May 09
Lorraine Berry lives in the Fingerlakes region of New York, although it's her transplanted home. On weekends, she can be heard throughout the area, cheering on her beloved Manchester City F.C. When not writing at Does This Make Sense? or Talking Writing, she can be found hiking with her two dogs, hanging out with her two daughters, eating what her beloved Rob has cooked for her, or teaching creative writing at a small college in the area.


NOVEMBER 28, 2011 5:01PM

No Plan B for You, Harlot!

Rate: 31 Flag

Christ. They're at it again.

Pharmacists in Washington State have gone to court to affirm their right to make moral judgments about clients and deny Plan B contraception. 

It's not like I haven't discussed this before

In a way, I don't want to write about this one more time. I just want to end the way I did last time: get the fuck out of my uterus.

But, that isn't going to work. 

Stormans v. Selecky is on its way to the Ninth District Court of Appeals, which means, yep, it's on its way to the Supreme Court. Regardless of who wins the case, it'll be appealed. 

At issue is this. The pharmacists and Ralph's Thriftway pharmacy have decided that Plan B contraception is really an abortifacient. Even though scientific evidence does not confirm their opinion. It is possible that it prevents a fertilized egg from attaching to the uterine wall, but it's also equally true that it may prevent a woman from ovulating. Plan B, or the Morning After Pill (despite "The Walking Dead's STUPID confusion of it with RU-486) is NOT the abortion pill. 

It's the pill that stands between a rapist impregnating his victim. Or a woman whose method of birth control failed (condoms break, diaphragms come out) from having to get an abortion should she end up with an unwanted pregnancy. 

But really, this is besides the point. 

I'm sorry. You're a pharmacist. 

You are not the moral arbiter of who gets to take what drug. 

I mean, gluttony is one of the seven deadly sins: is it against Christian ethics for a pharmacist to fill a prescription for Type II diabetes drugs for a morbidly obese person?

And why does a 75-year old man need Viagra? He shouldn't be making babies at his age anyway. And, according to certain Christian precepts, you should not be having sex unless you're planning to make babies.

So, why is it that the only thing that the Christian Medical Association objects to is Plan B? 

Could it be because they have problems with women having sex? 

Nah. That couldn't be it. I'm sure they celebrate sexual women.

Damn. I want to write something profound, make the point that they should recognize their hypocrisy and get on with their jobs. 

But they're not listening. 

What was that I said before?

Get the fuck out of my uterus. 

Yep. That's it. 

Your tags:


Enter the amount, and click "Tip" to submit!
Recipient's email address:
Personal message (optional):

Your email address:


Type your comment below:
Sexual issues aside, we know that they perpetuate the drug abuse/dependence epidemic in the US by filling all those pain scripts. Plan B isn't getting stolen and sold on street corners, is it?

Now, I am all in support of a pharmacist standing up for their right to run a business how they please, but I am also in support of them not being able to collect medicare and medicaid dollars while practicing discrimination. They can just go private, and then that will take them off the moral ambiguity highway of when it's "right" and when it's "wrong" to take money to help people.
stupid is as stupid does -- turbocharged by the Koch brothers.
I agree with Oryoki, if they want the benefits of taxpayer money they need to give anyone who asks their pills.
I am not against the sale of viagra, wait until you start dating men in their 60's before you condemn that one. (just being silly)
rated with love
It's gotten to the point where between Mississippi and this and a half-dozen other things, it seems that women should just not be having sex at all. Which opens up that whole homosexual problem that the Fundies have.
The wisdom of Thomas Jefferson prevails in your argument. The Government that governs least, governs best. (This refers to the individua, as corporations did not exist for another 100 years yet)
Perhaps they should just get it over with and abolish all forms of birth control. After all, preventing a potential life is just as bad. But I'm thinking about organizing a movement where women send their used tampons and pads to all these douchebags, including legislators who support crap like this.
I wouldn't buy so much as a pack of gum from a drugstore that harbors pharmacists who deny women their choice at that juncture.
Who do these fuckers think they are, Bartleby? "I would prefer not to" just doesn't cut it when you are dealing with people's reproduction choices. What about the moral issue of controlling, no matter how hand-off you might think it is (it's not), someone else's BODY? That is akin to slavery. FLW, you make very good and useful arguments in your comparisons to other meds. How about this: the Suddenly Vegan Slaughterhouse and Chickenhouse Owners and Workers Association decides it's morally wrong to eat animals. They refuse to kill and process living creatures. You want your lamb, or your leather belt? Sorry.
Oops, I meant "hands-off."

And things did not turn out so well for Bartleby.
The right screams SOCIALIST at the left all the time. We need to start screaming FASCIST at them once in a while. This is fascist thinking and action. It should not be tolerated by anyone for any reason.
I know I should be serious here, but what comes to mind is the Monty Python song:

Every sperm is sacred.
Every sperm is great.
If a sperm is wasted,
God gets quite irate.

Maybe a pharmacist who makes decisions that overrule the doctor needs to be legally liable for those decisions. Maybe they should pay for their smugness, if their decision harms someone.
can pharmacists also legally deny viagra to guys they'd rather not see possess the ability to procreate?
It seems to me that you said it before - less government is the rally cry of the right, until it comes to our bedrooms. Then they've got their nasty little fingers stuck firmly in our uteri (uteruses?) I couldn't agree with you more...get the fuck out!

