Sick Jewish Veteran Harassed By Evangelicals

The ‘godly’ singing “The Old Rugged Cross.” Or something
The last thing most people in the Coalition of the Sane want when they are being treated for a serious illness in the hospital to have the staff try to convert you to another religion. And when you force a sick patient to choose between following the dictates of his religion or not eating in an effort to convert him, that is not ‘godly’, that is inhumane. It’s also par for the course for Christopathic Uruk-hai.

From the Des Moines Register (italics mine):

U.S. 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….
He described the Iowa City facility as an institution permeated by government sponsorship of fundamentalist Christianity and unconstitutional discrimination against Jews.
Miller has been classified as 100 percent disabled because of chronic painful problems with kidney stones, and he has repeatedly visited the center as a patient and outpatient.
The hospital’s chaplains and staff, Miller said, have the attitude that you either accept Jesus Christ as your personal savior and you are saved, or you are damned.
He said he has tried to resolve the problems with the hospital’s administration without success.
“I am not trying to get rid of the chaplain corps,” Miller said. “When I was in the Navy, I was a religious program specialist. I worked with Christian chaplains, and I believe in the value of the chaplain corps, but not using it to bludgeon people, for heaven’s sake.”

Of course, the hospital is claiming that all Miller had to do was ‘speak up’ (italics mine):

Miller, a divorced father with four sons, said his first two visits by chaplains involved attempts to convert him to Christianity. These visits occurred while he was suffering acute chest pains and was wired to a heart monitor, he said.
When he complained, he said a hospital official told him he simply needed to object more strenuously to terminate such proselytizing. Miller said he considered such a request to be ridiculous, considering his medical problems.
Over the past two years, Miller said, he has been asked over and over by the Iowa City VA medical center’s staff within its offices, clinics and wards, “You mean you don’t believe that Jesus is the Messiah?” and “Is it just Orthodox Jews who deny Jesus?” He said one staffer told him, “I don’t understand; how can you not believe in Jesus; he’s the Messiah of the Jews, too, you know.”…
Miller said the Christian influence at the Iowa City medical facility is so pervasive that he couldn’t even escape it in a patient waiting room. He described how an elderly couple played a keyboard and sang hymns, such as “The Old Rugged Cross,” much to the delight of Christian veterans waiting for doctor’s appointments.
“It was driving me nuts, and they were enjoying it. I was not going to go in front of all of these people and say, ‘Hey, will you stop?’ and then have all the other veterans turn on me. They were setting me up to be further ostracized. It was just ridiculous.”

Leaving aside the harassment issue, this is just mean: Bullies for Jesus. You’re not saving the rest of us–you’re harassing us. Stop it.

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