From this week’s Savage Love, Target has joined the ranks of corporations allowing religion to affect its dealings with customers. I’m not happy.
STRAIGHT RIGHTS UPDATE
Two disturbing developments in the battle over straight rights last week: First, we know Target fills its ads with dancing, multiculti hipsters giving off a tolerant, urbanist vibe and runs hipster-heavy ad campaigns positioning Target as a slightly more expensive, more progressive alternative to Wal-Mart. Well, as John Aravosis revealed on Americablog.com last week, the chain allows its pharmacists to refuse to dispense birth control and emergency contraception to female customers if the pharmacist objects on religious grounds. What’s worse, the company claims that its employees have a right to discriminate against its customers provided the discrimination is motivated by an employee’s religious beliefs. Read all about it at Americablog.com and Plannedparenthood.org.
Don’t just sit there, heteros. Defend your rights! Don’t shop at Target; write ’em and say why you’re going elsewhere. (Go to Target.com and click on “contact us,” then “Target Corporation.”)
Hmnnn. I’ve been thinking about this one lately. Is it OK to require someone, as part of their job, go against their religious beliefs? I don’t think so.
So, say this practice continues (I’m fairly certain it will) – businesses that adhere to XYZ religious principles, thus shutting out some consumers – that seems fractious and unhelpful as well.
Some might say that’s fine – “The Market” will automagically create/support businesses that will suit everyone’s needs.
But what about the people (either employees or consumers) who live in places where there’s no access to a business that fits their principles?
I think the solution is larger and more complex than “Don’t Shop At Target”, and I admit to not being certain about how to address it.
A pharmacist has an ethical duty to administer medicine that is sensibly and legally prescribed by a physician or other health professional. If the business at which they work lets them choose what to prescribe, that’s OK by me, but I will boycott that business or organization.
I read an article years ago about a Jewish doctor who eventually stopped doing abortions. That’s fine. And if a pharmacist decided not to fill birth control or morning-after pills, that’s legally fine, but not ethically fine, as far as I’m concerned.
If a pharmacist were a newly converted Christian Scientist, would that mean they could forgo all prescriptions and hand out pamphlets on prayer to God for healing?
A medical clinic or pharmacy that has a doctor or pharmacist on hand who refuses to perform legal medical procedures or administer legal medical prescriptions should make a point of hiring a second helping hand to make sure those seeking legal procedures and drugs can get them.
Anyway, Target’s a no-go for me.
In other news, D, I’ve applied to HUC and am hopeful I’ll get in.
I agree with both of you guys on the ethics and the scope of the problem…
And B, sugar, that’s great news! Mazel tov on getting to this point! Definitely keep me posted!!