Maybe the doctors with the strong objections should consider a niche that won’t challenge their moral views.
Maybe doctors with strong pro-choice views, those unable to distinguish between what constitutes medical care versus what is a political statement ought to consider a niche that doesn’t challenge good medicine? (Recall the words of Dr. Gutowski: “So with doctors, we are human beings, we get influenced by political things just like everybody else, and so we forget our science–that the fetus is a genetically distinct individual. We as scientists should be dealing with the science, not the politics–but it takes us a while to really think the whole thing through.”)
Rebecca adds: Of course, this isn’t about access to information – if the real concern were that women whose doctors are pro-life might not be able to find an abortionist, why not just let abortion advocacy groups put big ads in the yellow pages, magazines, city buses and so on (you know, as is already the case. And I have yet to meet a woman who decided against abortion on the grounds that it was just to hard to track down a provider, darn it.)
No, it’s not about access, it’s about power. Political candidates are muzzled all the time about abortion: you can vote your conscience and believe as you wish, as long as you toe the line about abortion. Protestors are censored about abortion: you have the right to free speech, as long as you’re nowhere near an abortion clinic. Now doctors are being put up against a wall: you should use your clinical judgement, and the Hippocratic Oath, to govern your behaviour, unless it involves abortion. Enough.
But if we’re going to compel pro-life doctors to hand out contact info for abortion clinics, can we simultaneously compel abortion clinics to hand out info about the implications of abortion for mental health, breast cancer, and future child-bearing? Or would it be inappropriately political to require doctors to give their patients the facts they really need to give informed consent?