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Jeremy Duda

Chris —

I want to know what exactly is so admirable about this person's actions. I can understand if you sympathize or agree with the pharmacist's beliefs, but let's get one thing straight — this person was hired to do a job. If she cannot fulfill her duties, she should find employment elsewhere.

Consider that the Catholic Church considers contraception to essentially be murder because it prevents conception. If a devout Catholic working at a supermarket or convenience store refused to sell condoms (or if the pharmicist at Osco refused to fill presicriptions for birth control pills) becuase of their religious beliefs, would that be admirable? It most definitely would not be. I guarantee they would quickly find themselves unemployed.

What if a devout Muslim working at a supermarket refused to sell alcohol to customers based on his religious beliefs? What if a Mormon (or a committed anit-smoking advocate, for that matter) refused to sell cigarrettes because he considered it to be murder? As a Jew, I am not at all religious, but suppose I were. When I worked at pizza restaraunts, what if I refused to make or deliver any pizza that wasn't kosher (pepperoni and cheese, anyone?)? What if a court clerk refused to file divorce papers because divorce went against his religious principles?

What if a white supremacist (and no, I am not comparing religious people to bigots, if that's what you're thinking) refused to serve someone who was black or latino? Some people, such as the KKK and various other hate groups, consider that to be a religious belief. It's a stretch, but a legal principle is a legal principle (the lawyer in you should appreciate that one).

And let's not overlook the poor woman who was turned away at the pharmacy. The morning after pill is often prescribed to rape victims who do not want to be impregnated by their attackers. What if that was the case of the woman at Osco? Talk about adding injury to insult. Talk about a total lack of compassion. You get raped one day, and then the next day you try to get Plan B and some sanctimonious pharmicist tells you to come back later!

In summation, this woman at the pharmacy in no way deserves praise. I would never take a job that required me to do something I thought was immoral, and neither should she. If she can't do her job because it violates her beliefs, she should find one that doesn't.

It is one thing to have convictions — I wish everybody did — but it is another thing entirely to rub someone else's nose in it the way this pharmacist did. I would suggest that she begin circulating her resume immediately so she can find a job where her moral superiority won't interfere with anybody else's rights.

Your friend in the (not so) liberal media,
Jeremy Duda

Chris

Jeremy

I didn't know you read my blog! I'm so glad that you do, and that you decided to post.

The pharmacist is actually protected by a state law that allows them to refuse to fill a prescription that would contravene their religious beliefs.

Should a pharmacist really choose an entirely different vocation in life because, on some occasions, they might have to do something that would violate their sincerely held beliefs? I should hope not.

As a lawyer and a Catholic, I could (although I wouldn't) refuse to practice divorce law. Should I choose a different profession? Only 25% of hospitals perform abortions, but should anyone who disagrees with legalized abortion decide against being a doctor because, someday, one of their patients might want one?

I don't think it lacks compassion to avoid commiting murder (remember, it's the state of mind of the person we're trying to compel here that matters).

People who have strongly held beliefs would be hard pressed to find a job that sometime, somewhere would present them with such a conflict. As a journalist charged with objectivity, might you decline an assignment to write an evenhanded story about a Klan rally in downtown Hobbs? It's your job to write objective stories, but trying to be fair to people who want to kill you is more than we should ask of anyone.

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