Pharyngula

He doesn’t know me very well, does he?

I get all kinds of personal requests — requests to flog someone’s blog, links to articles people think are really neat, that kind of thing. I don’t mind at all. If you think I’d be interested, go ahead, drop me a line. But, you know, I would appreciate it if you at least had the courtesy to actually look at my interests and send me stuff I might like, instead of random spam.

Mike Koelzer did not have those kinds of manners. Mike Koelzer really screwed up. This is the email Mike Koelzer sent me.

My name is Mike Koelzer and I am the owner of Kay Pharmacy in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

I thought you might be interested in seeing the recent coverage on ABC’s World News with Charles Gibson of our pharmacy’s policy to not sell contraceptives. You will find the link to the ABC video at www.prolifepharmacy.com.

Ours is a very important story on the abortifacient properties of birth control pills and why we no longer carry them in our third-generation, family-owned pharmacy.

I would enjoy speaking at your church or your organization’s conference or other event. I also would be honored to have you share my apostolate in your blog etc. To learn more about my apostolate, please see www.prolifepharmacy.com

Mike Koelzer is very proud of his ignorance and his priggish desire to control the sexual behavior of his customers; I think Mike Koelzer is a contemptible, sanctimonious ass, and I hope he goes out of business. Please, if you live in Grand Rapids, boycott Kay Pharmacy. If Mike Koelzer comes to your town to speak in some demented fundagelical church, feel free to picket and protest, and feel free to attend and grill him with difficult questions.

If Mike Koelzer is not comfortable fulfilling his responsibilities as a pharmacist, he should seek some other line of work.

Remember Mike Koelzer, though. This is what they want. They aren’t going to stop with simply limiting access to abortions: next they’ll be eliminating all family planning options.


The pharmacy has a customer satisfaction survey. Help them get better informed!

Comments

  1. #1 Rev. BigDumbChimp, KoT
    September 15, 2008

    He wants to speak at your Church though PZ. Come on. Humor the man and invite him.

  2. #2 Luke
    September 15, 2008

    Maybe there’s a higher profit margin on condoms?

  3. #3 Nerd of Redhead
    September 15, 2008

    You mean the one in the deep water off New Zealand where the giant squid are? Lovely place for Mr. Koelzer to speak.

  4. #4 sailor
    September 15, 2008

    Yes, and in case it has not yet been mentioned on this blog, Palin, when she was mayor signed off on an order that made rape vitcims pay for their own rape kits.
    Of course if pharmacists thought that rape victims must have asked for it to be raped, they presumably could also refuse to sell such kits.

  5. #5 Luke
    September 15, 2008

    Abortifacient: Today’s prize word! Congratulations, Mr. Koelzer, you’ve won $50!

  6. #6 Sastra
    September 15, 2008

    Mike Koelzer hurt his big toe! Some blog must have dropped on it.

  7. #7 Ferrous Patella
    September 15, 2008

    Grand Rapids, MI? Home of Zondervan Bibles. I don’t think he is going out of business over this.

  8. #8 Patricia
    September 15, 2008

    I’d be delighted to have him come to Our Lady of Pharyngula and give the congregation his best sermon!

  9. #9 LotharLoo
    September 15, 2008

    Yet another instance of “What the hell was my spam bot thinking?” category.

  10. #10 SC
    September 15, 2008

    OK, this is entirely tangential to this important topic, but the title of and introduction to the post reminded me of a first-person article this week in the Chronicle of Higher Ed by a journal editor. She was saying that possibly the biggest mistake people make when submitting articles is not being informed enough about the journal – submitting an article that doesn’t really fit, not citing recent work in the journal that pertains to the manuscript’s subject, etc. So the message is: It’s worth it to spend some time investigating a journal before sending off your submission. (This may not be as relevant in the sciences, but for anyone else reading…)

  11. #11 Dean
    September 15, 2008

    I teach in Grand Rapids, but am glad to say I do not have to live in the city.
    However, views like this are quite strong here and, if it can believed, stronger still in nearby Holland. Holland is a quaint little Dutch town where any two people who are not blond-haired and blue-eyed constitute a “gang” in the eyes of the residents.
    This region is the birthplace of the man who founded and runs Blackwater, so these positions are not unusual.

  12. #12 MikeM
    September 15, 2008

    Cthulhu is watching you, Mr. Koelzer.

  13. #13 FastLane
    September 15, 2008

    I wonder how he’d feel if the grocery stores in his area all became kosher and he couldn’t get bacon for his Mcbreakfast anymore?

    I’m guessing there’d be wailing and whining about others imposing their beliefs on the poor, persecuted xians….with nary a hint of irony or self awareness, mind you.

    Cheers.

  14. #14 MikeM
    September 15, 2008

    More witchcraft fun in the Congo… Only 16 people died this time.

  15. #15 Glen Davidson
    September 15, 2008

    Invite him to speak at this:

    Atheist Church
    The Osgood File (CBS Radio Network): 1/4/02
    The Osgood File (CBS Radio Network): 10/11/01

    A ‘Church for the Unchurched’ provides community and moral support without God.

    Seven years ago, three former Catholics and a former Methodist established a church for those who don’t believe in God. They had all left religion after losing their faith, but they still wanted a “Sunday morning experience” where they could enjoy the fellowship and sense of belonging that comes with church attendance. Now, the North Texas Church of Freethought (NTCOF) in Carrollton, a suburb of Dallas, Texas, has a membership of over 200, and is believed to be the largest congregation of atheists in the world. They call themselves a “church for the unchurched,” where nonbelievers can gather on Sunday mornings for the same social and community benefits that other churchgoers enjoy.

    Tim Gorski, one of NTCOF’s founders, was a dutiful Catholic altar boy until he began to question and investigate his faith at the age of 12. Despite hours of discussion with priests, he found that he was increasingly drawn to a type of rationalism that excluded faith in God, and he became a firm unbeliever. As an adult, married and with a family, Gorski noticed that what he missed about church was the sense of community and weekly ritual that church attendance offered. In 1994, after discussing the idea for several years, Gorski and a friend named Mike Sullivan, along with their wives Deborah Boak and Marilyn Sullivan, decided to start a church of their own. It would have all the social and community structure of conventional churches but devoid of what they call the “supernatural” or “superstitious” content.

    The “atheist church” draws a variety of freethinkers, who identify themselves as skeptics, atheists, agnostics or doubters. In lieu of theology, these churchgoers cherish rationalism, and the motto of their church is “think”. The NTCOF is concerned with issues of justice, honesty, and values, and teaches most of the same concepts of right and wrong as other churches, but they maintain that making the right moral choices has everything to do with rational thought and nothing to do with belief in a higher power.

    NTCOF services focus on the human condition, living a better life, seeking meaning and making moral choices. Recent “sermon” topics have included “Our American Freedoms,” “Gratitude” and “Bioscience, Biotech & Bioethics”. One of the most popular offerings at NTCOF is the Freethought Sunday School, which offers members an opportunity to provide their children critical thinking skills and moral guidance without a religious context. The NTCOF says it’s a popular misconception that traditional faith-based church teachings are necessary for teaching children to be good people who make moral choices.

    Later this year the NTCOF will move from the rented conference room where it began seven years ago to a permanent building of its own. With Gorski as the pastor and Mike Sullivan its Executive Director, the church has grown from an initial congregation of 40 to its present membership of over 200. A model for other non-theist churches, including two in Houston and one in Rohnert Park, California, the NTCOF has inspired others to establish churches that prize community and rationalism over theology. In fact, atheists from as far as England and New Zealand have heard about the success of the NTCOF and have contacted them for advice in starting their own churches.

    http://www.acfnewsource.org/religion/atheist_church.html

    Could be interesting, if they’d have him. Not likely to help his business, however.

    Glen D
    http://tinyurl.com/2kxyc7

  16. #16 Becca
    September 15, 2008

    You think Grand Rapids is bad, try Delton.

  17. #17 Prof MTH
    September 15, 2008

    From an ABC article in which the fucktard was interviewed:

    While the number of pharmacies that refuse to sell contraceptives remains relatively small, a group called Pharmacists for Life said that the movement is growing. The effort picked up steam a few years ago when individual pharmacists began refusing to dispense Plan B, the so-called morning after pill, for religious reasons.

    His website does not list any other pro-life Anti-choice pharmacies. His site is designed to generate speaking revenue for himself. So he is an ego-maniacal, misogynistic, Napoleonic, gangrenous, enlarged prostrate with diarrhea.

    I wonder if he sells cancer drugs. They too are “arbortifacient”. They kill cells with the human genome that replicate and grow.

    Women need to stop menstruating too. (I sure most would be happy about that.) After all, menstruation kills roughly 40% of all proto-persons created every year. That damn divine curse placed upon Eve by Yhwh! What a genocidal motherfucker to kill that many proto-people!!

  18. #18 Ryan F Stello
    September 15, 2008

    I’m wondering why Repuglicans like these try to cram every anti-sex position under “pro-life”.

    I’m thinking it’s because they don’t know how to brand a media-friendly version of “Pro-discouraging-people-from-using-their-naughty-bits-for-anything-besides-waste-disposal”.

  19. #19 Bride of Shrek OM
    September 15, 2008

    You think Mike doesn’t know you? Huh.

    The other day my grandmother asked me, a person who has done the better part of 17 years or tertiary study in science and law ,”which of those nice partners at your firm do you do the typing for?”…and no she’s not demented, just a dyed in the wool Catholic who thinks all women should be at home in the kitchen having twelve children and I’m an uppity prig who is devaluing womanhood.

    **sighs and feels much better because of rant. Thankyou for listening**

  20. #20 scrabcake
    September 15, 2008

    “We grow good people in our small towns!”

  21. #21 Prof MTH
    September 15, 2008

    What a genocidal motherfucker to kill that many proto-people!!

    OOOps. That should read “What a genocidal virgin-fucker to kill that many proto-people!!”

  22. #22 El Herring
    September 15, 2008

    I’ll make it a point to travel all the way from Bimingham England to Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA, just to boycott his store! It’s now on my “To do” list.

    But seriously…

    PZ, did you reply directly to his email and personally give him some direct experience of your scathing godless wit? If not, how could you resist? And if you did (as I’m sure you did), could you share it with us? I need a good laugh.

  23. #23 Rev Matt
    September 15, 2008

    @Prof MTH: I’m no math surgeon, but I’m pretty sure that menstruation results in something a lot closer to 95% or more potential voters not being birthed. 40% implies that more than half the months of the year the average woman gets preggers…

  24. #24 B. Scott Andersen
    September 15, 2008

    What happens if Christian Scientists buy ALL the pharmacies?

    Sure, it’s all fun and games until somebody needs a heart medication prescription refilled!

  25. #25 SC
    September 15, 2008

    This looks like a useful site about emergency contraception, by the way:

    http://ec.princeton.edu/questions/dose.html

    BoSOM – You’re married. You shouldn’t be working at all! :)

  26. #26 Owlmirror
    September 15, 2008

    What a genocidal motherfucker to kill that many proto-people!!

    OOOps. That should read “What a genocidal virgin-fucker to kill that many proto-people!!”

    They’re both correct. Homoousios, remember?

  27. #27 Opisthokont
    September 15, 2008

    From the Web site that he invites us to visit: “He lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan with his wife and nine children.” Obviously he does not care for birth control…!

  28. #28 Rey Fox
    September 15, 2008

    Thank heaven I have a pharmacy I can go to now for cold medicine and not have to be in the same store as abootifacients!

    Actually, might anyone want to speak up on what commonly-found drug store items are potential abortifacients? Does this drug store sell pennyroyal tea, by any chance?

