A Mother's Dying Wish Should Prevail


Imagine how you might feel if your sister called you and told you that she and her son were coming to live in Payson.

She had been living in a town where the pollution was so bad, they could hardly breathe. The environment was sure to destroy any chance her child might have for a healthy future. You know the danger is real because you once lived there yourself.

Your sister tells you that this move is the greatest wish she could ever make for her child.

Then one night, you hear a weak knock at your front door and discover your sister, frozen and dying on the porch. Her car broke down during the journey and she used the last bit of her life to deliver her son to your home.

Elian Gonzalez' mother sacrificed everything she had to give her son a new life in America.

It's easy to pass judgment on Elian's Miami relatives and decide the boy should be sent home to live with his father. But to Elian's family living in America, this was a mother's last wish and they passionately feel it should be honored.

What if it were your grandchild?

No doubt, there are hundreds of grandparents in the Rim country who would fight to keep a child safe, in a place that would allow him to live and grow as his mother wished.

It is a shame that Elian is being used as a pawn in a political power game. Due in part to photographs and sympathy statements being distributed by Castro's propaganda machine, opinion polls indicate that the majority of Americans feel Elian should be sent back home to Cuba.

But it's not the home his mother wanted him to have. The issue has been a question of rights -- the rights of the divorced father versus the rights of the Miami relatives.

We believe a mother's final wishes for her child are rights that take precedence and should not die along with her.

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