On Obama (maybe) overturning the ‘conscience rule’

This just in my inbox, courtesy of the far-right, anti-choice, anti-marriage, anti-family “American Family Association”:

According to several news agencies, President Barack Obama will rescind the “conscience rule” that protects health workers who refuse to participate in abortions or other medical procedures that go against their moral and religious beliefs. If the rule is rescinded, doctors, nurses and other health care workers could lose their jobs or be punished professionally for adhering to their sincerely held religious convictions. Obama’s proposal would take away their religious freedom…

No. It would take away their option to deny medical care to which their patients have a legal right, on the basis of their personal convictions.

Let me be the first to acknowledge that every job is not for everyone.  I, for instance, would never want to work in a far-right, anti-choice, anti-marriage, anti-family organization like AFA. However, in the event hell freezes over and if I did apply for a job there, should I be allowed to opt out of whatever aspects of that job are objectionable to my religious beliefs? Or should I maybe find another job for which I’m better suited for the tasks? I think the latter.

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2 Responses to “On Obama (maybe) overturning the ‘conscience rule’”

  1. Alasdair Says:

    Interesting that you can so comfortably conflate refusal to take part in a specific medical treatment with refusal to allow the patient to have the medical treatment …

    That’s sorta like saying that when you refuse to allow a fat person to eat the food off *your* plate without asking politely, you are starving that person to death …

    Both assertions are equivalently absurd …

    On a more theological note, what would Our Savour have said about someone who makes the flat statement “I, for instance, would never want to work in a far-right, anti-choice, anti-marriage, anti-family organization like AFA.” ?

    I like to think that He might have mentioned something about working among the sinners rather than staying safely amongst the believers …

    Just a thought …

  2. Tom Ryberg Says:

    Interesting that you can so comfortably conflate refusal to take part in a specific medical treatment with refusal to allow the patient to have the medical treatment …

    I would have less of a problem with the “conscience rule” if there were a guarantee that the patient would still receive the exact treatment by another professional, right then and there. But medical care needs to put the patient first, according to his/her needed treatment – within the scope of the law, of course – first and foremost.

    As to your second point, I agree that Christ calls us to the margins, rather than toward our personal comfort zones. Wherever Christ calls me, even if to the AFA, I pray that I’ll have the discernment and willing spirit to follow. But Jesus never promised that we would necessarily want it. ;)


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