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Imagine carrying a baby to term.  You’ve waited nine long months for this moment.  You’ve planned for her arrival, you’ve had the baby shower, and you’ve gone to all your prenatal appointments. All along you are told that you are progressing normally and your baby is healthy.Your delivery day comes and, at delivery, your doctor tells you your baby has a devastating abnormality.  A cardiac defect or a severe structural abnormality or chromosomal abnormality… something that was likely already detected early in your pregnancy.

You then discover that your doctor, acting under a state law, withheld this information from you… for fear you would seek an abortion.  

As physicians, when we enter our profession, we take an oath. Part of that oath is a promise to do no harm to our patients, to never lie or withhold information. We are not Gods and should not try to emulate them.

Which leads me to wonder why politicians think they are.

The idea that anyone could intentionally create such a law allowing physicians to ‘play god’ with another’s life … without being held accountable… simply for ‘religious’ reasons is anathema to me, and I hope, to you as well.

 But, as Dr. Megan Evans notes in her column for RH Reality Check:

Unfortunately, the Arizona legislation is working to make this nightmare a reality. On Tuesday, the Senate passed a bill that would prohibit any medical malpractice lawsuits against physicians who chose to withhold valuable information regarding their patient’s pregnancy that could lead her and her family to seek termination. Much to my chagrin, this type of legislation is already law in Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina, Utah, Idaho, Pennsylvania, North Dakota, South Dakota, and is being discussed in Kansas.

Please! I urge you to read the entire article at the link, and I hope you are as horrified and ashamed as I am that this sort of abuse is being sanctioned under law. This needs to stop!

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I’m not going to spend a lot of column space on the details of Judge Chin’s decision. You can read that and much of the analysis of the decision elsewhere on the web.

Needless say it’s not over… yet. As determined as Google is to develop a Digital Library, there’s little doubt that there will be yet another plan, most likely sooner than later.

So says Tim Wu, whose new book, The Master Switch, was released yesterday.

He poses the argument that the Internet now runs the risk of political censorship – as seen in Libya and Egypt, and in the American reaction to WikiLeaks – but also commercial censorship.

“The internet is about 15 years into its cycle as an open medium,” says Wu, “and at that moment in their cycle, most open media tend to turn to closed media.”

I would agree that to some extent this has been true for a very long time, yet not for the same reasons one might suppose.

We presume when we call it “The Internet”, because in truth it is closer to what Tim Berners-Lee called a World-Wide-Web.

“The” Internet is in-fact a series of independent intra-networks and extra-networks interconnected at their edges in order to allow communication and commerce to flow globally.

Some of those intranets are, and always have been private commercial and industrial networks, while others are government owned. Public and academic institutions own still others.

The glue that connects it all are the telecommunications companies extranets that provide the backbone those intranets connect to, in a web-like layered construct that has become more and more complex and inter-dependent over the years.

New services like teleconferencing, VOIP (Voice-Over-IP) and others have been shoehorned into the overall architecture, as have access methodologies like Wireless and WiFi, to the point where the entire model can be destabilised far more easily than had ever been anticipated.

We are rapidly approaching the necessity of a re-design of that infrastructure, and in-fact discussions and planning toward that re-design have been going on for a number of years… a cumbersome, complex process affected by the self-serving natures of the components of the whole great beast.

I think that what is more likely to be approaching in the shorter term is, if you will, a re-boot of the “Internet” back into it’s disparate network form… which his to say multiple backbones that handle different layers of services to different levels of consumers; government, commercial, industrial, scientific and public.

Where the new edges will be, what levels of access will still be free, and what services will become pay-to-play remain to be determined. How soon this will happen depends largely on the willingness and ability of agencies like the FCC and their International counterparts to stand-up to political interference like the recent Republican vote in the US House of Representatives to revoke the recent net-neutrality legislation.

So yes, change is coming, but what that change will be is up to us.

Tell the politicians and petty dictators to go stuff their self-serving ideology and greed up their pipe… and smoke it.

 

From The Moosylvania Page

 

 

 

GPI Map – 2010 < Global Peace Index < Vision of Humanity.

The Outer Alliance is a group of SF/F writers who have come together as allies for the advocacy of LGBT issues in literature. Made up of individuals of all walks of life, our goal is to educate, support, and celebrate LGBT contributions in the science-fiction and fantasy genres.

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