n International Journal for Religious Freedom - Freedom of conscience, medical practitioners and abortion in South Africa
|Article Title||Freedom of conscience, medical practitioners and abortion in South Africa|
|© Publisher:||International Institute for Religious Freedom|
|Journal||International Journal for Religious Freedom|
|Affiliations||1 University of the Free State|
|Publication Date||Jan 2011|
|Pages||75 - 85|
|Keyword(s)||Abortion, Conscientious objection, Freedom of religion, Medical ethics, Reasonable accommodation and Religious rights|
While the South African Constitution, along with most modern standards of human rights, recognises the right to freedom of conscience, there is in reality a concern that medical practitioners in South Africa who strongly believe in the sanctity of the unborn, might be pressurised to act against their beliefs (the same probably applies in many other societies perceived as being democratic and pluralist). Consequently, this article argues for the protection of the medical practitioner's right to conscientious objection to participating in abortions. In this regard, special emphasis is placed on the complexity and gravity of views on the nature of the unborn. This argument, together with some critical thought on the place and nature of religion in a pluralist and democratic society, serves as a strong motivation for the accommodation of those medical practitioners who strongly believe in the unborn as being human (or at least as something worthy of protection).
Article metrics loading...