Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Appeals Court Rules Against Pharmacist Seeking Religious Rights Protection

From "Appeals Court Rules Against Pharmacist Seeking Religious Rights Protection" by Gudrun Schultz, posted 5/9/07 at

The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against a Wisconsin pharmacist’s conscience rights May 2, declaring it would place too great a burden on Wal-Mart to accommodate his request not to be involved in any way with the distribution of abortifacient birth control.

Neil Noesen brought a lawsuit against Medical Staffing Network Inc., Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., and the state of Wisconsin for religious discrimination over refusing to ensure he would not interact with customers seeking contraceptive prescriptions.

Objecting to the abortifacient properties of contraceptive prescriptions, which can cause the death of an unborn baby in the earliest stages of development by preventing it from implanting in the womb, Noesen sought permission from his employers to avoid any contact with customers seeking contraceptives, including telephone requests.

Wal-Mart had agreed that Noesen would not be required to fill or otherwise handle contraceptive prescriptions, and had conceded that he would only be asked to serve the needs of male customers or women of non-childbearing age.

Noesen was denied permission to avoid answering the telephone, however, although he was told he could pass the call to another employee if the caller wanted contraceptives.

Pro-life advocates have likened such requirements to being granted permission not to shoot a victim, but being forced nonetheless to hand the gun to another shooter--both are a violation of the moral right not to participate in the killing of an innocent human being.

“Participating in the provision of a contraceptive article that inhibits the implantation of an unborn child, thereby causing the destruction of an unborn child, is unlawful and can never be considered a standard of care. There is no duty to provide this type of service,” Noesen’s attorney argued in a Barron County Circuit Court brief in 2005.

Read the rest of the article.