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VA Hospital Dispenses Christianity Along with Medicine

Navy Times story:

Navy veteran David Miller said that when he checked into the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Iowa City, he didn't realize he would get a hard sell for Christian fundamentalism along with treatment for his kidney stones.

Miller, 46, an Orthodox Jew, said he was repeatedly proselytized by hospital chaplains and staff in attempts to convert him to Christianity during three hospitalizations over the past two years.

He said he went hungry each time because the hospital wouldn't serve him kosher food, and the staff refused to contact his rabbi, who could have brought him something to eat.

Miller, an Iowa City resident and former petty officer third class who spent four years in the Navy, outlined his complaints at a news conference in Des Moines on Thursday. The event was sponsored by the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, an activist group based in Albuquerque, N.M.


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Comments (6)

U.P. Man:

How many instances does this happen in the United States?

What is the other side of the story?

I do feel for the man.

But aren't you blowing this out of proportion ?

After all it isn't like
"Christians threatened: convert to Islam or die"

Paul Hamilton:

I don't think I'm blowing it out of proportion at all. For starters, it's a taxpayer-funded institution and those are supposed to be religiously-neutral. For another, I don't believe anyone should be subject to forced proselytizing, especially when it comes in the course of life-saving medical treatment. For another, it's about as disrespectful as you can get. There's nothing more personal than someone's spirituality (or lack thereof), and to continue to impose your preaching on someone who clearly doesn't want to hear it is an outrage.

So what do you think the "other side of the story" would be?

Lee Ward:

"After all it isn't like "Christians threatened: convert to Islam or die".

Proselytizing has no place in a government hospital other than in the chapel or upon request. I hope they sue and take it to the highest court necessary to win.

What is happening to our country? We can not and will not lose our freedom of religion in this country to a bunch of born-again nutcakes. Those of us who were born right the first time should not have someone else's religion forced upon us.

U.P. Man:

So, I lose my right to practice my religion because you don't agree with it?

I'm a nut case, because you don't agree with my religion?

I don't know what the other side of the story is, that's why I want to know. Instead of going off half-baked and looney.

Don't tell me you haven't met somebody that what most people would think is a small thing and blown it all out of proportion.

How was the Chaplain proselytizing? Did he greet Miller and say "Convert or die"?

And you both need to remember it is the Freedom OF Religion not the Freedom FROM Religion.

What part of taking away the Evangelical Right has taken a single religious liberty away.

Name one ...just one, don't forget to show the law.

Paul Hamilton:

U.P. -- Your right to practice your religion is absolute. But it also stops at the end of your nose. It does not include the right to impose yourself on anyone else and that's the situation here.

A couple years ago there was a court ruling on the subject of religious paraphernalia in the workplace and it was decided that people could have religious articles on their desk or their person, and they could discuss religion in the workplace, but only with persons who are willing, and they cannot just spam people with tracts and the like.

The key is consent...

U.P. Man:

Would you like to talk about religion? Or did I just spam you?

Until recently it was against the law to swear in front of women and children in Michigan. That has been overturned.

So now you can swear in front of anybody at anytime but don't speak about your religion.

Freedom of speech but not if it is religious.


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Publisher: Kevin Aylward

Editors: Lee Ward, Larkin, Paul S Hooson, and Steve Crickmore

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