Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Washington state and pharmacist rights

So, Washington state looks like it may be the next state to pass a "conscience clause" for pharmacists over the objections of Gov. Christine Gregoire. Lovely.

Since evangelical pharmacists want special rights, does that mean they'll step aside so homosexuals can have their "special rights?"

Oh, wait, I forgot. Only the far right gets special treatment. No other minority group is worthy in their eyes.

For previous thoughts on this, go here and here.


Blogger E. M. Zanotti said...

Its not a special right: its the right to free exercise of religion. These pharamcists are not "evangelical" they're Catholic. Catholicism expressly prohibits its followers from using or providing birth control or abortifacients under Humane Vitae. If you were to force the pharmacists to go against their religion, you violate their Constitutional rights, and their codified rights to free exercise under the Washington state Constitution.

Conscience clauses are well within Constitutional jurisprudence: under the "undue burden" standard, states are allowed to make laws that protect the interests of its citizens pursuant to the states police powers so long as they do not place an undue burden on the states residents. Time and again, even in liberal states like Vermont, which passed the first conscience clause, free exerise of religion has been a legitimate enough state interest to justify the legislation.

There is an interesting note to this particular facet of Constitutional law: even many far left liberal judges support it. Take away one persons rights, and it makes it very simple to take away another persons rights. Larry Tribe and others have long stated that if you were to restrict the free exercise of religion, there is no reason why the Establishment clause could not be restricted as well. Substantive due process does not always work in liberals favor, apparently.

7:23 PM  
Blogger Thad said...

So we deprive women of their right to have a prescription filled that has been duly given by a physician? As I wrote about in the Arizona case, the Catholic archdiocese stated they didn't object to that woman taking the pill because she was raped, but the pharmacist denied it anyways. What about that victim's rights?

Pharmacists have a job to dispense medication. If they cannot perform that duty, they should not be in the position. There hasn't been adequate protection for the customers in the drive to protect the religious rights of the pharmacists. Shouldn't they consider a different profession if they cannot carry out their job description? Birth control is used for other purposes besides birth control. It helps regulate periods. It helps balance hormone levels. Women shouldn't have to go through the third degree or try five different pharmacies to get their prescription.

And, oh yeah, some medical insurances, such as mine and Kristi's, are only good at one chain, Rite Aid. What if the only Rite Aid for miles has the pharmacist who won't dispense the medication on duty? Why should the consumer suffer in this case? The conscience clause offers no balance whatsoever, and it puts the "undue burden" on others.

Basically, it goes to my basic belief. If you cannot perform your proscribed duties because of your beliefs, then you shouldn't be in that field. It's like having an Orthodox Jew running a hog farm. Crude example, yes, but you get the point. Rape victims with a Plan B prescription have been put through hell by some of these conscience-stricken pharmacists. Where's the justice in that?

5:50 AM  

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