  29. #29 Randomfactor
    September 15, 2008

    I’ve long maintained that the way to deal with such pharmacists is to patronize their establishments. Get ten or twenty folks, each with a valid birth-control prescription, and line up at the pharmacist’s window. Present the scrip and ask for it to be filled. If rejected, politely take the scrip back, and join the end of the line. Repeat as long as you have patience.

    If any of the pharmacy’s regular customers need service on that day, they can join the lengthening queue and wait their turns. If the “pharmacist” confiscates the scrip to prevent you from returning, file a formal complaint with the appropriate state agency.

  30. #30 Paul Burnett
    September 15, 2008

    I wonder if Mr. Koelzer carries any supplies for lactating mothers in his pharmacy? Because there is a well-known correlation between nursing and not conceiving. As there is with exercise and not conceiving. As there is with dieting and not conceiving. (Somebody had a somewhat snarky article on this a month or two ago…?)

    Mr. Koelzer should also urgently reconsider some of his other pharmacy supplies, as there are a significant percentage of prescription medications which have side effects which include contraception.

  31. #31 Rey Fox
    September 15, 2008

    “Abootifacient”…that’s how Canadians say “abortfacient”.

    Also, the title of this post should be “He don’t know me vewwy well, do he?”

  32. #32 Bride of Shrek OM
    September 15, 2008

    SC

    That’s what I keep telling Mr Shrek- really a good wife shouldn’t be working. Personally I feel I’m much more suited to 11 am rises, pink gins at lunchtime and ogling the pool boy while reading the latest Jackie Collins soft porn …but the bank has this weird thing about wanting the mortgage paid so….

  33. #33 Margaret
    September 15, 2008

    Prof MTH: “Women need to stop menstruating too. (I sure most would be happy about that.)”

    I wish. Any month now. I guess I’ve killed about 39×12 = 468 proto-persons so far.

  34. #34 Dianne
    September 15, 2008

    Off topic: PZ, you weren’t in NYC riding the PATH to Newark today were you? There was a guy sitting across from me who looked so much like your picture that I was tempted to ask if he were you. But it seemed so inherently unlikely. He was probably your evil twin the fundamentalist.

  35. #35 joel
    September 15, 2008

    I live in Grand Rapids, it’s a nice city and home to one of the best breweries in the world (Founders). But it sure is a conservative city overall.

    I’ve never been to Kay Pharmacy and I never will, but I’ll be sure to “spread the word” about this story.

    cheers

  36. #36 skyotter
    September 15, 2008

    I also would be honored to have you share my apostolate in your blog etc.

    file under “be careful what you wish for”?

  37. #37 Wehaf
    September 15, 2008

    To Rev Matt – ProfMTH is referring to the fact that something like 40% of *fertilized* eggs result in non-implantation or miscarriage. If you count non-fertilized eggs, as you seem to be suggesting, the number does indeed go way up. See: http://www.geocities.com/preconceivedbabies/

  38. #38 andrew
    September 15, 2008

    “He lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan with his wife and nine children.”

    Well there’s your problem….

  39. #39 Dean
    September 15, 2008

    Re scrabcake:
    “We grow good people in our small towns!”

    It is sad, but Grand Rapids is the second-largest city in Michigan, with roughly 200 thousand folks. It is large enough for the loony owner of this pharmacy and a good number of other conservative “family values” type businesses and schools.

  40. #40 Skwee
    September 15, 2008

    It sounds like a spambot.

  41. #41 Diluted Reality
    September 15, 2008

    It makes you wonder how many pharmacy’s like Mr. Koelzer’s there are out there. Is there a website that exposes these types of pharmacy’s?(I’ll have to search google for one) I’d hate to be unknowingly supporting an ass like Mike Koelzer!

  42. #42 andrew
    September 15, 2008

    ….email sent expressing my feelings.

    I’d suggest we all let Mr. Koelzer know that his worldview isn’t shared by all in a respectful, yet firm, manner.

    speaker@prolifepharmacy.com

  43. #43 Longtime Lurker
    September 15, 2008

    I imagine birth control pills are a potent lampricide as well!

    Invite him to speak, Tentacled Overlord, and see how long he lasts in teh lionz denn.

  44. #44 Joe
    September 15, 2008

    Thats what I don’t understand about the pro-lifers.

    I mean they don’t want abortions…fine. here is a method that could dramatically affect the number of abortions in the world, and THEY ARE AGAINST IT.

    I don’t get it. birth control pills don’t kill a baby, they specifically keep it from forming to begin with.

    WTF?!

  45. #45 Holbach
    September 15, 2008

    He wants to share his apostolate in your blog, etc? No doubt he wants to make you an apostle, so that you can spread the news that Pharyngula has found jebus and we will no longer cater to the rational hordes who chew up on the demented religionists. By all means let him come on this site with the ruse that we are all born again and have seen the light and will spread him out, er, I mean spread his mission (snicker) to convert the godless into submission. For shits sake, bring him on! Apostles of doom!

  46. #46 Robin Zebrowski
    September 15, 2008

    This guy just wanted to give a real-life demonstration of the amount of thought and research he gives to these sorts of topics. Sure, he’ll stake his life on it, but he won’t actually LEARN about it first.

    Seems completely consistent to me.

  47. #47 Brigit
    September 15, 2008

    Bride of Shrek OM @19,
    My dad made this whole tirade a month ago because I got Implanon inserted. I’m 26, and doing fucking victory dances because this BC gives me the pleasure of no periods for 3 years!
    According to him, I’m doing the equivalent of shooting babies with a shotgun. sigh. Catholic parents ftl.

  48. #48 David in NY
    September 15, 2008

    As I recall, in about 1974, the Southern Baptist Convention issues a position paper supporting abortion. Then the right wing Republicans (not particularly religious themselves) grabbed onto the abortion-religion combo and climbed into power with it. Sickening.

  49. #49 Jay Hovah
    September 15, 2008

    Randomfactor | September 15, 2008 5:28 PM

    I like the cut of your jib…thanks for the idea!

  50. #50 mjs
    September 15, 2008

    How many Christian churches would tolerate a minister or pastor who was “not comfortable” with preaching certain parts of the bible, i.e. miracle birth, a dying and resurrected god, angry-god crime scenes, etc.

    “Dear Congregation: I was going to speak about Noah and the Flood for today’s sermon, but I find that this story is at odds with what I know of recorded and scientifically discovered history. Yes, the earth was covered in water at one time, but that was millions of years ago, not six or eight thousand years ago, and for all of the land animals to have boarded one giant ark, well, can you say “overbooking?” That being said, I would like all of you to make use of the Holy Water Pistols I have had placed next to the hymnals. You may begin spraying each other now…”

    Let’s go to church and demand that they “Teach the Controversy!” Or not. Probably not.

    ++++

  51. #51 Rev. BigDumbChimp, KoT
    September 15, 2008

    I’m doing the equivalent of shooting babies with a shotgun.

    Coincidentally, a well known Atheist party game.

  52. #52 JStein
    September 15, 2008

    This is bad, man. I mean, I know he’s ignorance, but that would be like me sending a link to a Richard Dawkins interview to the Pope. It’s just really, really stupid.

  53. #53 Fluffybunnyfeet
    September 15, 2008

    Oh FSM, oh FSM, oh FSM…

    I’m TOTALLY ashamed to say, I live in Bland Vapids – in fact, I drive regularly past Fucktard’s small… insignificant… about-to-be-wiped-out-by-major-chain-stores… drug emporium. Now I must visit your honorable blog ONLY with my Grand-Rapids-issue Meijers paper bag over my head.

    I’m SOOOOO ashamed…

  54. #54 JRQ
    September 15, 2008

    “Please, if you live in Grand Rapids, boycott Kay Pharmacy. ”

    Will do — many thanks for the heads-up. Just moved to Grand Rapids and still getting used to the area.

    It’s funny, we were warned about how conservative (and religious) the city and its surrounds are, and we’ve definitely seen a ton of that. But at the same time, we’ve also found a surprising quantity of progressive causes and activities going on as well. Thankfully, GR is big enough to accommodate some variety (in the city itself, at least). Overall, it is pretty nice for a small/medium-ish city in the midwest.

  55. #55 andrew
    September 15, 2008

    interestingly, CDK007 posted a video just yesterday on this very topic: is god pro-life?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vfbERKwNszU

  56. #56 verster@zest4.tv
    September 15, 2008

    Sure the guy is a douche-bag, but surely you can’t force a business owner to carry a product that he doesn’t want to sell.

  57. #57 Wehaf
    September 15, 2008

    Joe @ 44 – that’s because the anti-choicers don’t care about babies, they care about controlling women.

  58. #58 SoMG
    September 15, 2008

    I just visited the Pharmacists for Life website. (http://www.pfli.org/) You’d expect a professional pharmacists’ organization to have a serious-looking web site and to discuss its issues in a professional manner, right? Not this one. They repeatedly refer to Obama as “Barrie Hussein.” They call pro-choicers “abortoholics”. And they refer to Planned Parenthood as “Klan Parenthood”.

    What a bunch of little kids.

  59. #59 Sven DiMilo
    September 15, 2008

    I had a good time in Grand Rapids once.
    Was proselytized on the way out though…

  60. #60 terrylong
    September 15, 2008

    The mark of the beast will be a cross.

  61. #61 Becca
    September 15, 2008

    Yeah, Grand Rapids is not full of evil, but this guy is certainly not a lone kook.

    Of course, I might just miss Meijers and the brewery.

    I know I miss Circle Pines. You wanna see opposite ends of the political spectrum, check out the naked hippies there and compare them to the townies of Delton.
    Grand Rapids makes everyone seem middle-of-the-road by comparison.

  62. #62 Jeff Bell
    September 15, 2008

    Is the title from Bugs Bunny?
    http://faultgame.com/images/bbdntknw.wav

  63. #63 Patricia
    September 15, 2008

    Bride of Shrek – What?! Slutting, beating back the pythons from the chook rook, dandling the little terrors on your knee, looking out for his nibs, AND you have to work! That’s just too much. Damn bankers. *snort*

  64. #64 Wehaf
    September 15, 2008

    Verster @ 56 – you can if he’s a pharmacist. Or, at least, you should be able to if he’s a pharmacist. This is because pharmacists need to be nationally licensed, and have a monopoly. They are like other healthcare providers, in that they shouldn’t be able to refuse care for anything other than medical reasons. So wacko anti-choice pharmacists shouldn’t get to refuse to provide contraceptives, and wacko Scientologist pharmacists shouldn’t get to refuse to provide anti-depressants or anti-psychotics, and wacko Christian Scientist pharmacists shouldn’t get to refuse all medications. Pharmacists are licensed by the state to perform a service. If they don’t want to perform that service, they should find another job, like anyone else.

  65. #65 frog
    September 15, 2008

    verster@zest4.tv Sure the guy is a douche-bag, but surely you can’t force a business owner to carry a product that he doesn’t want to sell.

    You sure as hell can when he’s received a state license to sell medications. If he doesn’t want to sell bc, he can send back his pharmacist’s license and just sell liquor and breath mints.

    Being a pharmacist is not just a private business, just like being an MD isn’t just a private consultation; these are public/private positions with certain duties that go along with the privilege.

  66. #66 dwarf zebu
    September 15, 2008

    I certainly hope that Mr. Koetzler isn’t filling any prescriptions for fertility drugs, either. Even though he might argue that the wholly babble doesn’t have anything to say about such things, neither does it mention abortion.

    If it’s wrong to circumvent his god’s will by aborting unborn children, it’s no less wrong to go behind his god’s back by using medical technology to have kids that wouldn’t be born without it!

