the part that really disgusts me too, by the way…just because she feels that she”d want to die if she was in their situation doesn’t mean that they want to.) If Tada wants to talk about biased television, the “16 x 9″ episode about Annette Corriveau that appeared on Global Television is available on the internet.
- Dr. Phil used “mercifully” in the question when he asked the audience about whether Annette Corriveau should be able to kill her childen – Ereckson Tada seems to think that fewer people would have raised their hands had “mercifully” not been used in the question. I’m not convinced.
Ereckson Tada also said that in the “Uncensored” video (which appears generally appears on the Internet after summary for each Dr. Phil episode, but I could not find it for this one when I searched), Dr. Phil and his staff were much more pleased with how the show went than they had a right to be. Ereckson Tada believes that he was very irresponsible.
Maybe there’s something wrong with me, but I just don’t see it.