Mean Girl to the Rescue!

How'm I gonna save the world when the world ain't ready?

Friday, January 06, 2006

And now, a Public Service Announcement

Since I'm well aware that the majority of my readers are women, and smart, independent women at that, I wanted to clue you in to something you can do to help other smart, independent women (as well as, potentially, yourself).

Perhaps you've heard about pharmacists who refuse to fill prescriptions for women's birth control pills. Target, in particular, has been having issues with this, largely because they aren't making their pharmacists pass the prescription on to a colleague who doesn't object to filling it. As Stephen Colbert's This Week in God says [click on This Week in God: Fanatics]: "Pharmacists say they have received no complaints from their customers who aren't huge sluts." Just to inject a little humor, here.

You can make your displeasure known to Target here. And here you can see a list of pharmacies and how they scored on filling women's prescriptions, every hour of every day they are open to do so. Interstingly, I see no disclaimer about these practices on the Walgreen's or Walmart's websites (I had thought that these two would be the most definite about their limitations, but perhaps they don't wish to court such scrutiny).

Amusingly, Walmart even has a Women's Health Page in its Pharmacy section, which focuses on osteoporosis, breast cancer and so on. They even sponsor a non-profit program called Speaking of Women's Health , founded by Dianne Dunkleman. The site is festooned with floral graphics and honors such heroines as Florence Henderson (Florence Henderson is a women's health pioneer?). This is what my mother would refer to as "fire insurance." It essentially says, "See, we care about women's health! That's why we are giving a fraction of a percent of our huge profit to a program that barely grazes the issue of women's health!" Seriously, this site has more to say about low-fat recipes and stress, topics certainly not exclusive to women's health, than about anything related to reproductive cancers, osteoporosis, or even breast cancer. It seems to be, more than anything, a pet project of fundraising for a society woman. Though I'm sure her heart's in the right place. Kind of.


At 12:40 PM, Blogger wordgirl said...

More evidence that the patriarchy is so threatened by women's refusal to bow down and worship them(as in days of yore). So the asshats at Target hope to keep women pregnant and sidelined. I wouldn't be surprised if they began aiming to keep us barefoot as well and stopped selling women's shoes.

At 12:56 PM, Blogger Mrs. Harridan said...

I have a creepy feeling that Target is the next Walmart. :(

I've had birth control scrips filled there with no problem, though. I guess I just got lucky.

At 1:07 PM, Blogger Tink said...

My running joke is that, "Walmart is run by the Debil!" And no, "Debil" is not a typo. Which would make Target being run by God fearing people with contraceptive issues that much funnier. Screw them both. See how well they do when women stop shopping there all together.

At 8:41 PM, Anonymous TB said...

The whole concept that a pharmacist, whose job it is to fill prescriptions, would be allowed by their employer to refuse to fill a doctor's order for any type of medication is ludacris to me. What's next? Pharmacists who deny patients meds for drug addiction, alcoholism and STDs because the behavior that causes these diseases is a sin?
Thanks for providing info on where to let Target know how I feel.

At 9:12 AM, Blogger Katherine said...

Wow, this is incredible! How offensive, especially since it's 2006 not 1906! I asked my mom (a pharmacist) her thoughts about this. She said she felt it was wrong for a pharmacist - or anyone whose job it is to provide service to someone else - to impose their personal views on a customer. Go Mom!

At 10:18 PM, Blogger Mrs. Harridan said...

It's a relief to know that there are some (dare I hope for a majority?) of pharmacists in this country who see the craziness of this practice.

Please thank your mom for all of us, Katherine. She's got the right idea. :)

At 11:52 AM, Blogger The Gradual Gardener said...

I absolutely cannot believe that there are pharmacys out there that would do this. Birth control is a really old battle I thought we won a long time ago. I know the Catholic church still claims they're against it, but come on...even people who consider themselves "good Catholics" use birth control. Some degree of controversy over the morning after pill I would expect, since abortion is such a hot-button issue now, but birth control? What century is this, anyway?

At 4:49 PM, Blogger Charlie said...

This issue sends me through the roof with rage. I would like to point out that even your male readers should care about this issue. We all have mothers, sisters, wives and friends. There really isn't any such thing as a "woman's issue."

At 10:04 PM, Blogger Mrs. Harridan said...

Charlie, you couldn't be more right. I think perhaps I've become too used to having a mostly female audience. Certainly, this is an issue that affects men, as well, and it's too easy to assume that men a) don't care about these issues from a pro-female perspective, b) can't be feminists (though it's a rare man OR woman who embraces that moniker these days, sadly).


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