  67. #67 AR
    September 15, 2008

    For Viagra buyers, does he demand a marriage certificate, or a wedding ring on the finger? He shouldn’t enable fornication, should he?

  68. #68 Prof MTH
    September 15, 2008

    Being a pharmacist is not just a private business, just like being an MD isn’t just a private consultation; these are public/private positions with certain duties that go along with the privilege.

    MDs and DDSs are not allowed to refuse treatment to homosexuals or AIDs patients, for example. A DDS who does so can lose his/her license. Why are pharmacists allowed a veto exception?

    Incidentally, if a pharmacist confiscates a prescription or refuses to refer the person to a pharmacist known to fill the prescription they may be fined and/or lose his/her license as required by court rulings.

  69. #69 Anne
    September 15, 2008

    Joe @ 44

    It’s not really about protecting embryos or unborn babies. They do not care about them once they’re born and they certainly don’t care about poor, unwed mothers.

    To the fundies pregnancy, birth and parenting are punishment for enjoying sex. For these wackaloons the *only* reason anyone should mate is for the production of a child.

    If you’re pregnant because of rape, well, too bad, you probably deserved it in their minds.

  70. #70 Greg Peterson
    September 15, 2008

    I am an atheist and a liberal and I describe myself as “pro-choice and anti-abortion.”

    I know a lot of my fellow liberal/atheist buds don’t like it, but the fact is, I feel that purely elective abortions after the first term are morally compromised (and if the pregnancy is from rape or incest or threatens the health of the mother, that is not “purely elective”).

    That’s just my moral sense of things and I don’t want it to be the law of the land. I want the wide availability of safe, legal abortions to be the law of the land.

    But for me, and others with a similar view, the pro-choice/anti-abortion position depends entirely on good education, no or low-cost contraception (including emergency contraception) and an enlightened attitude toward sexuality.

    If these fetus-worshipping dolts hold sway, we will remain locked forever in an ethically repugnant battle. And the only result will be unwanted children, back-alley abortions, and frankly, lots more anal sex (as one study on the effects of abstenance-only education found).

    So perhaps a neato campaign T-shirt for Palin and her ilk would be “Back-Alley Abortionist B***f**kers for Palin.”

  71. #71 Michael X
    September 15, 2008

    verster, this simply isn’t any ol’ business. It’s a regulated profession. They are required to be competent in and to perform a very specific set of duties or they don’t get to be called pharmacists.

    A pharmacists job description is: correctly doling out prescriptions made by doctors and informing the people on how they should be properly used. Nowhere in that job description is there a by-line that allows the pharmacist to refuse the doctors prescription based on their own delusions. That is a blatant abuse of position and nowhere is it included in the duties and responsibilities of any pharmacist, anywhere.

    As PZ mentioned. If you don’t like to give out certain prescriptions, then you shouldn’t be a pharmacist. Period.

  72. #72 andyo
    September 15, 2008

    He probably thinks you’re the conservative’s Onion. I mean who could possibly “believe” in evolution and not a super-natural super-hero sky daddy? It’s got to be a parody!

  73. #73 coz
    September 15, 2008

    Brigit #47
    I got Implanon inserted 2 years ago in Sydney, Australia, cost $29.
    I live in Arizona now and people are surprised at such a thing. I hope I can find a doc here who will remove it when the time comes.
    Sadly I’m not one of the lucky few that skips periods. It looked promising at the start now its just random and usually painful…*sigh*.
    But still worth 3 years of stress free sex…woot! and not having to deal with wankers.

    I really like living in the States, but it still scares me sometimes.

  74. #74 Greta Christina
    September 15, 2008

    If Mike Koelzer is not comfortable fulfilling his responsibilities as a pharmacist, he should seek some other line of work.

    Seriously.

    I mean, whatever else you may say about the Jesus character in the New Testament Gospel novels — and I’ll grant that he’s a complicated, often internally- contradictory character — at least the dude had the courage of his convictions, and was willing to make sacrifices for them. Maybe a little too willing.

    But not this jerkbag. He wants to stick with his principles and refuse to make birth control available… AND he wants to keep his job as a pharmacist while doing it. He wants to have his cake and eat it, too. Not exactly “WWJD?” material.

  75. #75 Buford
    September 15, 2008

    If any of you offering your opinions on the legal position of pharmacies have expertise, I’d like to know it. (That seems more confrontational than I meant, but on to the main point)

    I work for a non-profit HMO and we have our own pharmacies in our clinics. (I work in IT, not RX) We have recieved good press in the last few years for NOT providing Vioxx and other drugs that have been recalled. We maintain a pharmacy board that evaluates drugs and their safety before including them in our company pharmacies. The drugs in question had not met our standards.

    This would point to some legal rights in terms of what to sell and what not to.

  76. #76 Kristin
    September 15, 2008

    I’m tired of pharmacists thinking they are doctors.

    The best comparison of this guy’s type of attitude I’ve heard was as follows:

    It’s like going into a Burger King, ordering a hamburger, and having the clerk refuse because they believe that “meat is murder.” If you then ask for someone else to serve you, they say “nope, that would be aiding the murder of a defenseless animal.”
    So basically, you walk into an establishment that advertises itself as selling hamburgers, and are refused service because of the employee’s personal beliefs. If your beliefs conflict with the base purpose of your employers, don’t work there. Plain and simple, you belong in a different field of work.

    If you work in a pharmacy, your job is to fill prescriptions, regardless of what they are. If you work in a restaurant, your job is to bring people food, regardless of what they order.

    That being said, I’m ok with the ‘I’ll find someone else to do it’ policy that some pharmacies have, as long as my prescription gets filled by someone.

  77. #77 SC
    September 15, 2008

    I had a good time in Grand Rapids once.
    Was proselytized on the way out though…

    Awesome set list. I think I’ll put on China Cat/I Know You Rider as soon as Coffin for Head of State

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AMr_GUD_III

    ends (it’s rather long).

  78. #78 Rey Fox
    September 15, 2008

    “>>I’m doing the equivalent of shooting babies with a shotgun. ”
    “Coincidentally, a well known Atheist party game.

    That’s terrible. TERRIBLE!

    By the time you got all the shot out, you’d barely have any meat left!

    “So perhaps a neato campaign T-shirt for Palin and her ilk would be “Back-Alley Abortionist B***f**kers for Palin.”

    I’d prefer a shirt that just says “McCain/Palin” inside a big wire clothes hanger. But then I’m big on subtlety.

  79. #79 Michael X
    September 15, 2008

    Buford@75,
    I think the situations are different, though still problematic.

    In your case the pharmacy withheld products on the empirical grounds that they were actually harmful. This is a statement that can be tested. The pharmacist in question withheld products on account of personal, untestable, delusion. In your case, the empirical element is what everything hinges on.

    I do still have issues though with the fact that a doctor is being overridden. This is for two reasons, either 1)Someone is needlessly butting into a private decision made between a doctor and a patient or 2)Doctors are ignorant of all the facts about what it is that they are prescribing.

    Neither of those situations seems ideal.

  80. #80 Pete Rooke
    September 15, 2008

    Nothing like destroying another person’s livelihood is there Dr. Myers? First the wife of a harmless husband who got carried away sending you an angry letter and now a principled family pharmacist..

  81. #81 Owlmirror
    September 15, 2008

    I am an atheist and a liberal and I describe myself as “pro-choice and anti-abortion.”

    I know a lot of my fellow liberal/atheist buds don’t like it, but the fact is, I feel that purely elective abortions after the first term are morally compromised (and if the pregnancy is from rape or incest or threatens the health of the mother, that is not “purely elective”).

    As I often try to when this sort of thing comes up, I point to Carl Sagan’s & Ann Druyan’s thoughtful essay on the topic.

    http://www.2think.org/abortion.shtml

    But in summary, the first trimester is most certainly not the most reasonable cutoff point.

  82. #82 hje
    September 15, 2008

    No birth control, but free Viagra for all the dominionist patriarchs. As they say: An idle penis is the devil’s tool. /so to speak/

  83. #83 Michael X
    September 15, 2008

    Angry letter Pete? I believe the correct term is threat of violence.

    Also, if you wouldn’t mind defining “principled” for me. I have yet to reconcile it with the idea arrogantly refusing prescriptions to people on no rational grounds whatsoever.

    I’m sure you’ll clear that up for me.

  84. #84 Patricia
    September 15, 2008

    Pete go back to the basement and fantasise about dashing little ones on rocks.

  85. #85 N.B.
    September 15, 2008

    Arrrrrgh. Come on, people! Stop making my chosen profession look bad!

    PZ, I swear all pharmacists aren’t like this.

  86. #86 todthemod
    September 15, 2008

    Re comment #80:

    John McCain, is that you?

  87. #87 Pimientita
    September 15, 2008

    @Greg Peterson

    But for me, and others with a similar view, the pro-choice/anti-abortion position depends entirely on good education, no or low-cost contraception (including emergency contraception) and an enlightened attitude toward sexuality.

    Right on!

    I am also in the pro-choice/anti-abortion position. However, like you, I know that the only way to reduce the need for abortions is to reduce unwanted pregnancy in a realistic fashion, which does not mean deluding ourselves into thinking that abstinence education works, that limiting the availability of contraceptives works, etc. Being against something without offering a realistic solution seems to be a major problem with some conservative thinking (immigration and the GWOT are two good examples).

    The hypocrisy and misogyny of the “pro-life” movement is becoming ever more apparent. It’s been crystal clear to me from the get-go, but with the more prominent religious organizations speaking out more and more against birth control of any kind, more people are beginning to get the real picture.

  88. #88 Brigit
    September 15, 2008

    Coz@73,

    I got it a month and a half ago, and up to now no problems. I sucked at taking the Pill constantly; having no concerns of that type had a huge positive impact in my sex life. Yay for carefree sex! Mr. Brigit used to make a period “rain dance” to hope it would arrive in time!
    My prescription was covered by insurance, but I’m in grad school and the university clinic tends to be helpful in that regard. For removal, you can check if http://www.implanon-usa.com has a list of licensed physicians.

  89. #89 SC
    September 15, 2008

    Yay for carefree sex!

    I’m beginning to get concerned. Y’all are using condoms to protect against STDs, right?

  90. #90 SC
    September 15, 2008

    Mr. Brigit

    Ah. OK.

  91. #91 jj
    September 15, 2008

    Reminds me of a quote muttered by a friend the other day:
    “If you are against abortions then I’d suggest not getting one, likewise, if you feel same-sex marriages are immoral, don’t marry another man”

  92. #92 Prof MTH
    September 15, 2008

    Buford @ 7:

    Michael X is correct. A pharmacist may validly refuse to fill a prescription s/he believes based upon reasonable evidence (clinical trials) may be harmful to the person. Additionally, sometimes a pharmacist has information a doctor may not be aware of such as full prescription compliment–meaning a pharmacist may know all the drugs a person is taking where the prescribing doctor may not have access to that information for whatever reason (the patient forgot to mention it). The pharmacist may then be aware of interaction effects. The pharmacist is then required to either notify the patient and refer him/her back to the doctor or contact the doctor directly (which is usually more efficient).

