BREAKING: The Biden administrator today told pharmacies nationwide they could be breaking civil rights laws if they refuse to fill prescriptions for birth control or abortion pills or other medications they say will could be used for these purposes. TK story…
—Alice Miranda Ollstein (@AliceOllstein) July 13, 2022
Here is another directive that is sure to annoy Republican politicians in Arkansas, as the author notes:
The action is not a new policy, just a reminder of the current law. This follows a flurry of reports from across the country of patients being denied prescribed drugs by pharmacists who thought they could be used to terminate a pregnancy.
Arkansas’ legislature passed last year and the governor signed a “conscience” law that grants health care providers, including pharmacies, “the right not to participate in unintended treatments.” urgent matters that violate their conscience. What do you bet that some people seeking service have been refused thanks to this law.
I asked Attorney General Leslie Rutledge whether she will go to court on this one. I predict I’ll get his boilerplate response that Biden’s guidelines are toothless. So why not repeal the law?
Arkansas law is not toothless. It’s fatal.
It’s funny that Rutledge is talking about ‘toothless’ guidelines as she, the Benton County prosecutor, Hutchinson’s health department and others took high-profile steps to let people know they would enforce the law. prohibiting abortion. I mean, it’s the law, right?
Incidentally, the growing evidence that Arkansas is a pariah state in many quarters for its cruelty to women is exemplified in an article about college conferences debating whether to avoid states with laws like Arkansas. There are practical as well as philosophical considerations. The article quoted Corinne Low, who organized opposition to a conference in New Orleans from her college group.
Many of Low’s colleagues had been pregnant at conferences. One of them had serious complications that required hospitalization. They wondered if going to a state with restrictions on abortion would discourage doctors from taking action to save pregnant women or their future fertility.
“The difference between whether a doctor has to say ‘the best thing to do is act here’ – that difference is huge,” Low said.
And that difference is a daily reality for every pregnant woman in Arkansas. Add the law of “conscience” to this.