Healthcare and Conscience

world | Jan 08, 2009 | By Stephanie Block

Orwellian Newspeak is doing well. There’s a Bush administration proposal to issue an executive directive that would protect pro-life health care providers from discrimination for refusal to perform or assist in abortions or sterilizations, embryonic stem cell research activity, or any other morally objectionable activity. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, however, complains the proposal would overturn “40 years of civil rights law prohibiting job discrimination based on religion.”

Come again?

According to the Commission, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 already prohibits employment discrimination based on religion or personal moral convictions. But…pharmaceutical chains, for instance, might be stuck with employees who refused to fill prescriptions for abortifacient contraceptives. A “freedom of conscience” ruling might exempt Catholic hospitals from a Connecticut law requiring hospitals to provide rape victims with information about emergency contraception – that is, chemical abortions.
Well, yes, that would seem to be the idea, wouldn’t it?

The next objection is that while President-elect Barack Obama could – and he’s said that he would – rescind such a directive, the process could take several months, as federal law requires a counter rule and public comment. It would “set the stage for an abortion controversy in the early months of Barack Obama's administration,” wrote the LA Times.

Obviously, that would be uncomfortable for the Obama administration and Hillary Clinton, slated to be Secretary of State, has introduced legislation of her own, called the “Protecting Patients and Health Care Act,” to block the regulation. Stay tuned.

Stephanie Block is the editor of Los Pequenos - a New Mexico-based publication. Her columns are made possible by the sponsorship of generous individuals who believe information about the development and dissemination of progressive ideology needs to be more widely understood. Please fell free to share -- acknowledging authorship -- these articles with others. If you would like more frequent publication of Stephanie Block's work, tax-deductible donations can be sent to: Catholic Media Coalition - PO Box 427 Great Cacapon, WV 25422 Attn: Progressive Watch

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