The Corner

No “Right of Refusal”

I must take issue with Rod’s campaign to extend the “right of refusal” to pharmacists. In my view, unless we’re talking about government employees, there should be no mandated right of refusal for any medical professional. That is to say, a private entity — a private hospital, private pharmacy, etc. — should be able to set its own policy. If Eckerd wants to be the morning-after pharmacy (and morning-after pills are legal), then Eckerd should be allowed to only hire pharmacists that are willing to comply. By the same token, a Catholic hospital should be free to refuse to perform abortions and any other procedures contrary to the Catholic faith, and should be able to insist that its employees abide by that decision. In each case, those who disagree with the policy should respond by taking their business to companies that respect their values. In other words, the answer is to boycott Eckerd, not regulate them.

Jonathan H. Adler — Mr. Adler is an NRO contributing editor and the inaugural Johan Verheij Memorial Professor of Law at Case Western Reserve University School of Law. His latest book is Marijuana Federalism: Uncle Sam and Mary Jane.


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