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Attorney will speak at Northcliffe Baptist about constitutional liberties

David C. Gibbs was the pro-bono attorney for Terri Schiavo’s parents for three years.
David C. Gibbs was the pro-bono attorney for Terri Schiavo’s parents for three years.
Published Apr. 8, 2015

SPRINGHILL — Attorney David C. Gibbs has been actively defending the rights and freedoms of people throughout the United States since 1993. On April 19, Northcliffe Baptist Church will host Gibbs at each of its three services in hopes of educating people regarding their constitutional liberties.

Gibbs is perhaps best known for his three-year, pro-bono representation of the parents of Terri Schiavo in a controversial case that ended in March 2005 when a Pasco-Pinellas circuit judge in Clearwater ordered a feeding tube permanently removed from the disabled 41-year-old woman, resulting in her death.

Michael Schiavo, the woman's husband and legal guardian, had battled the parents in court for nearly a decade, arguing that his wife could never recover and had a right to die, while the parents argued that she could recover and should have the right to live.

The case made history, going before the U.S. Supreme Court twice in 10 days. But no federal court would get involved.

"I was disappointed; the courts got it wrong," Gibbs said. "Our most fundamental right is certainly the right to life."

Gibbs' book on the case, Fighting for Dear Life: The Untold Story of Terri Schiavo and What it Means for All of Us, was published in 2006.

While Gibbs was unable to prevail in the Schiavo case, it was, he said, in large part the inspiration for him to launch a nonprofit ministry in 2012. The National Center for Life and Liberty defends life and liberty freedoms nationwide and is supported by churches and individuals, enabling it to offer its services for free.

With offices in St. Petersburg, Dallas and Washington, D.C., the center represents and educates people regarding life values, constitutional values, church liberty, Christian education, homeschool education, parental rights, American policy and international liberty.

The organization's motto: "If it's wrong, fight it. If it's right, fight for it."

"My world with the NCLL really falls into three categories," Gibbs said. "I'm a trial attorney, and I defend cases and constitutional issues across America. I then also work with policy-makers in Tallahassee and Washington, D.C. And I try to be a voice in the culture."

Gibbs uses his voice over the radio, in newspaper interviews and on television as a legal expert on constitutional rights on FOX News. As he will do next weekend, he frequently speaks in church settings and at conferences. He has authored five books.

"We see what is going on in our society, and it is imperative that the good people of our nation, and certainly throughout Florida, recognize that they do have more rights than they realize, and it's important that we speak up and defend those rights," Gibbs said.

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At Northcliffe, Gibbs plans to use the morning services to encourage the church and update those attending on legal issues. The topic for the 6 p.m. service will be "The Legal Assault on Faith and Family in Florida."

"We're going to be talking to the public at large about the state of our nation and what is going on in Washington, in Tallahassee, in the courts and most importantly what they can do to get involved," Gibbs said.

Pastor Jerry Waugh said he asked Gibbs to return for the evening service so people who may attend other churches in the morning can attend that service.

"There is much misinformation out there," Waugh said. "We are giving up our rights because we do not have the right information. I want the faith and family community of Hernando County to know our rights, and attorney Gibbs, who has spoken before the Supreme Court, is the person who can provide us with the helpful information we need."

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