Campaign Takes On Religion and Junk Science in Health Care
June 3, 2014
Center for Inquiry Promotes Science over Superstition in Reproductive Rights, Alt-Med, Vaccines, and More
The powerful influence of religious dogma, pseudoscience, and misinformation on American health care is wasting money, creating bad policy, and endangering countless lives. That’s why the Center for Inquiry (CFI) is launching a campaign to Keep Health Care Safe and Secular, to educate the public and promote health care policies based on science and facts, rather than faith and superstition.
Said Ronald A. Lindsay, president and CEO of CFI, “At a time when corporations seek to force their owners’ religious beliefs on employees, when once-defeated childhood diseases are making a comeback because of misinformation, when people are fleeced by peddlers of useless or dangerous ‘alternative’ remedies, a campaign to keep health care safe and secular is badly needed.”
The Keep Heath Care Safe and Secular campaign will address a wide range of issues in which science and reason are being rejected for the sake of religion or ideology, including:
- Reproductive health, where religious interests seek to impose their beliefs on women by blocking legal access to contraception and abortion
- Vaccinations, where misinformation and celebrity conspiracy-mongering are opening the door to outbreaks of deadly childhood diseases
- Alternative medicine, where scientifically baseless and ineffective or dangerous “natural remedies” and therapies go unregulated
- Faith-healing, where misguided efforts to respect the religious beliefs of parents who reject medicine lead to the neglect, illness, and death of children
- The end of life, where religious doctrines about God’s will and the sanctity of life constitute the principal impediment to those who at the end of their lives desire to die on their own terms and with dignity
…and more, including addiction recovery, hospital ownership, and other critical issues.
The campaign begins today with the launch of a new website, SafeandSecular.org, which will serve as the central hub for educational resources and news about health care policy, and as an up-to-date action center, with ways for Americans to get involved, updated as new developments arise. CFI will ask real people to tell their own stories, where someone’s religion has impeded their access to medical care, or taken in by peddlers of sham “alternative” remedies. Stories can be submitted at the campaign website, and shared on social media with the Twitter hashtag #SafeandSecular.
“As secular humanists, we advocate for policies based on science and reason, and guided by compassion for our fellow human beings,” said Lindsay. “We believe that American health care must be safe, effective, and accessible, but it can be none of those things if it remains under assault from religious ideology and junk science. For health care to be safe, it must be secular.”
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The Center for Inquiry (CFI) is a nonprofit educational, advocacy, and research organization headquartered in Amherst, New York, with executive offices in Washington, D.C. It is also home to both the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry and the Council for Secular Humanism. The mission of CFI is to foster a secular society based on science, reason, freedom of inquiry, and humanist values. CFI‘s web address is http://www.centerforinquiry.net.