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No easy answers for life#039;s tough questions

A Florida judge may be forced to do the impossible today - play God. Pinellas Circuit Court Judge George Greer may settle the long-running court battle over the life of a brain-damaged woman today.

Terry Schiavo, who suffered severe brain damage 15 years ago this week, allegedly asked her husband to never allow her life to be sustained by artificial means.

Doctors say Schiavo is in a persistent vegetated state with no hope for recovery. A feeding tube that nourishes her body maintains her life.

Family members have disputed over how to handle the always-difficult decision over whether or not to continue her life through artificial means.

Members of her family have sought to remove her husband Michael's status as Terry Schiavo's guardian.

No easy answer exists. It's a decision that many, many Americans must face each year. Fortunately, most do not receive the glaring media spotlight that the Schiavo case has received.

How do you determine when all hope is lost? How do you decide when to stop fighting the inevitable?

Simple questions with difficult, sometimes troubling, answers.

The case is one of those riddles in which no "correct" answer exists. What's worse is that the courts will decide upon the family dispute. Anyone who has ever been involved in or witnessed a family matter decided by a court of law, knows that no one wins.

In fact, the only positive, if a positive can be found in such a sobering case, is that the publicity the case has brought might spark other families to discuss the matter and put their desires in writing.

Too often, no one wants to discuss such things until it is too late to do any good. We may never know how Terry Schiavo truly feels right now - if she feels anything at all.

In Schiavo's case, if the judge ultimately allows the woman's husband to have the feeding tube removed, the nation will watch, and wait for the ultimate end to the story. The wait will not be quick - it would likely take several days for Schiavo's body to starve.

Yes, the judge may be forced to play God today, but only God knows what's correct for Terry Schiavo.