Or so the California Supreme Court seems to be saying with their latest ruling. A lesbian went to a fertility specialist to try to get pregnant. The two Christian doctors treated her with fertility drugs, and told her how to artificially inseminate herself at home. They told her that inseminating her themselves would violate their religious beliefs. So, they referred her to another doctor, who inseminated her, and she now has three children. Happy ending, right? Nope. According to the woman, this was discrimination (of course). And the Supreme Court agreed. Shocka.
Justice Joyce Kennard wrote that two Christian fertility doctors who refused to artificially inseminate a lesbian have neither a free speech right nor a religious exemption from the state’s law, which “imposes on business establishments certain antidiscrimination obligations.”
In the lawsuit that led to the ruling, Guadalupe Benitez, 36, of Oceanside said that the doctors treated her with fertility drugs and instructed her how to inseminate herself at home but told her their beliefs prevented them from inseminating her. One of the doctors referred her to another fertility specialist without moral objections, and Benitez has since given birth to three children.
Nevertheless, Benitez in 2001 sued the Vista-based North Coast Women’s Care Medical Group. She and her lawyers successfully argued that a state law prohibiting businesses from discriminating based on sexual orientation applies to doctors.
The law was originally designed to prevent hotels, restaurants and other public services from refusing to serve patrons because of their race. The Legislature has since expanded it to cover characteristics such as age and sexual orientation.
“It was an awful thing to go through,” Benitez said. “It was very painful – the fact that you have someone telling you they will not help you because of who you are, that they will deny your right to be a mother and have a family.”
Benitez has given birth to three children through artificial insemination – Gabriel, 6, and twin daughters, Sophia and Shane, who turn 3 this weekend. She is raising them in Oceanside with her longtime partner, Joanne Clark.
Jennifer Pizer, Benitez’s attorney, said that the ruling was “a victory for public health” and that she expected it to have nationwide influence.
“It was clear and emphatic that discrimination has no place in doctors’ offices,” Pizer said.
The ruling was unanimous and a succinct 18 pages, a contrast to the state Supreme Court’s 4-3 schism in May legalizing marriage between same-sex couples.
Jeez. The way these people are carrying on, you’d think that these doctors threw Benitez out screaming, “NO HOMOS ALLOWED!!!” rather than do everything they could to help her without going against their religious beliefs. And how funny is it that Muslims are allowed to get anything they want when it comes to their religious beliefs, but oh no, not the Christians. The lawyer representing the Christian doctors, though, hit the nail on the head with this one:
“The Supreme Court’s desire to promote the homosexual lifestyle at the risk of infringing upon the First Amendment right to free exercise of religion is what the public needs to learn about,” said Tyler, who leads the nonprofit Advocates for Faith and Freedom in Murrieta, Calif.
So I guess the Supreme Court feels that free citizens should be forced to provide services to anyone, no matter what. At what point is someone allowed to turn someone away based on moral objections? If they’re a crack dealer? A child molestor? A rapist? A murderer? These doctors did all they could to help this woman, and when they had gone as far as they felt they could go, they referred her to another doctor and the woman got the result she wanted: children. It should’ve been the end of the story. But no. The woman still sued, and why? Because her poor little feewings got hurt? This is not a legitimate case of discrimination. The Christian doctors didn’t refuse all treatment, and they didn’t even refuse to help her. They gave her fertility treatments and even instructed the woman on how to artificially inseminate herself at home. The treatment wasn’t even something the doctors needed to do! She could have done it herself! So the doctors referred her elsewhere. But like I said, the way this woman is carrying on you’d think they branded her a dirty queer and told her she didn’t deserve children, not do everything they could to help her achieve her goal.
And no one is required to go to a certain doctor. It isn’t as if her life depended on these two doctors giving her the artificial insemination. She’s free to go to any doctor she likes. If the Christian doctors had refused to treat her at all on the basis of her homosexuality, then I’d be all for a lawsuit. That is discrimination. But the doctors treated her. That’s the big “but”. So how is this even a case? I guess the California Supreme Court feels that this woman’s hurt feelings over being — GASP!! — treated by Christian doctors and referred to another doctor and then getting what she wants takes precedence over religious freedom. Isn’t this all kind of much ado about nothing?
I mean, come on. At what point do we say enough? If we stand for nothing, we’ll fall for anything. And eventually, we need to take a stand.
Hat Tip: Gabriel Malor at Ace of Spades