A doctor in the UK who was fired for saying that he wouldn’t call a biological man with a beard “madam” due to his devout Christian faith is set to have his case heard before an employment tribunal next month.
Dr. David Mackereth’s case was first heard by a tribunal in 2019, which determined that his speech was “worthy of respect in a democratic society” and “incompatible with human dignity,” as CBN News reports.
The doctor, who has 28 years’ experience as a physician, was fired in 2018 by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) after he refused to agree to refer to a “a six-foot-tall bearded man” as “madam” in a hypothetical scenario, which resulted in him being “interrogated.”
The DWP is a British government-run organization.
Dr. Mackereth said that he was fired “not because of any realistic concerns over the rights and sensitivities of transgender individuals, but because of my refusal to make an abstract ideological pledge.”
“I am a Christian and in good conscience cannot do what the DWP is requiring of me,” he explained, as reported in 2019 by CBN.
At that time, his attorneys had argued that he had a right under the nation’s Equality Act to hold a “conscientious objection to transgenderism.”
Based on Mackereth’s belief in the Bible’s definition of gender as outlined in Genesis 1, his attorneys stated, it would have been ” irresponsible and dishonest for a health professional to accommodate and/or encourage a patient’s impersonation of the opposite sex.”
However, the tribunal characterized his belief in the Bible as “mere opinion” and was thus not protected by the Equality Act.
The Christian Legal Centre, which is representing him, said that this was the first time in British history that a judge ruled that a person must engage in compelled speech.
The “conclusion that Christian religion itself was not a protected characteristic simply cannot be right,” they say.
“The judgment from two years ago said to Christians ‘you have to believe in transgender ideology.’ That is totalitarianism. It made out Christianity to be nothing, the Bible to be nothing. That cannot be allowed to stand,” Mackereth says.
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