Friday, December 19, 2008

Be careful what you wish for!

Bush's "right of conscience" rule would allow those working in health-related facilities that receive federal funds to refuse treatment based on moral, rather than scientific, grounds.

Apparently, the intent of this rule is to protect those apposed to contraception and abortion from having to participate in procedures that they consider immoral.

But this would seem to cover
  • the Jehovah's Witness who refuses to facilitate blood transfusions or organ transplants
  • the Christian Scientist who regards anything but prayer therapy to be immoral
  • The Scientologist who finds fault with most mental health treatments
  • the euthanasia-ist who objects to administering life-sustaining treatment to terminally ill patients
  • the vegan working in the hospital cafeteria!
There are people who think that it's morally problematic for those in industrialized nations to expend so many resources on having their own biological children given global poverty and overpopulation. There are racial purists who think it is wrong to bring children of mixed race into the world. By the same standards, they would be justified in refusing fertility treatments, prenatal care, etc.

The lesson is, when you want moral views to get special consideration, unless you are going to dictate which moral views get special consideration, you set yourself up for giving special consideration to views that you don't agree with.

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