On Friday, when I went into the pharmacy to pick up kitty meds, I was pleasantly surprised to see a big sign at the end of the counter: “Emergency Contraception Available Here”.
“Hey, that’s great! I’m really glad you’re carrying that!” I smiled at the pharmacist, who nodded casually. “Did you know,” I went on, “that WalMart is carrying it but allowing pharmacists to opt out? Crazy, right?”
The pharmacist shrugged. “I know a lot of people – friends of mine – who won’t dispense it. People are people, you know?”
I was taken aback. “But . . . do they dispense other contraception?”
“Yes, of course.”
“Then they must not understand how Plan B works. It’s a contraceptive – it prevents ovulation. It’s not an abortifacient.”
He shrugged again. “Each to their own.”
If I hadn’t had a sick cat in the car, I would have stayed to battle this out. As it was, I paid for the medication and left, fuming.
Each to their own? Each who? Obviously, not women trying to prevent pregnancy. Each of them is subject to the caprice and ignorance of self-righteous pharmacists.
What would WalMart do if they had a pharmacist who happened to be a Christian Scientist, and refused to dispense any medication on moral grounds? Target was asked that very question about their own “opt-out” policy, and apparently responded that “The emergency contraceptive Plan B is the only medication for which this policy applies.”
So this actually has nothing to do with upholding pharmacists’ right to choose and everything to do with denying women’s right to choose? Thanks for clearing that up, Target!
I swear, this is almost enough to make me pay $80,000 for four years of pharmacy school, graduate, go to work for WalMart, and then refuse to dispense Viagra.