Canadian MP introduces protection of conscience bill

Bill C-268 (2016)  Protection of Freedom of Conscience Act

Sean Murphy*

Conservative Member of Parliament Kelly Block has introduced a bill that would make it a crime to coerce medical or nurse practitioners or other health professionals to take part, directly or indirectly, in “medical assistance in dying.” The preamble of the bill makes clear that it is intended as a protection of conscience measure.

The text of the bill is much the same as a bill proposed by MP Mark Warawa in 2016.

“Medical assistance in dying” means euthanasia and assisted suicide provided by physicians or nurse practitioners. Since it is considered medical treatment in Canada, it falls within provincial jurisdiction over health care. Similarly, provinces have primary jurisdiction over human rights like freedom of conscience. Thus, the federal government has been easily able to refuse amendments like this on the grounds that they unconstitutionally trespass on provincial jursidiction.

The federal government has constitutional jursidiction in criminal law and could make it a crime to compel someone to be a party to homicide and suicide. Since “medical assistance in dying” is non-culpable homicide and non-cuplpable assisted suicide, such a law would provide protection for health care professionals unwilling to be parties to killing their patients or helping them commit suicide, without intruding upon provincial jurisdiction.

The Protection of Conscience Project has repeatedly made this suggestion to Canadian parliamentarians, but its submissions have been ignored.

It is remarkable that the Canadian government clearly believes it is acceptable to compel citizens to become parties to homicide — killing other people — and punish them if they refuse. It is, perhaps, even more remarkable that Canadians are unwilling to talk openly about this.

Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia: pharmacists must also have the right to conscientious objection

Life Institute Blog
Reproduced with permission

Bernadette Flood

Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia: pharmacists must also have the right to conscientious objection

In jurisdictions where euthanasia and/or assisted suicide is legal, experience shows there are profound implications for pharmacy practice.1 Little attention in the current euthanasia debate has been paid to the role of Irish pharmacists. Pharmacists are employed  in the Irish healthcare system in a variety of locations: hospital, long term care, care of vulnerable populations, community, academia/research, education, industry, palliative care/hospice care, legislation, policy, drug information, HIQA etc. All may be challenged professionally and personally if euthanasia and assisted suicide are introduced. . . . continue reading

House committee defeats bill to allow ‘conscience’ refusal to provide or pay for medical services

Arkansas Times

Max Brantely

The House Public Health Committee today declined to endorse SB 289 which allows a medical practitioner, healthcare institution, or health insurance payer not to participate in a healthcare service that violates their conscience.

The vote was 8 for to 10 against, with Rep. Jim Dotson not voting and Chair Jack Ladyman abstaining.

An extensive presentation for the bill was followed by abbreviated public testimony, but it included heavyweight opposition from a former Supreme Court justice, UAMS and the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce.

Testimony included support from Surgeon General Gregory Bledsoe, speaking individually, who opposed the legislation in 2017. Since then, he said, circumstances have changed. Bledsoe, a candidate for lieutenant governor, said he saw no problem needing a solution then. Now, he said, said he feared federal intervention to force providers to do procedures they oppose. . . continue reading

When Amazon Erased My Book

First Things

Ryan T. Anderson

When Amazon Erased My Book

My book When Harry Became Sally: Responding to the Transgender Moment was released exactly three years ago. It was attacked twice on the New York Times op-ed page. The Washington Post ran a hit piece on it that was riddled with errors. It was obvious the critics hadn’t read the book. But they were threatened by it and wanted to discredit it lest anyone pick it up and learn from it.

Now, three years after publication, in the same week that the House of Representatives plans to ram through the Equality Act—a radical transgender bill amending the Civil Rights Act of 1964—Amazon has erased my book opposing gender ideology from its cyber shelves.

The people who did read the book discovered that it is an accurate and accessible presentation of the scientific, medical, philosophical, and legal debates surrounding the trans phenomenon. Yes, it advances an argument against transgender ideology from a viewpoint. But it doesn’t get any facts wrong, and it doesn’t engage in heated rhetoric. 

Moreover, it was praised by experts: the former psychiatrist-in-chief at Johns Hopkins Hospital, a longtime psychology professor at NYU, a professor of medical ethics at Columbia Medical School, a professor of psychological and brain sciences at Boston University, a professor of neurobiology at the University of Utah, a distinguished professor at Harvard Law School, an eminent legal philosopher at Oxford, and a professor of jurisprudence at Princeton. . . [Full text]

A Russian woman wants 105 surrogate babies – and has the money to pay for them

BioEdge

Michael Cook

The Russian media has been abuzz with the news that a 23-year-old woman from Moscow named Christina Ozturk and her husband have embarked upon the ambitious project of having 105 of their own biological children. They already have 11 in their household – one which Christina had herself, and 10 in the last two years with surrogate mothers.

Mrs Ozturk met her 56-year-old husband, Galip, a Turkish businessman living in Georgia, at a resort in Batumi, where there is a well-established surrogacy industry. Each child costs about 8,000 Euros, but Mr Ozturk, who owns a chain of hotels, says that he can handle it easily. The Turkish media describes him as a billionaire, although he denies this. The project seems to have been his idea. . . [Full Text]