Mark DanielsMark Daniels's Weblog
- 2006 Feb 15
Mary Rettig of AgapePress reports that recent changes to the Hippocratic Oath may cause its tenets to render harm to medical patients. Rettig quotes Wesley Smith, a senior fellow of The Discovery Institute, as saying that prohibitions against killing patients, or having sex with them, have been lifted in recent revisions of the Oath, which predates by centuries the birth of Christ.
Perhaps most troubling, in Smith's opinion, is that the once active requirements or pledges of the Hippocratic Oath are being replaced by "very vague and passive assertions --for example, to always treat a patient with dignity." Wesley correctly asserts that, if a physician considers euthanasia to be "dignified," then an argument can be made that the very oath that eschews doing harm...no longer prohibits the taking of a life.
Disturbing stuff, indeed...but here's another perspective. For those who see science (medicine) and religion as antonymic, and so have already rejected the precepts of Biblical wisdom, I ask you: what is your "plumb line" for the future of society?
If Godly standards are inappropriate, and timeless worldly statutes no longer apply, then what is to be the arbiter of right and wrong? Mere tolerance, or hyper-libertarianism?
In a society that seems hellbent (pun intended) on replacing wisdom with knowledge and esoteric experience…it seems we are no longer willing to learn from our mistakes…and then are--in the words of the naturalist philosopher--doomed to repeat them.