The Guardian today published an article titled 'Atheist doctors 'more likely to hasten death''. This is a bit of a shocking headline, as it implies that doctors without religious beliefs are actively harming their patients.
The article itself tells a different story "A patient who wanted their life prolonged at all costs in the event of a terminal illness, or did not want it prolonged, should make sure they had a doctor who was in sympathy with this." This is essentially common sense, it just so happens that atheist doctors seem more likely to put quality of life over sanctity of life (which if they were treating me, I'd be pretty happy about).
Perhaps the thing I find most worrying though is last paragraph: "The most religious doctors were significantly less likely than other doctors to have discussed options at the end of life with their patient." Not discussing these issues with a terminal patient is, in my view, a neglect of responsibility.
Given this, who would you want to treat you?
I imagine this press release from Amnesty International will shortly make the news. The Islamic idea of qisas (translates as 'retaliation') is quite literally eye-for-an-eye 'justice'.
I'm not one who's often heard praising the fairness of the UK or US legal systems, but at least we have moved on from this bronze age barbarism.
From the Protest the Pope website.
- That the Pope, as a citizen of Europe and the leader of a religion with many adherents in the UK, is of course free to enter and tour our country.
- However, as well as a religious leader, the Pope is a head of state and the state and organisation of which he is head has been responsible for:
- opposing the distribution of condoms and so increasing large families in poor countries and the spread of AIDS
- promoting segregated education
- denying abortion to even the most vulnerable women
- opposing equal rights for lesbians, gay, bisexual and transgender people
- failing to address the many cases of abuse of children within its own organisation.
- rehabilitating the holocaust denier bishop Richard Williamson and the appeaser of Hitler, the war-time Pope, Pius XII.
- The state of which the Pope is the head has also resisted signing many major human rights treaties and has formed its own treaties (‘concordats’) with many states which negatively affect the human rights of citizens of those states.
- As a head of state, the Pope is an unsuitable guest of the UK government and should not be accorded the honour and recognition of a state visit to our country.
Copyright Ed Baker