Category Archives: Christian pharmacy

>Coming To A Pharmacy Near You

>Don’t say I didn’t warn you. Just as I predicted back in October, there’s a move by three area Christian colleges to churn out hundreds of “Christian worldview” pharmacists.

Just as Regent University was founded to churn out God’s legal team, we’ve got Union, Lipscomb and Belmont ready to pop out morning after pill-opposing, Gardasil-hating, birth-control-is-the-same-as-abortion-believing pharmacists. The fundamentalist Christian worldview is not one shared by the majority of Americans, but by hook or by crook they will impose their belief system on you. Whether you agree with it or not.

Don’t for a moment think this won’t be very, very bad for women’s health. In a state like Tennessee, which is predominantly rural, there simply is not the plethora of pharmacy choices that one finds in urban areas. Come to think of it, with increasing corporatization, urban areas are losing out in that respect, too. Competition used to be a hallmark of the free market economy, but not anymore. Everything is Wal-mart and Walgreen’s these days.

Don’t even start that “free hand of the market” crap with me. That’s a fantasy that Ayn Rand sold on a bunch of idealists too naive to realize they were being pressed into the service of Acme Holdings, Inc. In the global economy, there is no free hand of the market, there’s a jackboot ready to kick citizens into submission. When one corporation has grown into the world’s largest retailer and America’s largest private employer, the notion of any “free hand of the market” is an adolescent fantasy.

And don’t for a moment underestimate what this means for us politically.

Because sure as the GOP used anti-choice and anti-gay-marriage state amendments to flog their base to the polls every four years, we’re going to start seeing “conscience clause” legislation work its way through the state legislatures. You can count on it. I used to wonder what this crowd would do once they’d played out flag-waving, abortion, and gay-bashing. But the truth is, they’ll never run out of issues. There’s always going to be one more issue that appeals to the lizard brain of the American mind.

Just in time for mid-terms in 2010. Why is that important? Because 2010 is a census year, which determines each state’s Congressional seats:

Federal law requires the Clerk of the House to notify each state government of its entitled number of seats no later than January 25 of the year immediately following the census. After seats have been reapportioned, each state determines the boundaries of Congressional districts—geographical areas within the state of approximately equal population—in a process called redistricting.

Yes, elections do have consequences–even in off-years.

There is no “Christian worldview” of the law, and there is no “Christian worldview” of the pharmacy. The only “worldview” is in the hands of the consumer. If you think birth control equals murder, then don’t use it. If you don’t think you can in good conscience dispense birth control, or morning after pills, or anything else, then find another line of work. There’s no “opt-out” option here. There aren’t too many vegans working at the butcher shop at Kroger, are there? See any Scientologists working as psychotherapists? How about Mormons working at beer distributorships?

To the fundamentalist Christians I say: you cannot force your beliefs on other people. To the Republican Party I say: You cannot keep manipulating your way into a Republican majority. These issues are deeply interconnected to me. And to both groups I say: this will backfire on you, miserably.

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Filed under 2010 census, Christian pharmacy, GOP, rants

>Stock Up On Those Birth Control Pills

>Is this the latest troop move on the culture war front? From Sunday’s Tennessean:

Christian pharmacy professors wanted
Schools struggle to fill demand

By COLBY SLEDGE
Staff Writer

Pharmacists in Tennessee are already in high demand across the state, but the Christians among them might also be getting invitations to trade tablets for textbooks.

Three private, Christian universities in the state — Belmont, Lipscomb and Union — are hiring positions for new pharmacy colleges scheduled to open next fall. Although the process has been smooth, school administrators know they’re only beginning what could be a long ordeal.

“We have fewer people going into this segment of the profession, and we’re starting to see baby boomers retiring,” said Belmont’s School of Pharmacy Dean Phil Johnston.

Johnston has received plenty of applicants for all of the positions posted at his school but says that could change. At all three schools, faculty members must be Christians, including pharmacy faculty.

Oh goodie, more Christian pharmacists! That should mean more stories like this:

CULTURE WAR HITS LOCAL PHARMACY

By Amanda Paulson | Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor

CHICAGO –The culture wars have already seeped into hospices, movie theaters, and the Super Bowl. Now, even the corner drugstore has become a battleground.

From rural Texas to Chicago, more instances are cropping up of pharmacists refusing to fill prescriptions for oral contraceptives and the morning-after pill. As a result, politicians around the country are stepping into the fray.

[ … ]

“Most observers seem to say it [refusing to give out contraceptives] is picking up, and there seems to be a more organized campaign to allow pharmacists to refuse,” says Adam Sonfeild, an analyst with the Alan Guttmacher Institute, which tracks reproductive health issues.

Come on, Southern Beale, you’re thinking; loosen the tin foil hat! Isn’t it possible that there’s a demand for pharmacists, and Christain schools are simply filling an enrollment demand, as any school would?

Sure, absolutely. And just because a school is “Christian” doesn’t mean it’s part of some right-wing fundamentalist conspiracy, either. But the fact is, a lot of religious colleges are getting into the pharmacy game, and this should be a warning sign to reproductive rights activists. We’ve seen this movie before. Just as the next generation of Judge Roy Moores is being churned out at places like Patrick Henry College and Regent University, don’t be surprised if we see a new generation of fundamentalist Christian pharmacists like Kevin Stormans setting up shop at a drugstore near you.

Of course, Belmont and Lipscomb are hardly the ideology factories that Regent and Patrick Henry are. But check out Palm Beach Atlantic University, whose Lloyd L. Gregory School of Pharmacy is home to the Christian Pharmacists Fellowship International. The CPFI instructs its students to “refuse to dispense a prescription that goes against their moral conscience.”

So, what’s the point of all this, you may ask. Well, Christians who want to go into the pharmacy profession have every right to “practice their love with women,” as President Bush might say. But those who think women should have access to birth control and emergency contraception need to start planning for some massive state “Pharmacist Conscience Clause” battles. Because, folks, the fun’s just beginning.

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Filed under Christian pharmacy, culture wars, reproductive rights