The right to refuse to do your job

Trump has a new bit of evil to spring on us.

The Trump administration is considering a new “religious freedom” rule that would allow healthcare workers to refuse to treat LGBT patients. The move would also allow workers to deny care to a woman seeking an abortion or any other service they morally oppose.

Roger Severino, the head of the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Civil Rights, has actively opposed civil rights protections for minority communities. In his previous role as Director of the DeVos Center for Religion and Civil Society for the conservative Heritage Foundation, Severino spoke out against the regulations he is now tasked with upholding.

He’s head of the office of civil rights and he’s working to take away people’s civil rights. You couldn’t make this shit up.

The rule would create a new division of the civil rights office that would be tasked with ensuring health care workers are given a license to discriminate. The division would also be responsible for outreach and technical support for religious right organizations that oppose LGBT equality and abortion.

The Obama administration overturned Bush-era rules that allowed health care professionals to cite their religious beliefs to deny care. The rules were used as justification for denying fertility treatment to lesbian couples and an ambulance driver’s refusal to take a transgender woman to the hospital. The woman died before being seen by a doctor.

The proposed rule would also allow doctors and nurses to refuse treatment for HIV and AIDS.

Politico has more:

The new rules — a priority for anti-abortion groups and supporters — could come just days before Friday’s March for Life, the annual gathering in Washington marking the anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision. Republicans have typically timed votes on anti-abortion legislation to the event, the nation’s largest anti-abortion rally.

So-called conscience protections have been politically controversial since shortly after Roe v. Wade legalized abortion in 1973.

The Obama administration in 2011 rewrote a series of Bush-era protections designed to protect the moral and religious beliefs of health care workers. Opponents of the Bush rules argue that they were too broad and could have allowed workers to opt out of end-of-life care, providing birth control and treatment for HIV and AIDS. For instance, some workers cited their moral objections when denying fertility treatment to lesbian couples or not providing ambulance transportation to a pregnant woman seeking an abortion.

But supporters of the conscience protections say the Obama administration left objecting workers out to dry, liable to be fired for refusing to assist in abortions.

“To be forced under pain of losing one’s job is just outrageous,” Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.), co-chairman of the Bipartisan Congressional Pro-Life Caucus, said last week. President Trump is “now looking to remedy that through the HHS mechanism — hasn’t happened yet, but it will.”

To be forced to do your job on pain of losing said job is outrageous? Really? I think it’s pretty standard. If you refuse to do your job, you’re going to be told to go find a different one, because your employer is looking for someone who will in fact do the job. That’s what “job” means in that context. If a person doesn’t want to be involved in abortions, then that person should not seek a job that involves abortions. I don’t want to go down the mines, so I don’t seek employment down the mines. It’s quite an easy principle to grasp, I think.

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