Saturday, September 25, 2004
Chiming in about today's story in the New York Times about Catholic-friendly health-care plans: Right up there, in the "silliness" department, with Ms. Kissling's complaint about "substandard" care (see Rob's post below), is this nugget from Representative Pete Stark: "Medical care is a science. Getting medical care and religion mixed together is just as bad as getting church and state mixed together."
Of course "medical care is a science." But "science" is never just science: Questions about, for example, what constitutes "medical care", about what "science" should or may do, about how to deliver and fund "medical care", etc., are precisely the kinds of questions to which religion speaks. And, to pretend that questions about the application, conduct, and distribution of "science" are themselves merely technical, scientific questions is, well, silly.
On another front, I suppose these plans will soon be challenged on the ground that they impermissibly "endorse" or "advance" religion, and are not simply permissible (and praiseworthy) "accommodations" of faith.