My previous article, titled “A Nurse’s Perspective: Justice Scalia’s Death in Texas is the 21st Century Version of the Assassination of JFK,” explored some rhetorical questions that may never be answered due to the procedures followed by those on the scene. Some posting comments questioned the comparison of Justice Scalia’s death to the assassination of JFK. Just as there are questions that remained unanswered about skipped procedures, procedures ignored or procedures altered with JFK, there are questionable procedures occurring in the aftermath of the Supreme Court justice’s death. Justice Scalia may or may not have died due to natural causes. The point is the very nature of what occurred post death of Justice Scalia does not conform to a reasonable and prudent norm that most individuals and professionals expect.
In light of the events and according to expected standards, an autopsy could be considered part of the investigation by law, subject to family approval or not. However, the family requested no autopsy be performed. Eugene Scalia, 52 year-old son of Justice Scalia, explained on The Laura Ingraham Show the family’s reason.
Scalia, a lawyer, stated in the radio show, “Our family has no doubt that he was taken from us by natural causes. We accept that. We’re praying for him. We ask others to accept that and pray for him.”
With that statement, the younger Scalia acknowledged his understanding of why people might have a difficult time accepting the passing of his father.
According to Western Journalism:
“My father, he was like a force of nature,” he said. “He seemed sort of a permanent institution. But he’d have been the first to tell you — the first — that, you know, we’re from dust, we return to dust. Your life can be taken from you at any instant. He was a month shy of 80 years old. He led this incredibly full and active life. But I knew, and he knew, that he was in a place in life where he could be taken from this world at any time, and that’s what happened last week.”
Scalia is one of nine children the late justice had with his wife of fifty-five years, Maureen. “Everybody loses their dad at some point,” the oldest son observed. “And I feel blessed that it’s not just the family who feels that he was great, but that there are millions of people who feel that and so many, like you, who are honoring it.”
Eugene told Laura Ingraham that his mother is a strong woman who is holding up well. “I don’t know that the Lord could design a better support network,” he said. That includes “a built-in priest,” the justice’s son, Paul.
The funeral for Justice Scalia will be held at 11 am on Saturday, February 20, 2016, at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC. Justice Scalia will lie in repose on Friday at the Supreme Court where the public may pay their respects.
The family of Justice Scalia has no doubt he died from natural causes and asks everyone to respect their acceptance. While I believe many in America respects the family’s wishes, it still does not quell the questions that many have regarding possible “procedural” missteps. If it were my family member, who died under the exact same circumstances, I would question the individuals’ credentials on the scene who determined resuscitation efforts were futile, Texas Statutes and the undocumented allowance of judges determining death, and why no one on the scene initiated the emergency response system commonly done by reasonably prudent individuals. One should ask one’s self, “If it were me who found Justice Scalia under the circumstances, would I activate the EMS and initiate resuscitation measures or not?” Then, turn around and ask, “If it were me who found anyone under these circumstances, would I activate the EMS and initiate resuscitation measures or not?” Go one-step further and ask, “If it were me or my family member, what would I expect individuals on the scene to do?”
In answering these questions, it provides a point of reference to what a reasonable person would do. It would be reasonable and prudent to activate EMS and initiate resuscitation measures until EMS arrived. In some areas, when EMS is activated, a sheriff or police officer subsequently arrives on the scene.
Additionally, most States have what is known as “Good Samaritan Laws” to protect non-medical professionals when rendering aid to individuals in an emergency.
Evidently, in Texas, one does not activate EMS in this circumstance. Neither would EMS be activated when distance is an issue. It seems it is reasonable and prudent for an individual without medical training to determine if one is dead or not, determine whether emergency medical services are required, and a judge can pronounce one dead without any examination, no medical training, being on the scene, and based on someone else’s findings who is not medically trained.
Being this appears to be the case, it might be reasonable and prudent for one to avoid Texas and the Cibolo Creek Ranch if one has health issues, just in case; or, the State of Texas should re-evaluate its statutes on these types of situations.
Since Justice Scalia’s family has asked the public to accept the Justice died from natural causes, it is upon the individuals comprising the public to determine whether or not that request can be honored. Accepting that Justice Scalia died from natural causes does not negate asking questions regarding the procedures followed or events occurring at the Cibolo Creek Ranch in the State of Texas after the Justice’s death. Those procedures affect every resident of Texas and all individuals visiting the State. For me, it will remain an unknown as to the cause and manner of death due to questionable procedures and actions occurring after finding Justice Scalia.