    Here is a WP article you need to read:
    Pharmacists’ Rights at Front Of New Debate

    From the article:

    Pharmacists for Life International, which claims 1,600 members on six continents. Its members are primarily in the United States, Canada and Britain.
    “Our group was founded with the idea of returning pharmacy to a healing-only profession. What’s been going on is the use of medication to stop human life. That violates the ideal of the Hippocratic oath that medical practitioners should do no harm,” said Karen L. Brauer, president of Pharmacists for Life, who was fired from a Kmart pharmacy in Delhi, Ohio, for refusing to fill birth control prescriptions.
    No one knows exactly how often that is happening, but cases have been reported across the country, including in California, Washington, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Texas, New Hampshire, Ohio and North Carolina. Advocates on both sides say the refusals appear to be spreading, often surfacing only in the rare instances when women file complaints.
    Pharmacists are regulated by state laws and can face disciplinary action from licensing boards. But the only case that has gotten that far involves Neil T. Noesen, who in 2002 refused to fill a University of Wisconsin student’s birth control pill prescription at a Kmart in Menomonie, Wis., or transfer the prescription elsewhere. An administrative judge last month recommended Noesen be required to take ethics classes, alert future employers to his beliefs and pay what could be as much as $20,000 to cover the costs of the legal proceedings. The state pharmacy board will decide whether to impose that penalty next month.

    Again note that none of those 1600 members are listed on the Pharmacists for Life Pussy Oppression website sent to PZ.

  93. #93 Llurra
    September 15, 2008

    May I ask a simple question of you esteemed women and men of science. When does human life begin?

  94. #94 Falyne
    September 15, 2008

    I’m *hoping* that’s the sockpuppet again playing as Pete Rooke for laughs. I don’t think Pete ever went so far as to call actual death threats being “carried away”. The “principled family pharmacist” part IS on-key, though…

  95. #95 Llurra
    September 15, 2008

    JJ Reminds me of a quote muttered by a friend the other day:
    “If you are against abortions then I’d suggest not getting one, likewise, if you feel same-sex marriages are immoral, don’t marry another man”
    AND THEN SHALL WE SAY, IF YOUR AGAINST SLAVERY DON’T OWN A SLAVE BUT LET ME HAVE MY RIGHT TO A SLAVE. DON’T FORGET SLAVERY WAS ONCE LEGAL IN THE USA.

  96. #96 Michael X
    September 15, 2008

    Let me preempt you Llaura: NOT AT CONCEPTION.

    The medical equivalent is at “implantation”. Though that is not an answer to the philosophical question, just a negation of your obvious scientific misconceptions.

    I will also refer you http://www.2think.org/abortion.shtml

  97. #97 Former PZ Student
    September 15, 2008

    # 70
    -So perhaps a neato campaign T-shirt for Palin and her ilk would be “Back-Alley Abortionist B***f**kers for Palin.”-

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!!! Ha ha ha!

  98. #98 Michael X
    September 15, 2008

    Llurra@95, if you’re going to equate slavery with abortion, please show your work. The bald assumption doesn’t fly here.

  99. #99 Bride of Shrek OM
    September 15, 2008

    If that idiot LLurraa or Lauurra or whatever the fuck he/she spells it like this week, gets the million comment trophy then I’m packing my bat and ball and going home.

  100. #100 Eve
    September 15, 2008

    Re: # 93 – It doesn’t matter. For all functioning purposes the blastocyst / zygote / embryo / fetus is a part of the woman’s body. Hence, she is the only one with the right to decide what happens to it.

    And since women will continue to choose chemical birth control and abortion whether they are illegal or not, it is far more human and humane to keep them safe, accessible, and legal for those women who choose them. In addition, birth control that includes preventing the implantation of the blastocyst in the uterine lining prevents the need to decide whether to have an abortion or not – since it prevents an unwanted pregnancy.

    But you don’t want women to have total control over their bodies, do you? That’s why you want blastocysts / zygotes / embryos / fetuses designated as persons, individuals, human beings, so that you can force women to carry pregnancies to term whether they want to or not. So that you can deny them chemical birth control and hence control over their sexuality. After all, if a girl doesn’t want to get pregnant, she should just keep her legs closed, right? She’s got no right to have sex unless she wants to get pregnant, right?

    These women-hating attitudes really make me sick…

  101. #101 Nerd of Redhead
    September 15, 2008

    May I ask a simple question of you esteemed women and men of science. When does human life begin?

    I can only speak for myself here, but you not asking the right question. The right question is: when does the alleged rights of the fetus take precedence over that of the woman whose body the fetus is biologically a parasite in?

    My answer is simple. If I can’t hold it in my hands, it ain’t a baby, so that means once it is born. Extra protections for the fetus can come into play once the fetus is capable of living outside the womb with extensive medical intervention.

  102. #102 Prof MTH
    September 15, 2008

    Arrogant Llura said:

    May I ask a simple question of you esteemed women and men of science. When does human life begin?

    A few clarification questions:
    1. Why the stipulation of human life?
    2. Do you mean biological life or biographical life?
    3. Of the two kinds of life which is relevant for moral consideration?

    I need to know if my bio-seekers (sperm) deserve moral standing. Should I stop picking my nose too?

  103. #103 Brigit
    September 15, 2008

    SC @89,
    Long, steady relationship and proper bloodwork done together*.

    *Disclaimer: and yes, I know even marriage does not protect against STDs.

  104. #104 Kel
    September 15, 2008

    It takes 9 months for an embryo to develop into a human, the minimum amount of time that development can happen before the foetus could survive on it’s own outside the womb is about 6-7 months. Before that stage, it’s still developing and doesn’t have the features capable of surviving on it’s own. As a developing foetus, it’s wholly dependant on it’s mother’s survival for it’s own.

    So while late term abortions are unfavourable, there is reason for the “life begins at birth” train of thought. Until it’s born, it’s a parasitic organism growing in a uterus. Defining life at birth at least somewhat defines the independant organisms even though a child still relies on it’s mother for sustainance.

  105. #105 dubiquiabs
    September 15, 2008

    @Anne, #69

    I think it was Barney Frank who summarized it succinctly, saying that Conservatives’ concern for human life “begins at conception and ends at birth”.

  106. #106 dubiquiabs
    September 15, 2008

    @ Pete Rooke, #80

    There’s an easy remedy, Mr. Rooke. Mr. Koelzer can stick by his perverted principles at his own cost, rather than other peoples’.

  107. #107 tim Rowledge
    September 15, 2008

    Arrogant Llura said:

    May I ask a simple question of you esteemed women and men of science. When does human life begin?

    When the fetus can support itself as an independent lifeform. Which seems to be about 20 years post-partum these days.

  108. #108 Nerd of Redhead
    September 15, 2008

    If there was a god, Mr. Koelzer would pay half the cost of raising a child to 18 for every BC script he won’t fill.

  109. #109 Don Kane
    September 15, 2008

    Opps, when I first skimmed the article, thought he said “3rd world”

    generation. generation. Got it.

  110. #110 jjdiogenes
    September 15, 2008

    I used to live less than three blocks from Kay Pharmacy in Grand Rapids . . . I guess that would explain why I couldn’t buy condoms there. Of course, as I recall, Walgreens put it to shame – I don’t believe they even had diet pop there (diet soda to all you non-Michiganders). The place reminded me of a five and dime store from the 60’s more than a respectable drug store of today.

  111. #111 Mena
    September 15, 2008

    Llurra profoundly remarked:
    May I ask a simple question of you esteemed women and men of science. When does human life begin?
    As soon as your parents kick you out of their basement.

  112. #112 Naked Bunny with a Whip
    September 15, 2008

    When does human life begin?

    After the last kid has moved into his or her own place, according to my parents.

  113. #113 Naked Bunny with a Whip
    September 15, 2008

    Damn, too slow.

  114. #114 amphiox
    September 15, 2008

    Dear Llura:
    Define human. Define life.

    Conception occurs with the fusion of two gametes, both of which were already alive. The gametes differentiated from precursor cells, all of which were alive. These cells came from earlier cells, all of which were also alive, and so on all the way back to the very beginning. Life has many endings, but only one beginning.

    So I’ll make it easier for you. Forget life. Just define human. Then we can discuss.

  115. #115 genesgalore
    September 15, 2008

    life is a continuum. an egg is alive and a sperm is alive. and anyone who keeps them apart is a murderer.

  116. #116 Rev. BigDumbChimp, KoT
    September 15, 2008

    JJ Reminds me of a quote muttered by a friend the other day:
    “If you are against abortions then I’d suggest not getting one, like wise, if you feel same-sex marriages are immoral, don’t marry another man”
    AND THEN SHALL WE SAY, IF YOUR AGAINST SLAVERY DON’T OWN A SLAVE BUT LET ME HAVE MY RIGHT TO A SLAVE. DON’T FORGET SLAVERY WAS ONCE LEGAL IN THE USA.

    LLuarara

    Did you really just equate homosexual marriage with slavery?

    What a disgusting person you are. How do you sleep at night?

    Please tell us about the Native Americans and how they are descendants of the Israelites.

  117. #117 Rev. BigDumbChimp, KoT
    September 15, 2008

    Awesome set list. I think I’ll put on China Cat/I Know You Rider as soon as Coffin for Head of State

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AMr_GUD_III

    ends (it’s rather long).

    oh.my. cosmic muffin.

    I think i love you. A dead head and a Fela fan!

  118. #118 Pierce R. Butler
    September 15, 2008

    Glen Davidson @ # 15: … a church for those who don’t believe in God. … the North Texas Church of Freethought (NTCOF) in Carrollton, a suburb of Dallas, Texas…

    Now we know why Hurricane Ike struck Texas!

  119. #119 Mez
    September 15, 2008

    Sigh. Down a related path in faith-based medicine, these incidents, sadly, happen in Australia, too: Religious mother admits to son’s death. I’d like to hear a little of the story of how the father died of a heart attack. Did they stick to the same procedure? Perhaps the other children will learn from this, but it’s a horrible way to do it.

    Tangentially, this is a weird headline. Are they expecting she’ll say he’s still alive (in this world)?

  120. #120 flame821
    September 15, 2008

    What about the OTHER uses for birth control pills/patches?

    Polycystic disease comes to mind, Pre-menstrual syndrome, some cancer patients use BCP to control hormones, often times BC is used to prevent pregnancy when the woman (or S.O.) is on a drug that would/could result in deformed fetus.

    Not only is the pharmacists an idiot, he’s ignorant of the medicines he is supposed to be licensed to dispense. And that’s without even going into the rather simple fact that BCP PREVENT the need for abortion. But as so many have pointed out, its not about the fetus, its about the control.

  121. #121 amphiox
    September 15, 2008

    Well, a woman who freely chooses to engage in sexual activity, and conceives by accident, does have some small responsibility of care towards the embryo her choices caused to be created, on the moral principle that we are all responsible for the consequences of our actions, even unintended ones, so long as we knew beforehand that said outcome was at least potentially possible.

    But that responsibility of care is contingent on effective birth control being freely available (or else it is not a completely free choice), and on the reciprocal requirement that every man who inadvertently fathers an embryo through sexual activity he consented to engage in is equally responsible (and should be compelled by law to the exact extent that the law should limit abortions for women in similar circumstance, as per the principle of gender equality) for full financial and emotional support for the resultant child, up to the point said child is able to land and keep a job and maintain a household independent of parental support.

    And even if all these conditions are fulfilled, the responsibility of care does not outweigh a woman’s right to choose what happens or does not happen to her own body.

    In the ideal world every pregnancy is planned and every child is wanted. An elective abortion to me is an ethically questionable thing, but the pro-life position is a greater evil still. In the real and imperfect world, pro-choice is the only morally tenable stand.

  122. #122 Rey Fox
    September 15, 2008

    Hmm. Wasn’t the ruler of the planet of Omicron Persei on Futurama named Lurr? Could be that our friend Llurraa is actually an alien from one of those Mormon afterlife planets confused about Earth culture.

  123. #123 Michelle
    September 15, 2008

    Accidents happens. Even a woman who follows all the cares can end up with a broken condom.

