BLOGThe Weekly Digest: 9-28-16

By James Arnold Posted on: | September 28, 2016
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On to the news.

 

Another Note about Age and Consent

 

Yesterday, we wrote about both the first time a physician legally killed a child (in Belgium) and the rise of "genetic sexual attraction" (read: incest).

Today, another brief hypothetical argument at the intersection of those two discussions:

  1. Belgium, by affirming the "right" of a child to legally "choose to die" via physician-prescribed means, agrees that a child is legally capable of making life-long decisions.
  2. As we noted, Belgium does not allow children under the age of 18 to drink spirits, drive a car, prostitute themselves, or participate in other potentially life-changing activities, such as getting married and voting.
  3. When we looked at "genetic sexual attraction," Carl Trueman noted that Obergefell v. Hodges hinges on the notion that consent is the primary sexual ethic.
  4. If Belgium grants the right of minors to consent to ask a physician to kill them, then it would be logically consistent to allow a child to participate in a sexual relationship with anybody.

To conclude the argument: If you oppose pedophilia, you should have a serious opposition to physicians legally killing children just because they "consented" to the action. The two positions both hinge on the ability of a child to consent to an action that has life-long ramifications (in the event of a physician killing the child, immediately life-long). Accept one, and you must consistently accept the other.

 
Sorry, Bioethicists: You Shouldn't Force Doctors to Perform Abortions"

Just read the opening statement in this article:

"In Canada, two bioethicists have proposed that doctors be forced to perform abortions in hospital even if it's against their will, triggering a howl of protests from pro-life advocates who called the proposal 'ridiculous.'"

Sometimes when reports like this come in, we learn later that the matter at hand was exaggerated. So let's read what the bioethicists actually said:

"Doctors must put patients' interests ahead of their own integrity."

Woah. That's not exactly subtle.

Here's a summary of the thrust of their argument, in the section we quoted just a moment ago:

  • Religious beliefs do not make medical doctors better at their jobs.
  • Some religious beliefs "can have a highly detrimental effect" on medical practice.
  • Therefore, doctors (to be good doctors) must put medical practice before their personal moral integrity.

Aside from the religious discrimination (which is not really hidden at all), any sort of argument here puts the responsibility of measuring "patients' interests" in the hands of whatever governmental body in charge of issuing conscience protections (in this case, the Canadian government). But, as history (and common sense) has shown, giving the state the power to decide conscience issues doesn't bode well.

In fact, the medical community benefits from a plurality of viewpoints, including that of religious folks.

Here's the question we should all be asking these bioethicists: Do we really want doctors who do not consider right and wrong?


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James Arnold

News and Research Manager

James Arnold manages and edits the Alliance Alert, a daily repository of news in all forms—written, spoken, or in video format.

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