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November 27, 2004

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Laura Gallagher

I also am all for allowing a woman a choice. But I look at your post and I think this is a matter of conflicts of rights. The woman is not the only person who has choices in her life. The doctors do, too. I expect this is more so that a state can't force say, a Catholic hospital, to help someone get an abortion, something that TO THEM is morally repugnant and should have no part of health care. They have rights and choices, too.

Raoul Djukanovic

where is the conflict of rights, laura? you're equating rights with the right to moral preferences, which isn't the same thing at all, as far as i can see. doctors can choose not to treat a patient, i suppose, but only if the state can demand that someone exists to provide the service. otherwise what happens to the choice you claim to want to allow a woman?

claudia

Laura -- from the NYT:

Current federal law, aimed at protecting Roman Catholic doctors, provides such "conscience protection" to doctors who do not want to undergo abortion training. The new language would expand that protection to all health care providers, including hospitals, doctors, clinics and insurers.

If you are interested, you can find the article here.

I find this a worrisome trend.

I believe that doctors ultimately should have their patients' best interests in mind, not their own moral conscience. If their moral objections are too great, then they ought to look into a profession that doesn't confront them with such dilemmata. (Of course, to them, it might not be a dilemma, but you get my gist, no?)

An insurer can decide that they don't want to pay for an abortion? This is not an issue a company ought to decide. It should be regulated by law. (It is in Germany.)

Also, note that I find the trend worrisome. In itself, this provision could be sensible. (I don't think it is but I can see how the argument can be made.) But as a stepping stone towards overturning Roe v. Wade, I find it very scary indeed.

Gareth Wilson

"I believe that doctors ultimately should have their patients' best interests in mind, not their own moral conscience."

That's an interesting statement. By what means, other than their moral conscience, can a doctor decide what's in their patient's best interests? Or even which particular clump of cells qualifies as their patient?

Kevin

Hmmm. So let me see if I've got this right. The non-existent "right" to kill an unborn child supercedes a doctor or charitable organizations right to follow their conscience or dictates of their religion. What about the freedom to practice the religion of your choice without government interference, a true and real right recognized by the Constitution?

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