    A woman has a right to her body. To enjoy it with a guy as much as she wishes. If she procreates without wanting to, she has the right to get rid of the unwanted embryo and not get crippled for 9 months for it. If the embryo is supposedly a living individual, it is still living while sucking the life of a woman. It’s hers to decide if she wants it to or not.

  124. #124 chancelikely
    September 15, 2008

    The thing to remember about Grand Rapids is that “small town” isn’t a function of population so much as attitude. Grand Rapids is a really big small town, where the headquarters of the Christian Reformed Church resides, and where the names of the execrable founders of Amway rest on every building.

    Incidentally, I’ve patronized Kay Pharmacy (for candy and pop, not contraceptives).

  125. #125 Greg Laden
    September 15, 2008

    You can’t put lipstick on a prig.

  126. #126 amphiox
    September 15, 2008

    The level of the responsibility of care I alluded to varies with the situation. If a woman had full access to effective birth control and chose not to use it, then the responsibility is greater than if she chose to use it and it failed, but there is still some responsibility in that case so long as she knew beforehand that there was a chance that the birth control might fail.

    Under no circumstance would the level obligation ever overrule a woman’s right of self-determination, but the obligation is also never zero. I do not think it unfair to ask of women to at least consider the interests of the embryo in addition to their own when they contemplate their decision.

    And the man in question has equal obligation to support the resulting child if the woman chooses to carry it to term, or provide an equitable portion of the resources necessary (money, access, time, etc) to procure the abortion if the woman chooses that option.

  127. #127 Ray
    September 15, 2008

    Hope I’m not repeating anyone, but to paraphrase an answer that I’ve heard here before to llurra’s question (@93) “When does human life begin?” would perhaps be: approximately 2 million years ago. I seem to remember reading that the first recognizably, fully human branch of the primate tree evolved around then and the chain of life has been unbroken down to the current generation.
    (The original question I paraphrased was the more general “When does life begin?” Answer: approximately 4 billion years ago.)

    Cheers,
    Ray

  128. #128 raven
    September 15, 2008

    The pharmacies in my area are all chains, Safeway, Walmart, Walgreens, etc.. They won’t put up with that crap which is illegal in many or most states, practicing medicine without a license among others. Plus they are in the business of making money, not alienating customers.

    There were 2 independent pharmacies run by normal people. Still they have both gone out of business in the last few years. Just couldn’t compete with the chains.

    In California, this clown could and would have his license pulled. They’ve done it before which somehow cut down on the number of christofascists who try to tell others what to do.

  129. #129 SC
    September 15, 2008

    oh.my. cosmic muffin.

    I think i love you. A dead head and a Fela fan!

    Other interests include: bacon, baseball, drinking, the outdoors,… Too bad you’re married! :P

    Seriously, though, he was offensively sexist, but that and some other of his views aside I’m a big fan.

  130. #130 flame821
    September 15, 2008

    Amphiox @ 126

    Under no circumstance would the level obligation ever overrule a woman’s right of self-determination, but the obligation is also never zero. I do not think it unfair to ask of women to at least consider the interests of the embryo in addition to their own when they contemplate their decision.

    I would think it is a given that the majority of women do consider this. Along with the effect on their own lives, the lives of their families, the economic factors, the likelihood of the father staying involved, etc.

    I know of no woman who ‘just decided’ to get an abortion, many of them have spent days wracking their brains and hearts to come to a decision. (And yes, I do realize that you weren’t claiming women do this as a lark, but it does read as though you need reassurance that women are actually taking into consideration more than their dress size when they decide to abort or not – although I do appreciate the fact that you bring up the father’s responsibility too)

    Abortion is a (usually) surgical procedure, it carries risks as does any medical procedure. I find it interesting that we can still debate the usefulness and necessity of this medical procedure but nose-jobs and breast implants (which are normally done for vanity) aren’t debated at all.

  131. #131 raven
    September 15, 2008

    Peter Rooke the lying crazy:

    Nothing like destroying another person’s livelihood is there Dr. Myers? First the wife of a harmless husband who got carried away sending you an angry letter and now a principled family pharmacist..

    Rooke must be a fundie xian. He is lying, always a tipoff.

    1. The harmless husband threatened to kill Myers by beating his head in. This is a felony. There are many people in prison for making such threats. He got off way too easy.

    2. The pharmacist clown is violating the law in most states. They would pull his license here. But he isn’t keeping it secret. He has his own web site and is spamming the internet. Myers is just publishing his spam so we can be appropriately appalled. If he gets run out of business by the chains and popular opinion, that is his choice.

    Stick to Death Porn with piles of dead bodies and torture/rape fantasies. Rooke from the St Dracula church of the undead.

  132. #132 Patricia
    September 15, 2008

    #95 – Llurra – LET ME HAVE MY RIGHT TO OWN A SLAVE… You complete idiot.
    Of course if you are a True Christian, well then you have every right to have all the slaves you want – fucktard.
    Num. 31:9, Gen. 17:27, Exo. 22:3, Exo. 21:32, Lev. 25:42, 1st Kings 9:21, Exo. 21:2-7.

    #99 – Bride of Shrek, OM – I’m with you. If Llurra wins the one millionth I’m packing in my black fish nets, throwing away my corset and going home. On my way can I stop by your place? We can get shit faced drunk, sing slutty songs, smoke cigars (I’ll puke violently for added fun) and tell dirty chicken stories.

  133. #133 Dick
    September 15, 2008

    President Bush will be speaking at 3:00 PM on Monday, October 6, 2008, at:

    The Hilton Cincinnati Netherland Plaza
    35 West Fifth Street
    Cincinnati, Ohio 45202

    I know this through the Ashbrook Center in Ashland, OH, which is helping organize the event.

  134. #134 Roger
    September 15, 2008

    I read a lot of the comments, but not all… Sorry it’s getting late here in Grand Rapids, MI.

    So, I’ve driven past the pharmacy you mentioned, but have never been inside and it looks like I never will. Things certainly aren’t getting better here…

    Thanks, from an un-employed engineer in West Michigan.

  135. #135 Texas Reader
    September 15, 2008

    For those of you wondering why he objects to birth control pills: the extremists, espec right wing catholics, are pushing the idea that a fertilized egg is a person. The pill not only stops ovulation, it makes the uterine lining inhospitable to acceptance of a fertilized egg if ovulation does happen. Because it can prevent a fertilized egg from implanting they want to tag it as an abortion drug. Some nutcase in the bush regime is also pushing this concept of “life begins at fertilization” which is NOT the same as “conception.” Conception means the fertilized egg attaches.

    Yeah, they want to protect microscopic fertilized egg but they will NOT agree to any plan to guarantee medical, dental and vision care for every child in America, or a safe home, or free vacinations, etc. etc.

  136. #136 Angel Kaida
    September 15, 2008

    I’m in Ann Arbor, and I’m always horrified to see the small-town-values bullshit that lurks at most a few miles away from the college-student bubble. A most-beloved friend of mine canvassed in Plymouth, MI for the ACLU. Only the Celestial Teapot knows what his supervisors were thinking sending him there, but it was a good time. While the various renamings of the ACLU (including the Anti-Christian Liberal Union and, bafflingly, the Antichrist Lover’s League) were hilarious, the biggest facepalm moment was when a little girl asked her mother why “a bunch of atheists” would be trying to get money “in a Christian town.” While Plymouth was the worst, the canvassers didn’t get a wonderful reception from the godbotherers anywhere – even here in A2, someone spat on one of the young women and told her there was a special place in hell for people like her. So, while I’m disappointed in Grand Rapids, I can’t say I’m surprised… at all.

  137. #137 Patricia
    September 16, 2008

    For you poor souls about to sink under the dumbfuckery, let me offer a few minutes of Our Sainted Lady of Strumpetrey, the Goddess of Sluts, Marlene Dietrich:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lYqwlKKwM5I

  138. #138 The Cheerful Nihilist
    September 16, 2008

    He knows your soul, PZ, ’cause the Bible tells us so.

    Heh, it’s a line I remember from my lovely (though wacky) grandparents who were United Methodist ministers.

    I also loved the song “Jesus Loves the Little Children.” From the age of 5 or 6, I thought that was weird, but years later, having read Johnathan Swift’s “A Modest Proposal,” it made more sense.

    Hhhmmmm. I’m feeling a bit peckish right about now.

  139. #139 Falyne
    September 16, 2008

    Cheerful:

    To this day, I sometimes get an earworm of “I, I am a C-H, I am a C-H-R-I-S-T-I-A-N, and I have C-H-R-I-S-T in my H-E-A-R-T and I will L-I-V-E E-T-E-R-N-A-L-L-Y.”

    Drives you batty, that one does….

  140. #140 Falyne
    September 16, 2008

    (and, yes, I am commenting in other threads. ;-) )

  141. #141 Steven Dunlap
    September 16, 2008

    Texas Reader @135

    Think of this as a “good news/bad news” situation. The good news is that they’re so stupid it took them over 50 years to figure out how the pill works (and how to make a pseudo-scientific argument against its use). The bad news is that it’s been about 50 years since the pill came on the market.

    It was nice while it lasted. Oh, well.

    More seriously: this shows that birth control was always one of their targets. Social control dressed up as “concern for life.”

  142. #142 Patricia
    September 16, 2008

    Good night Sweethearts!

  143. #143 raven
    September 16, 2008

    A lot of this outlawing abortion and birth control is just culture war crap that many of them don’t really want. It wouldn’t even work.

    The rich and upper middle class would just fly to Europe and do some shopping as well.

    The middle class would go to Canada or Mexico.

    So who gets stuck. The usual, poor people, many of whom are brown or black. The poor minority birth rate would sky rocket. So who pays for those unplanned poor kids. Society. Society either pays big bucks in welfare or pays big bucks to scoop the kids up after unsocialized and hungry people commit crimes and end up in prison.

    As an added bonus, the USA is predicted to go 50% nonwhite by 2040. I don’t have a problem with that, the WC is already almost there. You can bet a whole hell of a lot of the christofascists do. They already fear and hate Obama for being merely 1/2 white.

    Be careful what you wish for. You might get it. That doesn’t even add in the inevitable backlash from enslaving the majority of the population, women, in enforced child bearing as second class citizens. It wasn’t popular decades ago and they aren’t going to like it now. And oh yeah, they still have the right to vote.

  144. #144 SC
    September 16, 2008

    Night, Patricia!

  145. #145 gramomster
    September 16, 2008

    Hey I’m in GR too! I’m not familiar with this pharmacy, but this could be because I’ve been without health insurance since 1996 until just the middle of this August. That aside, I’ll not be remedying the lack of familiarity any time soon.
    Perhaps there are enough GR Pharyngulites to do something? I think I’ve seen at least 4 others.
    And did you know that McSame/Evil Woman are town-halling at GRCC? This Wednesday. The tickets are gone, but I’ve seen fliers for a picket. It appears from the press release that they’re going to be at the Fieldhouse. Think I’ll put the grandboy in the stroller and mosey down. Grandboy spent his 2nd birthday at the May 14 Obama rally here, and is apparently a supporter. He still occasionally starts chanting, “Obama! Obama!” He has also appropriated a button…

  146. #146 Epistaxis
    September 16, 2008

    When does human life begin?

    At conception. And it continues in the same form for all those skin cells you slough off in the shower every morning. That’s why life isn’t the same as personhood.

  147. #147 wrpd
    September 16, 2008

    I don’t know if it is still true, but the town of Saugatuck which is close to Holland and Grand Rapids, had several gay resorts. I always thought it was hypocritical of Holland’s tourist traps to take gay-tainted money. But they did.

