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I saw a story today about doctors who said they’d rather quit than be forced to perform abortions and/or provide birth control pills to patients because it would “violate their conscience”.  I applaud them their right to self-determination.  If their job involves aspects they can’t or won’t perform, they can and should find another area of specialization or another job completely.  Two prototypical instances are 1) an Amish gentleman not taking a job as a bus driver because of his religion forbids the use of modern technology and 2) a conscious objector to war not enlisting in the armed service.  Their fundamental beliefs prevent them from performing the duties required by their profession.  Doctors are free to do the same thing.  But they don’t get to complain about it when they make their choice. Part of the wonderful thing about being an adult is being able to make your own decisions and choices for yourself.  Part of the crappy thing about making your own decisions is living with the consequences.  Very few choices you make have no downside.

  • Buy an awesome house?  You’re stuck with a mortgage and you better hope the house retains its value.  Rent an apartment? Can’t make any changes to the place without landlord approval and you’re not building any equity.
  • Stay single? You don’t have a lifelong companion and drift from relationship to relationship.  Get married?  You’re tied down to one person for the rest of your life (or until you divorce and have to give up half your stuff).
  • Get a new iPhone?  Welcome to a new 2 year commitment to AT&T.  Keep your current cell phone?  You don’t get to use the thousands of apps that are available and aren’t one of the cool kids.

So, as an adult, you get to choose which of the downsides you will put up with.  Become an OB/GYN or GP (or pharmacist)?  You need to provide adequate medical service to your patients, including providing birth control for medical issues for which that is an appropriate treatment.  Don’t want to do things that violate your conscience?  Don’t take a job that requires you to do things that violate your conscience. And welcome to being an adult.  Enjoy your stay.