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UK Doctor Sacked For Blasphemy

In the UK, the National Health Service has thrown out a doctor: [1]

A doctor has been “sacked” as a medical assessor for a government department after refusing to renounce his Christian belief that gender is determined at birth, the Sunday Telegraph can reveal.

Dr David Mackereth has worked for 26 years as an NHS doctor but was told he could not be employed as a Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) [2]disability assessor if he refused to identify patients as being of a sex that they did not see themselves as.

The 55-year-old father of four believes sex is genetic and biological, so established at birth.

Wait a minute. Holding the view that people are born male or female is now a theological belief? Do you see how radical this is? Here’s the theology angle: this doctor was fired because he blasphemed against the militant new religion.


[The doctor] said: “Firstly, we are not allowed to say what we believe. Secondly, as my case shows, we are not allowed to think what we believe. Finally, we are not allowed to defend what we believe.

“By stating what has been believed by mankind for centuries – namely that gender and sex are determined at birth – you can come under ferocious attack.

“If we are no longer allowed to say that you believe sex and gender are the same and are determined at birth, everyone who holds my views can be sacked on the spot under this Act. I’m not an isolated case.”

I remind you that Britain has a Tory government.

UPDATE: From a French reader:

The Sunday Telegraph article is shocking but hardly surprising as Britain is probably the European country most far gone in LGBT-ism – and it saddens me a lot, being a long-time anglophile (but then the Albion we’ve learned to love is no more, just take a trip to London).

As I told you previously the more I see how other societies (d)evolve, the more I’m glad to be French, at least for now. But is that really “other” societies, or just some of them? The Sexual Revolution, the LGBT cult and other niceties were mostly born in the Anglosphere and that’s where they are most virulent, which wouldn’t be a problem or at least OUR problem, if you were not so good at spreading your inventions – good and bad – all around the globe.

I understand that you’re clinging to your “secularization = Sexual Revolution” thesis and it certainly has some merit, but you can’t deny that France, for instance, is much more secularized than the United States and as much as the UK and yet is much more conservative on social matters — just check our abortion laws or the resistance to the LGBT agenda. Same goes for Eastern Europe. I think thus there is something rotten in the Anglosphere, and a close look in the mirror wouldn’t hurt, especially for professed conservatives.

I think this is a point worth pondering. So I am going to ponder it, and invite others to think of it too, and add their thoughts. My instinct tells me it has something to do with the radical individualism of the Anglosphere.

UPDATE.2: Carlo Lancellotti:

As Del Noce pointed out, Wilhelm Reich was brilliantly prescient when he identified America (and the English-speaking more generally) as the culture where the sexual revolution would triumph most thoroughly.

In hindsight, the reason is obvious: the sexual revolution is a philosophical by-product of scientistic positivism (the denial that anything, including sexuality, has a symbolic-sacramental value) and extreme “bourgeois happiness” utilitarianism (faith that happiness can be reached without any reference to the transcendent). Both trends were and are far more advanced in countries with a Puritan-empiricist-utilitarian cultural tradition like the UK and the USA. The results show.

UPDATE.3: A reader points out that what was a source of satire on Portlandia five years ago is now law:

112 Comments (Open | Close)

112 Comments To "UK Doctor Sacked For Blasphemy"

#1 Comment By sophistry On July 10, 2018 @ 3:31 am

Arguing about transgenders is pretty maddening. There is the holier-than-thou LGBT allies, emphasis on allies, who also carry with them the subtle threat of expulsion from polite society and from employment, and then there are arguments from 1) authority by institutions which have been politically compromised and 2) plays on words which are disingenuous and which *feel* like forced lying.

#2 Comment By Mia On July 10, 2018 @ 5:14 am

“My instinct tells me it has something to do with the radical individualism of the Anglosphere.”

Maybe it isn’t a philosophical issue at all. Perhaps our propaganda is slicker and our corruption across the board deeper to make us susceptible to these crazy ideas. I think we have been sticking our heads in the sand about the nature of the people we’ve had in power for some time and the implications of that. I think it may also have something to do with the modern mass culture we have cultivated that makes the propaganda particularly effective, which of course we then export overseas. I don’t see it as an extension of radical individualism but an inability to think for oneself in the face of cultural authorities signaling the “right” attitudes, and probably a lot of dumbing down of the citizens. I see a lot of conformity in the face of any sort of questioning of these messages, not some sort of rugged rebelliousness. But that’s the view at the street level just listening to people around me talk and make decisions and reacting to my actual rebellion against the system.