    My ancestors were Dutch Reformed, a conservative Calvinist denomination, but the Christian Reformed Church and its spawn were way beyond conservative hyper-Calvinists.

  148. #148 Cowcakes
    September 16, 2008

    Can he be sued under US law for false advertising? His statement on the Kay Pharmacy web page, http://www.kaypharmacy.com/#public

    “I’ll never forget what my dad taught me while I was growing up in the family business: the customer always comes first at Kay Pharmacy”

    would appear to directly contradict his email statement:

    “I thought you might be interested in seeing the recent coverage on ABC’s World News with Charles Gibson of our pharmacy’s policy to not sell contraceptives.”

    But then that is par for the course with religious nutters.

  149. #149 bastion
    September 16, 2008

    I visited the Pharmacists for Life Control Over What Women May Choose to Do with Their Own Bodies International website. http://www.pfli.org/

    I use a small locally owned and operated pharmacy, and I wanted to make sure that it wasn’t a member.

    Well, huh. What did I find?

    The “Find a Pharmacist” feature of the site lists a whopping six–yes–6, VI, seis, sechs, sze??, 1/2 dozen–pharmacies listed.

    So, is this just a really tiny group of we-know-better-than-you-and-your-doctor-do, holier-than-thouest pharmacists?

    Or are other pharmacists who are members too cowardly to list themselves?

    BTW, I’m pleased and relieved to report that my pharmacy wasn’t listed as one of the Dirty Half-dozen.

  150. #150 John C. Randolph
    September 16, 2008

    When does human life begin?

    I’d say it began when our species split off from the other apes. Or, if you’re talking about when an individual human’s life begins, I’d say that happens at conception, since that’s when you first have the full genome of the human in question.

    As far as I’m concerned, the abortion debate doesn’t hinge on when a fetus is a person, or when it becomes viable to live outside the womb, and so forth. I’d say the moral issue of whether a woman is entitled to abort a pregnancy becomes crystal clear by supposing that instead of a developing infant, the woman were connected to a full-grown adult, whose life depended on a continuous blood transfusion.

    -jcr

  151. #151 John C. Randolph
    September 16, 2008

    The “Find a Pharmacist” feature of the site lists a whopping six–yes–6, VI, seis, sechs, sze??, 1/2 dozen–pharmacies listed.

    Gee, that makes it sound like the whole “pharmacists don’t want to sell birth control” kerfuffle is merely a distraction from substantive issues, like what the hell to do about the impending collapse of the empire.

    -jcr

  152. #152 Peter Ashby
    September 16, 2008

    Llura the short answer is that life is circular so it is a chicken and egg question. Which means that any attempt to draw lines will be arbitrary and not based on any existing defined boundary. Thus allowing abortion at a time which balances rights and practicalities for the mother with knowledge about foetal viability etc with variation based on maternal jeopardy at later times. Actual people should always be valued more than potential people.

  153. #153 shonny
    September 16, 2008
    Posted by: Joe | September 15, 2008 5:57 PM
    Thats what I don’t understand about the pro-lifers.
    I mean they don’t want abortions…fine. here is a method that could dramatically affect the number of abortions in the world, and THEY ARE AGAINST IT.
    I don’t get it. birth control pills don’t kill a baby, they specifically keep it from forming to begin with.
    WTF?!

    Religion/’pro-life’ and logic in same head?
    WTF do you think they are, – rational??

  154. #154 shonny
    September 16, 2008
    Posted by: SC | September 15, 2008 5:17 PM
    This looks like a useful site about emergency contraception, by the way:
    http://ec.princeton.edu/questions/dose.html
    BoSOM – You’re married. You shouldn’t be working at all! :)

    That website should be made available to all normal people!
    Will make sex even more fun.
    As to married women not working, – who the hell is then to provide for the man, – the kids??

  155. #155 Sioux Laris
    September 16, 2008

    Shouldn’t the title read,

    “He don’ know me wery well, do he?”

    ala Bugs Bunny?

  156. #157 Dr Horrible
    September 16, 2008

    Posted by: Patricia | September 15, 2008 10:53 PM @ #132

    “We can get shit faced drunk, sing slutty songs, smoke cigars (I’ll puke violently for added fun) and tell dirty chicken stories.”

    I am interested in your ideas and wish to subscribe to your newsletter.

    hehe

  157. #158 Katkinkate
    September 16, 2008

    Anyone else fill in the customer survey form? I’m glad we don’t have this problem in Australia (yet?). Pity you guys.

  158. #159 Katkinkate
    September 16, 2008

    Only 100 posts left before the big 1 mil!

  159. #160 Kel
    September 16, 2008

    Anyone else fill in the customer survey form? I’m glad we don’t have this problem in Australia (yet?).

    I remember hearing about a small town I think in the backwaters of northern NSW where there’s only one pharmacist and he’s a catholic. Despite being sent free condoms by a company, he refuses to sell any contraceptives whatsoever. That town has one of the highest rates of teen pregnancy…

    It’s not a problem where there is competition, but in the occasional stagnant community where the church still plays a role and there’s little in the way of competition then there are still isolated pockets of problematic behaviour.

  160. #161 bunbuns
    September 16, 2008

    To Glen D (#15)
    That church sounds awesome! I need to find me one of them.

    Anyone know of anything similar around the Cambridge, MA area?

  161. #162 bunbuns
    September 16, 2008

    To PZ:
    maybe the guy knows that there’s no such thing as negative publicity. And see, you did write about it! Success in his eyes.

  162. #163 Bride of Shrek OM
    September 16, 2008

    bunbuns @ #162

    If you measure “success” by having people boycott your store, ridicule you publically and question your ethics as a medical professional on an international arena…well sure, you got us there bud.

  163. #164 SC
    September 16, 2008

    The “Find a Pharmacist” feature of the site lists a whopping six–yes–6, VI, seis, sechs, sze??, 1/2 dozen–pharmacies listed.

    Gee, that makes it sound like the whole “pharmacists don’t want to sell birth control” kerfuffle is merely a distraction from substantive issues, like what the hell to do about the impending collapse of the empire.

    -jcr

    I know, right? ‘Cause that list is a completely valid measure of the state of the provision of contraception, emergency contraception, and abortion in the US. And it’s not like there are VP candidates who oppose reproductive rights and would support the expansion of this or anything. How silly of anyone to be concerned about the state and the religious right deciding what we can and can’t do with our bodies. It’s distracting us from the real issue – the impending collapse of the empire. Because the US and the MNCs deserve an empire and have every right to it. Oh, sure, this involves oppression and killing on an enormous and ever-growing scale, wars and more wars, economic insecurity for billions, a police state at home, and the waste and destruction of the world’s natural resources. But it’s our empire, damnit, and it must be saved!

  164. #165 BoMeister
    September 16, 2008

    Looks like your website is nothing but a bunch of whiny, hate-filled bigots who border on violence and mob action. Guess you need to fully publish their identities now, as your blog so valiantly claims.

    Bottom line is this lot of nasty haters is more of the same like the author of the blog: cowards hiding behind the nebulous internet.

    At least Mike had the decency, something you may want to learn, to apologize for mis-sending his email to you. Unfortunately, like the rest of the crazy left driveby media, you forgot to mention that pertinent fact.

    Typical extremist coward communist.

    May God have mercy on you and the university fire you.

    :-)

  165. #166 CosmicTeapot
    September 16, 2008

    BoMeister

    We border on violence!!! Really.

    Who sends death threats now? Psst, the answer is the christians.

    “May God have mercy on you and the university fire you”! How would that be having mercy. Oh, I forgot, you don’t do reality very well do you.

  166. #167 Gavin McBride
    September 16, 2008

    Sounds to me like someone has been sampling a few too many of the drugs he sells :(

  167. #168 Bride of Shrek OM
    September 16, 2008

    @ # 165

    “Guess you need to fully publish their identities now, as your blog so valiantly claims.”

    Sure we’ll all post under our real names like, just for a completely random example…BoMeister.

    Stupid turd.

  168. #169 Nerd of Redhead
    September 16, 2008

    Sounds like has BoMeister been fired and is looking for somebody to take it out on. After all, blaming god gets one nowhere as he doesn’t ever answer.

  169. #170 Kel
    September 16, 2008

    May God have mercy on you and the university fire you.

    i.e. I hope God forgives you but I wish on you suffering in this life…

    how very Christian of you.

  170. #171 Kel
    September 16, 2008

    May God have mercy on you and the university fire you.

    i.e. I hope God forgives you but I wish on you suffering in this life…

    how very Christian of you.

  171. #172 Wowbagger
    September 16, 2008

    BoMeister wrote:

    Typical extremist coward communist.

    You use those words – I do not think they mean what you think they mean.

  172. #173 Nerd of Redhead
    September 16, 2008

    The communist line is always good for a laugh. I started college in the late sixties when campuses were being “radicalized” due the Viet Nam war. The communists were only one flavor of the “left”. Nowdays it just has an evil tone. The odd thing was that most of the radicals came from very capitalistic families. Their fathers were often executives for the companies they worked at.

  173. #174 Russell
    September 16, 2008

    I don’t know if anyone’s said it, (probably have) there are way too many comments these days to read them all, but their web site has this little blurb on it; “”I’ll never forget what my dad taught me while I was growing up in the family business: the customer always comes first at Kay Pharmacy.” – Unless they’re preggers, or maybe just like to get knocked up, or maybe just a bit of casual sex.

    God forbid anyone enjoying themselves.

  174. #175 Temaharay
    September 16, 2008

    Does anyone really know PZ?

  175. #176 Chaz Firestone
    September 16, 2008

    Hey PZ,

    I’m heading out later today to teach squid-torturing to my commonly-named daughter at the RNC — you in?

  176. #177 Chuck Wolber
    September 16, 2008

    He said he’d be honored to see his apostolate on “your blog”. I wonder how he feels now…

    ..Chuck..

  177. #178 MarkW
    September 16, 2008

    “It’s not a person until it’s in my phone book”.

    John C Randolph @ #150:

    the moral issue of whether a woman is entitled to abort a pregnancy becomes crystal clear by supposing that instead of a developing infant, the woman were connected to a full-grown adult, whose life depended on a continuous blood transfusion.

    Well, it seems obvious to me that you couldn’t in all conscience force the woman in that situation to continue to provide the other person with sustenance against her will. Is that what you mean or am I missing something?

  178. #179 Rev. BigDumbChimp, KoT
    September 16, 2008

    At least Mike had the decency, something you may want to learn, to apologize for mis-sending his email to you. Unfortunately, like the rest of the crazy left driveby media, you forgot to mention that pertinent fact.

    That’s quite the idiotic take on this.

    Whoops Sorry I sent that ignorant stupidity filled email to you. You can ignore the content and just forget you got it.

    Whoop!

    My bad!

    And the communist thing is hilarious. I don;t think that word means what you think it does.

  179. #180 amphiox
    September 16, 2008

    jcr #150: Permit me to split hairs with you for just a little bit. Even after conception, the parental chromosomes remain distinct and independent. That is they do not mix with one another as far as I know, and each gene on each chromosome continues to be regulated, transcribed, etc, as a separate entity. So the only thing that has really happened on a genetic level is that the two sets of chromosomes are now enclosed in a single cell membrane, which as arbitrary a distinction as any other.

    The moment when those chromosomes became individual, as in distinct from the parental chromosomes they descended from, would have to be during meiosis after recombination. So I think a equally fair (though equally arbitrary) argument would be that a human’s existence as a genetically distinct individual begins when the two gametes are first formed.

  180. #181 SC
    September 16, 2008

    The communist line is always good for a laugh.

