That’s right. Not “impossible.” Impermissible.
We’ve seen how far faith gets you when you want to defy the laws of physics or reproduce miracles. That would be “not very.” However, it appears to get you much, much further when all you want to violate is basic human decency, as Ophelia has spent a good chunk of the day documenting.
Ohhhhhh shit, how did I miss this – the House passed a bill in October that “makes it legal for hospitals to deny abortions to pregnant women with life-threatening conditions.”
Remember Thomas Olmsted, bishop of Phoenix? Who stripped St Joseph’s Hospital of its Catholic status because it aborted a fetus that was doomed in any case, in order to save the mother (who has four small children)? Remember the ACLU letter to the Feds urging them to enforce the law – the law that says hospitals can’t deny patients life-saving procedures?
As she points out, passed by the House is not the same thing as law, but it’s a damned important step along the way. and what are we stepping toward?
More on the Let Women Die bill.
An even more controversial aspect of the bill would allow hospitals that are morally opposed to abortion, such as Catholic institutions, to do nothing for a woman who requires an emergency abortion procedure to save her life. Current law requires that hospitals give patients in life-threatening situations whatever care they need, regardless of the patient’s financial situation, but the Protect Life Act would make a hospital’s obligation to provide care in medical emergencies secondary to its refusal to provide abortions.
Notice that it’s hospitals. Not individual doctors or nurses (which would be more than bad enough) but whole hospitals. Imagine being a pregnant woman with skyrocketing blood pressure who has the bad fortune to be at a hospital that likes to refuse to do abortions. Oh darn, get off the gurney and go find another hospital…if you can live that long.
She’s also documented that the bishop who has championed this measure not only doesn’t see this as an issue of competing compelling interests…
He’s pissed off that the president of CHW told him that this is a complex matter on which the best minds disagree – not, as one might hope, because he thinks there should be no disagreement on whether or not a pregnant woman should be allowed to die along with her fetus rather than prevented from dying at the expense of her fetus, but because he is The Bishop.
In effect, you would have me believe that we will merely have to agree to disagree. But this resolution is unacceptable because it disregards my authority and responsibility to interpret the moral law and to teach the Catholic faith as a Successor of the Apostles.
His responsibility, that is, to order doctors to let a woman die. Because he is a Successor of the Apostles.
Yes, his faith tells him that not only does he have some right to let a woman die, but he has a responsibility to do just that, even when the only thing it changes is that a woman dies who wouldn’t have without an abortion. Darn that pesky Eve all to heck.
But faith is such a good thing, right?
Keep an eye on Ophelia’s blog. There will be plenty more on this unless I miss my mark.