Get the Fuck out of MY uterus, too. And while you're at it, stop telling me there's plenty of money for war, but none for that Promotion of the General Welfare part of the preamble to the U.S. constitution. Before you insist all women MUST carry both intentional and uninentional pregnancies to term, act like you give a S*** about whether the kids who are already born have enough to eat--they MUST get proper nutrition in their formative years to develop the right way--and a safe place to live--the family car or a homeless shelter doesn't count. Act like you care whether kids are living in a safe neighborhood, and have a decent school to go to where they learn what they'll need to know from qualified, credentialed teachers.

Before I bring a child into this world, I want a nation that works for ALL citizens, not just the rich ones!

Pharmacists, if you can't handle the morality of dispensing legal and prescribed medications, KINDLY GO INTO SOME OTHER FIELD OF WORK!

Honestly, sometimes I think Pro-choice women should hold a sit-in at these drugstores. And refuse to leave until their prescribed contraceptives are handed over. Wall Street ain't the only place that needs some Occupying going on. We need to be loud and inconvenient and raise our voices about this persistent B. S.

"...Which opens up that whole homosexual problem that the Fundies have...."

????????????? Wanna clarify that a bit, hon?
Safe Bet-
They have a policy of Don't Fuck, Don't Tell, or something like that. Hetero sex is dangerous, and leads to disease and unwanted children, as well as depression and shattered dreams. The entire fear tactic model of patriarchal power is based on the fear/reality of having unplanned, undesired progeny- and it could happen any time you unzip your pants in mixed company. If you could control your life by controlling basic things like fertility, you might not follow the other rules, either, out of mortal fear- because you don't have it any more. I think it's amazing that they are ultimately supporting gay relationships and autoerogenous exploration in this manner. (Really I think it is because the men wish there were more virgins to go around and they think this will help them make their minds up to stay chaste).
I think it's a get-out-the-troops tactic. In the confirmation hearings for Kagan, the issue of her editing the official statement of the American College of Ob/Gyns on partial-birth abortion came out. What the ACOG originally said was that they couldn't see any medical reason or set of circumstances why a partial-birth abortion would be the best choice for a woman. In short, it could be outlawed with no harm to women's health or options.

After Kagan redacted it to not say no ob/gyn could see a use for this procedure, the pro-choice groups jumped on the bandwagon to raise money. Women's choice is being limited! Abortion rights are shrinking! Donate so we can fight, fight, fight for your right to dismember a nearly full-term fetus.

I'm sure this is the same thing. The Anti-abortion groups are using this as an excuse to raise cash and fund themselves. If the country came to a compromise that most people could live with, the pro-life and pro-choice organizations would shrink in size and important --- might even dwindle into insignificance and no organization will every let that happen without a fight.

So, Americans, wherever you stand, keep donating because the fight has to stay alive.
The good news is that the ninth circuit tends to be liberal--that's a gross generalization, but kinda sorta.

You're right, I'm sure this will go to the supreme court, and I'd hate to see what happens when it does.
Amy--Sorry. I should have clarified. If they don't want women to have sex, that means that only men can have sex--with each other--which the Fundies don't like either. That's what I meant. I was being flippant. It's like their opposition to gay marriage means they support gays not being married--am I making sense? It's the ridiculous positions they get themselves into. Personally, I think they just need to learn that sex is good. Sex is real good. :)
Somehow Mr Justice Kennedy has to be given the Grace of Sanity by next Spring. And let us say Amen v' Amen.

r. for raw power.
flw, so very well said!

I like Margaret's idea.
I don't think it liberal to force a company to sell something they don't want to sell. Their reasons are, probably, that they think this is an abortifact. That they may be wrong is of no importance as to the basic issue. People should not be forced to provide a product they don't want to provide. I'd not want a drug store to be forced to sell cigarettes, for example, if the owners didn't want to. People are free to go elsewhere to buy this product and others. In a capitalistic society, this legal product will be sold by others wanting to profit from selling it. You don't like it, but we are free to exercise our conscience. You are free to start up a pharmacy to provide it.
Barbara Joanne, you know in most other professions I'd agree with that, BUT healthcare is different.
My own personal annoyance is diabetes. Even in my short career, I have worked with over 20 non-compliant diabetics. My first instinct is to not work with them at all. To refuse them treatment, because basically (in my view) we are walking around after a person with a razorblade determinedly cutting themselves up and offering bandaids. I feel it's a waste of medical resources and counter productive until they are willing to actively be a part of their care. (not to mention dangerous to our own ability to care for ourselves if our license gets taken away due to a medical crisis)
That said. I am not them. I cannot make the moral choice to deny them care based on my own values. End of story. With medical care it really is that simple. You are not allowed to pick and choose your patients. You get who comes, and you are responsible for them, even if they are not making the choices you would make. It's in the US Patients' Bill of Rights "obtain the prescription drugs their doctor prescribes" The pharmacists who refuse their patients medicine are violating their rights to healthcare.
Thank you, Julie. Your well-reasoned argument, complete with proof, says it well.

I'd like to add that, based on Barbara's logic, we could just as easily say that, if you feel that you can't do your job because of your conscience, when you are well aware of the rules and laws of your profession, then you should feel free to find another profession. That is, after all, your choice.
This is pretty damned profound, Lorraine. I'm with you all the way!