A British Christian doctor who was fired for refusing to use the preferred pronouns of transgender patients has filed an appeal, saying his case “affects everyone” who is “concerned by compelled speech” and “transgender ideology.”
David Mackereth, a doctor with 26 years of experience, was dismissed from his position in 2018 as an accident and emergency department (A&E) doctor when he refused to identify patients by their chosen gender instead of their biological sex.
Mackereth is a Christian who says his religious beliefs are protected by federal law.
A British judge in October 2019 ruled against Mackereth, saying the doctor’s beliefs about gender are not “worthy of respect in a democratic society” and are “incompatible with human dignity.”
Mackereth appealed the decision to the Employment Appeal Tribunal, which will hear the case March 28-29. The Christian Legal Centre is representing him.
“My case affects everyone, not just me and Bible-believing Christians, but anyone who is concerned by compelled speech and transgender ideology being enforced on the NHS and other public services,” the doctor said. “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.”
The doctor’s attorneys say a 2021 decision in a separate case could be beneficial. In that ruling, the Employment Appeal Tribunal sided with a woman, Maya Forstater, who had lost her job due to her biblical beliefs about transgenderism.
Mackereth says he was asked by his previous manager, “If you have a man six foot tall with a beard who says he wants to be addressed as ‘she’ and ‘Mrs,’ would you do that?” Mackereth said he would not.
“This was an astonishing judgment, and one that if upheld will have seismic consequences not just for the NHS and for Christians, but anyone in the workplace who is prepared to believe and say that we are created male and female,” said Andrea Williams, chief executive of the Christian Legal Centre. “The teaching of Genesis 1:27 is repeated throughout the Bible, including by Jesus Christ himself. It is fundamental to establishing the dignity of every human person but is, in a bizarre ironic twist, being branded as incompatible with that dignity.”
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/RunPhoto
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, the Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.