    On a more serious note, though, I’m very worried about Bolivia. Coup-ready rightwing forces there are becoming increasingly violent, and are supported by the US government. It’s reminiscent of what happened to Allende, and it’s scary.

    http://uk.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idUKN1633229820080916

  181. #182 raven
    September 16, 2008

    BoM the Death cultist wannabe killer:

    Looks like your website is nothing but a bunch of whiny, hate-filled bigots who border on violence and mob action.

    Another christofascist moron. Who goes around the country bombing family planning clinics and killing MDs. Christian terrorists of which there are a number in the USA. Wikipedia has a page on them which the xians frequently vandalize.

    During crackergate, Myers got over 12,000 emails, mostly hate mail and probably around a hundred were death threats.

    Who flew planes into skyscrapers and killed 3,000 people. Religious fanatics, moslems to be sure. And the difference between moslem and xian fanatics? Nothing really, I’m sure if they can they will up the body count.

    One thing is crystal clear about cultists. Violence and murder is just below the surface and sooner or later it will erupt. Fundies are all about hate and that hate has to go somewhere.

    Hey BoM, go ahead and threaten me. You know you want to. Please include your name, address and phone number as well. Homeland Security is busy and they don’t need to spend a lot of time tracking down pinhead cultists. And try to be creative, “beating your head in with a baseball bat” and such are trite and clicheist. If you need help since you seem to be mentally handicapped, ask Peter Rooke. He has a thing for piles of dead bodies with torture/rape fantasies. He also probably has some real life experience. He was voted most likely to be a serial killer on the internet.

  182. #183 Naked Bunny with a Whip
    September 16, 2008

    And the difference between moslem and xian fanatics?

    The Christian ones have an organized and ludicrously well-funded military industrial complex which they use with impunity in Iraq and many other countries that don’t toe their line and can’t fight back.

  183. #184 Susan
    September 16, 2008

    I cannot wait until women learn to control their fertility with their minds– I’m convinced we’ll discover it’s possible– and then what will the patriarchs do?

  184. #185 frog
    September 16, 2008

    #150 John C. Randolph:When does human life begin?
    I’d say it began when our species split off from the other apes.

    Even that’s not clear – since the split with chimps appears to have begun at 6-5 mya, but gene flow continued until 2.5mya, when there was a chromosome rearrangement (44 to 46 chromosomes).

    Very few things in biology are clear. The desire to make them so is a very twisted idea of rationality – more scholastic than scientific. It’s how people end up getting killed.

  185. #186 Snitzels
    September 16, 2008

    #44

    I haven’t read all the comments yet, but got to Joe at #44 and had to agree heartily. See, it’s not that they just don’t want abortions happening, they don’t want women to be having non-pro-creative sex at all (unless it’s the ladies servicing the good ole boys at the RNC). I think if there were a way to forcibly keep women from having sex, period, they would find a way to make it mandatory.

  186. #187 raven
    September 16, 2008

    I cannot wait until women learn to control their fertility with their minds– I’m convinced we’ll discover it’s possible– and then what will the patriarchs do?

    They already can. They have for a century. It is called family planning and birth control and was invented by humans for humans.

    It works reasonably well. The average family size in most industrialized countries is around replacement at 2.

    Next you will probably wish for a means of rapid transportation without the effort of walking on two legs or riding a horse. I do believe somewhere that someone is using their mind to invent autos and planes.

  187. #188 frog
    September 16, 2008

    Nerd of a Redhead: The odd thing was that most of the radicals came from very capitalistic families. Their fathers were often executives for the companies they worked at.

    Doesn’t that describe Engels to a T? And Marx himself, as a matter of fact? And Bakunin was an aristocrat, wasn’t he? Lenin was well off, and so was Trotsky. I think only Stalin was a dirt poor bandit.

  188. #189 Matt Heath
    September 16, 2008

    @188… Che Guevara’s parents were major landowners, Kropotkin was an prince (FFS).

  189. #190 stevogvsu
    September 16, 2008

    It’s time like this when I’m really depressed by my decision to go to school in western Michigan. Lucky for me I have a knack for finding the hives of sane people in the great Grand Rapids area.

  190. #191 frog
    September 16, 2008

    Matt Heath:

    Che is a great example. He was from a failing aristocratic family – the kind of thing that was extremely common in mid-century Latin America. His family was well-known in Cordoba, and he got his MD degree during a period of political turbulence in Argentina.

    Did he apply his education to helping out at home? Treating the poor, being involved in democratic anti-Peronista movements in Argentina? Nahh, he was way too self-important for that!

    Castro was also from a land-owning family in Cuba, went to the best schools, and married into the Diaz-Balart family (which currently owns several seats in the US Congress, by the way). I think Ortega of Nicaragua is also a scion of a major aristocratic family there.

    I wonder if the “historical dialectic” means what folks think it means…

  191. #192 SC
    September 16, 2008

    Kropotkin was an prince (FFS).

    A title which he renounced, btw. Kropotkin gave up a life of ease for a very difficult existence (many years of it in prison and in exile) as a scientist, science writer and popularizer, and fighter for social justice. Kropotkin was a wonderful, noble human being.

  192. #193 SC
    September 16, 2008

    That reminds me. Since I haven’t yet posted an Anarchist Link o’ the Day today, I give you Stephen Jay Gould, “Kropotkin Was No Crackpot”:

    http://www.marxists.org/subject/science/essays/kropotkin.htm

    I don’t agree with Gould on everything here, and why he didn’t follow up by reading Ethics I can’t imagine, but it’s a worthwhile read.

  193. #194 Sandy (not to be confused with the other insane Sandy.
    September 16, 2008

    From Mr. Third Generation Owner’s website:

    “I’ll never forget what my dad taught me while I was growing up in the family business: the customer always comes first at Kay Pharmacy.”

    Apparently, the customer always comes first unless you’re a woman and want to have autonomy over your own life choices and your health.

    My answer to the survey:
    Personally, I would do the job I was hired to do and that is, having available medications prescribed to patients by their physicians for the wellbeing of their patients and filling those prescriptions AS I WAS HIRED TO DO. If I didn’t provide certain medications because of “personal beliefs” to the contrary, I’d find myself another career.

    I nor my family would become customers of a pharmacy whos “third generation” owner decided he would make my health and life decisions for me or my family over a personal choice decided between my physician and myself. And I certainly would not want my daughters going backward in time when OTHERS decided for them what their choices in life would be concerning their own bodies and health. You have made your CHOICE not to do your job. Now we make our CHOICE not to support your business.

  194. #195 FastLane
    September 16, 2008

    #99 – Bride of Shrek, OM – I’m with you. If Llurra wins the one millionth I’m packing in my black fish nets, throwing away my corset and going home. On my way can I stop by your place? We can get shit faced drunk, sing slutty songs, smoke cigars (I’ll puke violently for added fun) and tell dirty chicken stories.

    I’m so there. That’s almost enough to make me wish that miserable excuse for a humanbeing does win!…..almost. =)

    FWIW, I always volunteer, and usually go, to pick up my wife’s birth control pills, with the hope that some fundy whackmuffin tries not to fill it…..

  195. #196 Justin
    September 16, 2008

    Wow… it starts slowly and then it will pick up speed. Disgusting that they are able to make large gains over time by creeping up one pharmacy or clinic at a time, staying under the radar.

  196. #197 Galbinus_Caeli
    September 16, 2008

    I filled in the survey and politely suggested that the best way to improve customer service would be to improve access to contraception, including Plan B, for all his customers.

  197. #198 dubiquiabs
    September 16, 2008

    @amphiox #180

    So I think a equally fair (though equally arbitrary) argument would be that a human’s existence as a genetically distinct individual begins when the two gametes are first formed.

    Great post! Of course, this also explains why “every sperm is sacred” (and not to forget, every egg).

  198. #199 AAB
    September 16, 2008

    Are you sure a bot didn’t write you the letter. Mike whatever may have written a small script that scoures the web for key words then write email out.

  199. #200 Matt Penfold
    September 16, 2008

    Are you sure a bot didn’t write you the letter. Mike whatever may have written a small script that scoures the web for key words then write email out.

    You mean we could add spamming to his list of crimes ?

  200. #201 raven
    September 16, 2008

    Josh the authoritarian death cultist troll:

    Wow… it starts slowly and then it will pick up speed. Disgusting that they are able to make large gains over time by creeping up one pharmacy or clinic at a time, staying under the radar.

    It started slowly in California and just about died when a few pharmacists got their licenses pulled for violating state law. It didn’t help that Walmart and others fired a few for refusing to perform the job they were hired to do.

    Six pharmacies run by cultist kooks is hardly a large gain. You could find more pharacists scouring the woods for Bigfoot or waiting up at night for the lepruchuans to extort some gold out of them.

    Pharmacists are licensed to dispense drugs. Not to practice medicine or control the lives of women they don’t even know.

    Incidently the leaders of the Death Cultists don’t walk their talk. A healthy woman with modern medicine can easily have 10 or 20 kids. Dobson has 4, Robertson 2, Bush 2, Cheney 2?, and so on. The days when people spawned like guppies, tossed them out into the pond, and hoped a few survived are long over with. Except at Kays in GR, Michigan.

  201. #202 Hockey Bob
    September 16, 2008

    How can this fraud say he’s “pro-life”, if he sells tobacco products?

    Fundies are stupid idiots.

  202. #203 Interrobang
    September 16, 2008

    I know a lot of my fellow liberal/atheist buds don’t like it, but the fact is, I feel that purely elective abortions after the first term are morally compromised

    And you’re posting under the handle Greg Peterson, which probably means you’ll never be in the situation of having to make the decision about what to do about an unintended pregnancy. In other words, nobody who actually will be in that situation ought to give a shit whether you think it’s “morally compromised” or not; your life isn’t on the line — ours are.

    Your part of that decision comes about when you decide whether or not you’re going to wear a condom, and if you decide not, well, if you go leaving your gametes in other people’s reproductive tracts, you’ve kind of lost the right to dictate to them what to do with them.

  203. #204 Rrr
    September 16, 2008

    Incidently the leaders of the Death Cultists don’t walk their talk. A healthy woman with modern medicine can easily have 10 or 20 kids. Dobson has 4, Robertson 2, Bush 2, Cheney 2?, and so on.

    I appreciate your use of the interrobang there. It seems to me, Mr Cheney’s aim is none too good…

  204. #205 Rev. BigDumbChimp, KoT
    September 16, 2008

    It seems to me, Mr Cheney’s aim is none too good…

    Yeah just ask Harry Whittington

  205. #206 Craig
    September 16, 2008

    Hey wait a sec–I know we all disagree with him, but to wish him out of business? He has as much right to run his store the way he sees fit. I normally agree with about 99% of your posts, PZ, but this one crosses a line with me. Having spent time out of work, desperate to find a job, it is a horrible thing to wish on anyone.

    As a symbolic gesture, I won’t be checking back at this blog for at least a week. I know that will mean nothing to you, but I don’t like to reward what I feel is cruel behavior.

    Respectfully

  206. #207 Die Anyway
    September 16, 2008

    As much as I dislike the guy for his stance and as much as I agree with PZ that his store should be boycotted, I think he has an out on the filling-the-prescription issue. The formulary (list of drugs carried) in a small, family-owned drug store will certainly not be every drug on the market. If he doesn’t have the drug (bc pills) on his shelf he can’t fill the prescription. It becomes just one of thousands of drugs he doesn’t carry and for which he must send the customer to a competitor. Unless there is some law that says he must carry certain drugs,I think his choice of formulary is up to him regardless of whether we think his reason is appropriate or not.

