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Obit Reax

Captain’s Quarters [1] has up a letter form Mike Zimbleman, the brohter of Cory, the guy whose obit granced this space and several others around the ‘Sphere, yesterday.

Zimbleman, in adressing the comments that obit has been getting, from both bloggers and their readers, says, in part:

"I am not pleased with my brother's obituary but at least I know that it was written by a family member who had endured the stress of three weeks watching him die from the effects of brain damage from a probable massive heart attack, while working with doctors to attempt to find some way to save his life. Generally in situations like this an obituary would be tempered by the dispassionate support of a funeral director. In this instance such support was not present (due to choices made by his immediate family on processes following his death) and the obituary as written came directly out of a state of shock and grief."

I wrote back to the Captain:


“I submit to you that in such a state, a person will revert to their core beleifs… It’s as Marshall Foche is famously quoted… “there are no atheists in foxholes.”

As such, while I feel for the family, I’m forced to conclude that their core beliefs are as described, and as such are worthy of the scorn they’ve been getting. You say freedom of speech doesn’t mean freedom from criticism. You’re quite right. By the same token, however, is another,matter decided. The idea that we should not speak ill of the dead, if followed htorugh, requires us to lie, which I will not do; Lies are, after all, how nonsense like what was in that obit get printed… and how lies like what that obit contained, are beleived… in the first place, and I won’t be a party to it. You may find worth noting that this is a position I’ve taken some heat for in the past, as you’ll see.” [2]

Update: (Fixed EM drop tag, plus:)
Got a note back from Ed, explaining that the points I’d made, he’d already thought of; that’s why he didn’t pull the post. Reasonable fellow, that Ed.