#3 Comment By David On July 10, 2018 @ 8:40 am


#4 Comment By mrscracker On July 10, 2018 @ 9:40 am

Siarlys Jenkins :

“It appears they DID eliminate the condition, even if you disapprove of the method. Whether “children” were “eliminated” is of course the heart of the controversy.”
The point I was attempting to make about Down Syndrome in Iceland was that they target the population, not the condition. It would be like exterminating the poor to end the condition of poverty. Which actually seems to be a plan in some regions.

#5 Comment By Robert Pavlick On July 10, 2018 @ 3:22 pm

And it’s not just a “Christian Belief”, it’s a biological, and scientific belief ! Doctors may lie, just to make money, but DNA doesn’t lie.

#6 Comment By Hector_St_Clare On July 10, 2018 @ 4:46 pm

As Del Noce pointed out, Wilhelm Reich was brilliantly prescient when he identified America (and the English-speaking more generally) as the culture where the sexual revolution would triumph most thoroughly.

I don’t share the lovefest with Del Noce that Rod does, and I barely even know who Wilhelm Reich is (aside from Eric Hobsbawm’s derisive parenthetical dismissal of him), but that aside, if they made this statement they were quite wrong. America is not a conservative country on sexual matters, but it’s more conservative than much of Western Europe and other Anglosphere developed countries. Depending on the specific sexual-morality issue you’re interested in, it’s arguably more conservative than much of Latin America and Eastern Europe as well.

Public opinion surveys bear this out pretty well. Disapproval of premarital sex is much higher in the US than in either Western or Eastern Europe, and also higher than in the most industrialized Lat-Am countries like Chile. Disapproval of extramarital sex (e.g. married people having affairs) is much higher as well (Russia in particular is noted for having a fairly lax approach to cheating, as is France and some parts of Latin America). Number of sexual partners is lower in the United States than in much of Europe (I think New Zealand is supposed to be the most promiscuous country in the world, at least for women). Attitudes towards sex work, media depictions of sex, how generally ‘sexualized’ women dress, etc. are also quite conservative compared to a lot of Europe and Latin America.

Specifically on the issue of LGBT stuff, we might be an extremely liberal country, but the sexual revolution is much bigger than gender ideology or even gay rights. (To state the obvious, most people who took advantage of the post-1960 sexual liberation were, um, straight men and straight women).

#7 Comment By Siarlys Jenkins On July 10, 2018 @ 7:17 pm

The point I was attempting to make about Down Syndrome in Iceland was that they target the population, not the condition. It would be like exterminating the poor to end the condition of poverty. Which actually seems to be a plan in some regions.

Exterminating the poor is the plan when the poor become superfluous. If their labor is needed, the elites may viciously terrorize them, but never try to exterminate them. Who would work the fields, cook the food, empty the chamber pots, etc. etc. etc?

I understand your point. I merely point out that your point stands only if a zygote, blastocyst, embryo, fetus, are all considered to be human persons. If zygotes could be pulled off the shelf, carefully examined, and then implanted, what woman would deliberately choose a zygote with Downs Syndrome? Who would inflict that gene on their baby?

I’m open to moving the boundary from “quickening,” a somewhat archaic medical concept today, to something like 20 weeks, on the safe side of a self-aware central nervous system. But if an embryo (which is a pre-fetal stage) can be identified as carrying Down’s syndrome, I have no problem treating it as a starter kit, and a woman deciding, no, I don’t want to grow my baby from that defective material.

Even a second trimester fetus, I would leave it up to the woman concerned, not the police powers of the state. And yes, I know that so far the most accurate tests have to wait for the second trimester.

#8 Comment By Srdjan Miletic On July 11, 2018 @ 10:53 am

The claim in this article is that the DWP’s decision to deny David Mackereth employment was unjust and constitutes an unacceptable restriction of speech. I’m unsure whether this is true.

