The Ohio legislature on Thursday, July 1, passed a state budget containing a provision that appears to protect medical service employees and providers should they refuse to perform abortions or sex-change operations.
But that’s only half of the story.
The budget bill is called H.B. 110, is over 1,000 tedious pages long (believe me, I spent hours scrolling through it), and as Raymond Wolfe of LifeSiteNews reports, contains a provision that protects “healthcare providers from having to commit abortions, transgender surgeries, or other practices that violate their beliefs.”
The pertinent clause of the bill reads:
Notwithstanding any conflicting provision of the Revised Code, a medical practitioner, health care institution, or health care payer has the freedom to decline to perform, participate in, or pay for any health care service which violates the practitioner’s, institution’s, or payer’s conscience as informed by the moral, ethical, or religious beliefs or principles held by the practitioner, institution, or payer.
And Wolfe adds:
’Exercise of the right of conscience is limited to conscience-based objections to a particular health care service,’ HB 110 continues.
So far, so good -- and of particular significance, considering the multiple attacks on conscience and free association seen a few states away in Colorado, where the Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop, has been attacked a second time for refusing to accept business - this time from a transgender person who demanded Phillips make a birthday cake celebrating a so-called "sex-change".
So let’s look at this first aspect of the new Ohio bill, see it in the context of Masterpiece, and see why the Ohio move is significant – for good and bad reasons.
First, no one has a right to demand the services of another person, regardless of how much he or she wants to pay, regardless of the “reasons.” It might be tough for US leftists to accept, but the US Constitution now contains in it the Thirteenth Amendment, which not only prohibits slavery, it prohibits INVOLUNTARY SERVITUDE. Forcing someone who doesn’t want to SERVE YOU, to do PRECISELY THAT is, by definition, INVOLUNTARY SERVITUDE, regardless of the payment one might offer.
If the service is coerced, or done upon threat of legal action, that’s not voluntary.
As a result, this new provision should be unnecessary.
The problem is that states like Colorado infringe on the Thirteenth Amendment with their “anti-discrimination” statutes, and so does the U.S. government.
The heart of that problem lies in a 1946 Supreme Court ruling in what was called “Marsh v. Alabama,” a case in which a woman trespassed on a company campus to hand out religious documents. The company called the cops to have her removed. She claimed it was her right to hand out fliers, and – shocker -- the FDR-dominated court ruled that the company property was “the public square,” and the company could not exclude her.
This destroyed the concept of private property in the U.S. and turned it into government-defined “public” property. But public property is that on which tax money is spent, while private property is maintained and owned by private interests.
After the “Marsh” ruling, the U.S. government passed the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which contained a “public accommodations” portion in it that actually undercut the concept of civil rights and instituted federally-enforced involuntary servitude, forcing business owners to have to serve everyone.
Said force being the definition of "involuntary."
As I have noted for MRCTV, peaceful property control and freedom of association are essential for civilization to function. This includes the power to deny association. If a business owner wants to deny you services based on your lack of clothing or hygiene when you walk into his or her private establishment, should he or she not be free to do so? If one has a party, can one deny entry to people who aren’t invited? If one is in the dating market, can one deny an unwanted offer to go to dinner?
As much as many contemporary Americans don’t like to admit it, the act of “discrimination” is essential for life. It is the process of distinguishing between two or more choices. All humans and animals engage in the activity as a matter of survival. If one cannot deny service to another, then one is an involuntary servant, and the matter of monetary compensation is irrelevant.
So this aspect of the Ohio bill should not be necessary, but, given the scant number of politicians who understand the distinction between private and public property, free association, and the power of markets to reveal preferences of peaceful people, perhaps this move in Ohio will act as protection against people trying to hobble doctors and nurses who abide by their beliefs.
But there’s a downside to this bill, which is that it also infringes on private contract between medical business owners and potential employees. As much as one might not like to see doctors engaging in the practice of “transitioning” people from one gender to another, and as much as that appears to breach the Hippocratic Oath, if the owner of a medical business wants to hire people who will agree to perform such “services,” he or she has a right to do so, and the employee can accept or deny the offer. Just like the employee can demand certain concessions from the employer during the job negotiation process, so should the employer be able accept or deny the employee's preferences. If the participants don’t agree, they can turn away and form contracts with others.
This does not apply to murder-for-hire, i.e. abortion.
If one believes the U.S. Constitution is the rulebook for the nation, then the Fourteenth Amendment mandates that any state with laws supposedly “protecting” people from violence must protect “equally” all human beings.
That means fetuses, which are, by definition, both human and being.
So the Ohio bill is a mixed bag. It shouldn’t be necessary, but few people acknowledge the Constitution that state, local, and federal politicians swear to uphold.
This is certainly the case for Ohio Governor Mike DeWine (R), who, in signing the new bill, spouted a bunch of hot air about doctors being free to make choices.
As Wolfe reports:
’In the real world, most of those rights are not only recognized and exercised by medical professionals, but they’re being accepted by other medical professionals,’ the governor said, according to Cleveland.com. ‘That is the way the world generally works. This is basically put in statute and codified.’
Which contradicts DeWine’s own authoritarian COVID-19 lockdowns mandates, applied to medical establishments and non-medical businesses.
But who would want to accuse DeWine of hypocrisy when he’s busy posturing about “medical freedom”?
Given that 1,000 page monstrosity of a bill, Ohio has a long way to go before it can claim anything close to freedom for its residents. But this bill is a start.
Even if Mike DeWine doesn’t seem to understand that he mocks himself by heralding its passage.