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FIRST-PERSON: Do doctors have ‘choice’?

ALEXANDRIA, La. (BP)–Choice, it seems, is the most sacred of all concepts for those that tread the left side of the political spectrum. Liberals in America assert that an individual should be autonomous, and thus afforded choice, in matters ranging from abortion and euthanasia to drug use and all forms of sexual expression.

For more than 30 years abortion advocates have insisted that a woman has a right to choose an abortion in any and all circumstances. In providing the majority opinion in Roe v. Wade, Supreme Court Justine Harry A. Blackmun wrote, “The states are not free, under the guise of protecting maternal health or potential life, to intimidate women into continuing pregnancies.”

According to Justice Blackmun, a state law that restricted abortion amounted to the intimidation of a woman’s choice. Proponents of abortion have used the judge’s sentiment to insist that a woman’s choice to have an abortion is so sacred that nothing should be allowed to interfere with it.

Pro-abortionists are so adamant concerning the sanctity of choice that they even oppose laws that would require minor children to notify their parents when seeking an abortion.

The abortion landscape in America is presently experiencing a significant shift. This trend is already hobbling unfettered abortion in American and, if it continues, could well bring the abortion industry to its knees.

The trend? More physicians are refusing to perform abortions. Doctors, it seems, are exercising their freedom of choice and, in so doing, are choosing not to perform abortions.

“No doctors want to come and work in abortion clinics,” said Genevieve Grein, the manager of Choice Medical Group in Santa Cruz, Calf., in an article posted at WorldNetDaily.com. “Guess what?” she added. “No nurses want to come and work in abortion clinics.” The San Francisco Chronicle reported, “Those who run abortion clinics, even in the large cities, say that recruiting doctors is now their most serious problem.”

Don’t expect the advocates of abortion to celebrate the physicians’ freedom of choice. The only choice proponents of abortion support is a woman’s right to choose an abortion. Here are some other quotes from the same WorldNetDaily story:

— “Unless drastic changes are made, American women will lose the right to abortion and the Supreme Court won’t be the cause of it,” said Barbara Radford, former director of the National Abortion Federation. “The reason will be that physicians can’t or won’t perform this essential service.”

— “The greatest threat to abortion rights may no longer be anti-choice judges and politicians,” said U.S. Rep. Nita Lowey of New York, “but diminished access to abortion services.”

I anticipate that eventually abortion activists will attempt to force physicians to perform abortions. Recently, when some pharmacists balked at dispensing the “morning after pill,” advocates of abortion cried foul. Many insisted that pharmacists had no choice concerning what drugs they would and would not provide, even if the drug — which can cause chemical abortions — was elective in nature.

Abortion advocates’ insistence on the sanctity of choice now represents a challenge to their very cause. If they attempt to force physicians to perform abortions, and thus infringe on the doctors’ right to choose, then they open themselves up for restrictions on the procedure with which they are so enamored.

If liberals are going to insist on the autonomy of the individual and the sanctity of choice, they must extend to physicians the option of not performing abortions. Don’t you just love it when abortion supporters get snookered by their own positions?
Kelly Boggs, whose column appears Fridays in Baptist Press, is editor of the Louisiana Baptist Message, online at www.baptistmessage.com.

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  • Kelly Boggs