An increasing number of pharmacists around the country are refusing to fill prescriptions for birth-control and morning-after pills, saying that dispensing the medications violates their personal moral or religious beliefs.
"This is a very big issue that's just beginning to surface," said Steven Aden of the Christian Legal Society's Center for Law and Religious Freedom in Annandale, Va., which defends pharmacists."More and more pharmacists are becoming aware of their right to conscientiously refuse to pass objectionable medications across the counter. We are on the very front edge of a wave that's going to break not too far down the line."
And I'm sure more and more people are becoming aware of their right to tell their pharmacist they are no longer going to do business with them if this is the way they operate. But that's besides the point, isn't it?
I'm of the school that believes if you can't perform your job to the fullest, you don't belong in that job. Don't want to dispense legitimate prescriptions to women? Find another line of work. Or maybe open up a morally superior pharmacy that is bereft of things like birth control or anything else one finds morally repugnant. Give it a clever name. Open the door to only to those who follow your strict moral guidelines. State your biases right up front, like have a sign on the door that says "All who enter here must be pure of soul and live life according to the pharmacist's guidelines." And then just hope he's not one of those people who think that pain brings you closer to god, especially if you're looking for Vicodin or something of the sort.
"There are pharmacists who will only give birth-control pills to a woman if she's married. There are pharmacists who mistakenly believe contraception is a form of abortion and refuse to [dispense] it to anyone," said Adam Sonfield of the Alan Guttmacher Institute in New York, which tracks reproductive issues. "There are even cases of pharmacists holding prescriptions hostage, where they won't even transfer it to another pharmacy when time is of the essence."
I don't know about you, but I find that morally reprehensive. If your moral beliefs interfere with your ability to do your job correctly, find another line of work. To shove your beliefs down someone's throat to the point of interfering with their life is bordering on criminal.
Make a choice. Do you want to be a pharmacist or a priest?