The first question is whether any restrictions on speech are acceptable. It seems that the answer is yes. Let’s say a hard right white nationalist who refuses to refer to black people by any other word than n***** applies to a government job that requires interacting with citizens. Few of us would have a problem with them being rejected on the grounds that civil servants must refer to people in a respectful manner in order to do their jobs. The reason this kind of discrimination is acceptable is that while the government cannot arbritrarilly deny a person a job on the basis of their beliefs it can deny employment to people who are unable to do the job, regardless of whether their inability is down to their beliefs or some other reason. The white nationalists inability to respectfully interact with black people makes them unable to do the job, making the decision to not employ them just.

Moving to the case of David Mackereth, it seems that the first step is to look at whether his refusal to use a persons chosen gender pronouns renders him unable to do his job. Given our natural tendancy to defend our ingroup and villify our outgroup, the fact that David belongs to our tribe skews our moral judgement. To combat this let’s consider the same situation but with the tribes reversed. Lets say there’s transgender hard left activist who refuses to use people’s given pronouns and instead referrs to everyone as “ze”. They apply for the same position in the DWP and are rejected because they refuse to refer to people by their chosen gender. Would this also constitute an unacceptable restriction on free speech? I think most people who read this site would say not. The reason for this is simple. We see treating customers with respect as a core part of a civil servants job and hence believe that those who cannot do that can legitimatley be barred from these jobs. To that end, there are three potential positions you can take
1. Civil servants should refer to anyone however they want (Both Dr Mackereth and the activist can get a job)
2. Civil servants should be required to refer to people by their chosen pronoun (Neither Dr Mackereth nor the activist can get a job)
3. Civil servants should refer to strigh/cisgender people by their chosen pronoun, but have no obligation to refer to non-cisgender people by their chosen pronoun. (Dr Mackereth can get a job, the activist cannot)

If you believe 1 or 2, I have no issue with your beliefs. If you believe 3, which seems to be the direction in which the article’s author would lean, I think there’s a fairly large burden that must be met to justify this kind of differential standard. I don’t think this article, nor almost any other I’ve seen, has attempted to meet that burden.

#9 Comment By John Barleycorn On July 11, 2018 @ 3:16 pm

Sadly the UK has outlawed free speech. It has been going on for years, but is now becoming more obvious. I remember when they banned Michael Savage, and no one in the corporate media would report on it including Fox.

#10 Comment By Siarlys Jenkins On July 11, 2018 @ 10:01 pm

Sadly the UK has outlawed free speech.

Yes, we fought a war of independence over things like that.

#11 Comment By Micha Elyi On July 14, 2018 @ 9:18 pm

Sadly the UK has outlawed free speech.–John Barleycorn

Yes, we fought a war of independence over things like that.–Siarlys Jenkins

No. I disagree. We did not fight a war of independence to hear you say anything that pops into your head no matter how filthy, ugly, or perverse.

#12 Comment By Siarlys Jenkins On July 16, 2018 @ 10:57 am

We did not fight a war of independence to hear you say anything that pops into your head no matter how filthy, ugly, or perverse.

Define “filthy,” then define “ugly,” then define “perverse.” Provide rigorous, detailed, meaningful definitions, then apply these to the specific facts at hand. Then we can talk about it.

I note that the U.S. Supreme Court has found that the First Amendment protects obsessed idiots marching with signs about God punishing the U.S. for accepting homosexuality within a few blocks of the funeral of an Iraq war veteran (although the court’s opinion leaves open that it is probably not OK to disrupt the funeral service). Also burning a U.S. flag is protected speech. Some people consider either or both to be filthy, ugly or perverse.

The bottom line is, we don’t trust any level of government to determine which speech is “worthy” of protection. Once we allow that, anyone could define anything as one or another of those proscribed categories. Insulting the Pope could be defined as filthy, ugly or perverse. By either conservatives or liberals, depending on which Pope we are talking about.

There are some limits, but very limited limits. Pornography can be suppressed if it is produce by involuntary imposition on trafficked adults or children, and I think I have a right not to have either sexual pornography or pro-life banners of magnified raw flesh on public display, if I don’t choose to look at it. But we put up with a lot of bad speech because we don’t trust any authority to decide which speech should be suppressed.