  207. #208 Patricia
    September 16, 2008

    Holy shite! That #165 is a piece of work. Ewww.

  208. #209 amphiox
    September 16, 2008

    Craig #206: You’re right, he has the right to run his store as he sees fit.

    But we as consumers have the right not to patronize his business as we see fit.

    And we as consumer advocates (and every consumer has to right to be a consumer advocate) have every right to encourage others not to patronize his business as we see fit.

    We have a vested interest in businesses like his not spreading widely through the marketplace. Boycott and advocacy of boycott is the tool provided to us by the market economy to accomplish this. We have every right to use it, as we see fit.

  209. #210 amphiox
    September 16, 2008

    dubiquiabs #198:
    Of course every sperm is sacred, as is every egg. As is every dandruff flake (skin cell), every spittle fleck (cheek mucosal cell), urine droplet (bladder wall cell), fecal pellet (gut mucusal cell), shed hair with follicle, teardrop, sweat particle, exhaled breath, etc.

    It’s all sacred. As sacred as the cracker, and as equally deserving of respect.

  210. #211 dubiquiabs
    September 16, 2008

    @ Craig, # 206

    Your kind of concern has been amply addressed in this here blog. Since you may not have had the time to read the relevant responses, here’s another try.

    Being a pharmacist is different from being a sales clerk in a hardware store. Pharmacists are health professionals who practice their trade under a license that requires them to render services to the public, within a legal framework that does not permit selective filling of prescriptions, depending on the pharmacist’s religious or other delusional ideations.

    If any of these Koelzer-type bastards tried to pull this in my neighborhood, I’d do my best to get him fined or get his license revoked ASAP, unless he demonstrably and dependably lived up to the agreement on which his license is based. If he ended up out of a job, it would be a consequence of his own unprofessional and unethical behavior.

  211. #212 karl
    September 16, 2008

    Wonder how much of a “love donation” it costs to bring him to speak at your church?

  212. #213 Rev. BigDumbChimp, KoT
    September 16, 2008

    Wonder how much of a “love donation” it costs to bring him to speak at your church?

    Love donations are exactly the things that get people needing the very thing he won’t give them.

  213. #214 amphiox
    September 16, 2008

    Die Anyway #207:
    The key to your argument is the statement “send the customer to a competitor” As a provider of health-care, a pharmacists is ethically bound to ensure that the customer receives the needed service. If he himself is incapable of rendering that service, for whatever reason, he MUST provide, in good faith, a reasonably easy way to access a colleague who can.

    If he cannot do so (for example if the town is so small that his is the only pharmacy) then he is ethically bound to either ensure that he does indeed carry the pertinent medication in his formulary, or, if he does not, to purchase the required medication on special order and ensure timely delivery, at his own expense.

    That said, a pharmacist isn’t the same as a Burger King employee. He’s not supposed to just rubber stamp prescriptions or simply follow doctor’s orders unquestioningly. Otherwise we might as well just have vending machines for drugs. He is supposed to, and receives the training to do so, apply is own clinical judgement in each case with regards to the necessity and safety of the medication in question for the patient in question. He acts as essentially the last back-up safety net against medication error for the benefit of the patient.

    The application of clinical judgement is regulated by the standards of his profession, and subject to sanction if abused.

  214. #215 Greg Peterson
    September 16, 2008

    Interrobang, you make sort of a good point. I mean, I am a male. But since the issue is often discussed as a matter of public policy and I am a part of the public, I don’t feel utterly constrained from stating my opinion (which also included a clear statement in favor of safe and legal abortions).

    However, I was actually in a position to at least discuss abortion as a viable (and attractive) option once. I was involved in an unintended pregnancy (which resulted, incidentally, in a fantastic kid who now attends the University of Minnesota). The mom wanted to know how I felt about it. I guess she understood that I really did have some stake in the decision, emotionally and financially. I am far from pretending that the male has anywhere near the “skin in the game” that the female does, but I can’t agree that I had no interest whatever in the issue. I said at the time, as I would strongly reiterate now, that the decision must be left up to the woman. I don’t think that’s identical to a claim that males must have no opinion whatever.

  215. #216 JerryFLA
    September 16, 2008

    I’m a pharmacist myself (15yrs) and this ‘conscience’ crap drives me to the edge.

    These pharmacists’ behavior constitutes a breach of duty and they deserve to be summarily fired. Of course they have a perfectly viable way to stay true to their personal beliefs: find another profession.

    No pharmacists, except the usual close-minded and deluded fundamentalist, would find it acceptable for a fellow pharmacist to withhold otherwise legal services. Additionally, it would be considered outrageously unprofessional for a pharmacist to personally comment on patient therapy – let alone try to impose their personal sense of morality.

    Not only do these little pricks deserve to be fired but I feel embarrassed that they are part of my profession. They need to be bitch-slapped and then permanently stripped of their licenses.

    To me personally this is a great example of how much ‘progress’ these Christian fundamentalist have made trying to impose their silly bullshit upon everyone else.

  216. #217 Buford
    September 16, 2008

    Too many comments to keep close track of who said what – I’ve read all 216 posted so far – so I apologize for not having the exact quotes and attributions. But, on the subject of rights and responsibilities:

    If the male partner has NO rights to the decision re: abortion or not, then he cannot bear equal responsibility for the child.

    I’m not saying I disagree with the woman having the choice.

    I’m not saying that the man has no responsibility for the child. (That is, he has some responsibility)

    I agree that both share responsibility for the sex act and its consequences – the pregnancy.

    But if one is constrained from making the choice of what to do about the pregnancy, one should have less responsibility for the outcome of that choice.

    So, the man should not have an equal responsibility for raising the child to adulthood.

  217. #218 ildi
    September 16, 2008

    raven, I think you were a little too hard on Susan #184, in that no birth control is 100% perfect, and I, too, have fantasized about how nice it would be if women ovulated consciously (like many other bodily functions I am too much of a lady to mention).

  218. #219 Eve
    September 16, 2008

    Re: # 217 – So, the man should not have an equal responsibility for raising the child to adulthood.

    He doesn’t. The most he is obligated by law to do that I’m aware of – and that’s only if the woman decides to include him, and I’m not sure how it varies from state to state – is pay a certain amount of child support for a certain amount of time. He doesn’t even have to correspond or visit with the child, let alone its mother, except to provide the court-appointed sum on a regular basis, unless he wants to and she agrees. If he disappears successfully, he may never even have to pay a dime.

    I also know of many women who got pregnant without meaning to, and never even told the men who got them pregnant that they were. One in particular is currently rearing her child as a single mother with no contact whatsoever, not even monetary, with the biological father (he was physically abusive and she completely cut ties with him before discovering she was pregnant). It’s hard to be off the hook in terms of parenting responsibility any more completely…

    Now, if he does want a greater role in the child’s life and upbringing and the woman has a problem with that, that’s a different discussion and not the one you brought up.

  219. #220 amphiox
    September 16, 2008

    Re: Greg Petersen, Interrobang, various posts:

    What right do I, as a male, have with regards to expressing an opinion on this subject? I have a brain, capable of human thought. I have developed, through experience and the teachings of people I respect, an ethical sense. I have as much right as anyone to hold an opinion on any ethical question. I most certainly have the right to post it on a blog. I have as much stake as any other member of the human species on questions regarding the production of the next generation of our species.

    As for a man directly involved, to say that he has no right to any part in the decision to abort is as offensive as saying that the woman has not the right to choose to abort. The man in question is facing the possibility of fatherhood, and this is one of the most life-changing events a man can ever face in his life!

    He has a stake in the decision. He has the right to have input in the choice. What he must accept is that his stake is the lesser one, and his input has appropriately less weight. The “veto” power, as it were, belongs to the woman.

    His responsibility is commensurate with the weight of his input. That is to say it remains less than that of the woman from the moment of intercourse all the way up to the moment of birth (if the pregnancy is continued). At that point, the responsibility and right to input for both partners becomes equal.

  220. #221 amphiox
    September 16, 2008

    ildi #218:
    I’d have to say that in all likelihood even if by some future technological breakthrough it became possible for women to control ovulation consciously, by thought alone (one can already do it consciously with the aid of medications), even that would not necessarily be 100% birth control.

    There are a number of things people can do with conscious thought alone right now (like figuring out exact change, for example). How many of those are 100% reliable? What if you forgot, or got distracted, or had a bad day at the office?

  221. #222 Susan
    September 16, 2008

    ildi:

    I, too, have fantasized about how nice it would be if women ovulated consciously

    A friend of mine in High School told me her period came on the 8th of every month “like clockwork” and I thought, “Really? An arbitrary man-made time-organizing structure controls your hormonal cycle?” Then I read an article about a woman who was placed in a deep mine for many months as part of a sensory deprivation experiment. She had her periods when she thought she was supposed to have them, not when, based on her history and the actual passage of time, she should have.

    I deduced that I could control my cycle. I’ve had 4-6 a year, except when I was trying to get pregnant, when all of a sudden, magically, I had 12 a year. After I had two kids, I went back to 4-6/yr. Sooner or later some brilliant researcher will explain it all; I doubt I’m unusual. Women’s cycles are all over the map, and I’ll bet our brains and expectations have something to do with it.

  222. #223 TGAP Dad
    September 16, 2008

    I used to live in a nearby small town about 20 miles West of Grand Rapids, and worked in G.R. I can assure you that the Dutch/Christian Reformed Church holds powerful sway in that area. We call it the Bible Belt of Michigan. Here’s the comment I posted on the pharmacy’s survey:

    “Carry and properly dispense contraceptives – oral and barrier, as well as Plan B. These contraceptives work BY PREVENTING THE RELEASE OF THE OVUM. This means that CONCEPTION NEVER TAKES PLACE (hence the term “contraceptive”) thus there is no zygote to abort. The claim that oral contraceptives abort a viable zygote has never been supported by a single published, peer-reviewed study. There are voluminous studies to support the fact that the ovum is not released.

    If you are against abortion, that’s a different story, and a morally-defensible one. But you do yourself, and your cause, a disservice when you lie about this issue.

    And while we’re on the subject, why do you not sell condoms? Is it because you believe that condoms cause abrtions also? You do realize that if sperm and ovum do not meet, that there can be no conception, right? How do you justify this decision, then?

    Is it possibly because what you are against is sexual behavior that violates YOUR moral code? Do you not want people in your community to have sex for any purpose other than procreation? Do you realize that these decisions are theirs, not yours?

    By the way: I assume you still dispense anti-inflammatory and antibiotics, correct? Are you aware that many of these (along with numerous other drugs) HAVE been shown to cause spontaneous abortions? Will you send your infected patients, who MIGHT be pregnant, away with their prescriptions unfilled?

  223. #224 llanitedav
    September 17, 2008

    amphiox #126
    “The level of the responsibility of care I alluded to varies with the situation. If a woman had full access to effective birth control and chose not to use it, then the responsibility is greater than if she chose to use it and it failed, but there is still some responsibility in that case so long as she knew beforehand that there was a chance that the birth control might fail.”

    You mean the less responsible she is, the greater her responsibility?

    Kind of self-defeating, isn’t it?

  224. #225 Ex-drone
    September 17, 2008

    Can a Pastafarian grocer refuse to sell tomato sauce?

  225. #226 Lauren Cocilova
    September 17, 2008

    Totally just feedbacked the crap out of him. Ahhh… Spreading the Word of the Wise maketh me so contented…

  226. #227 David
    September 17, 2008

    So proud. So sure of his faith.
    I bet I could go into his den and find ear-candles, homeopathic remedies of all sorts, lots of nice little pamphlets to help guide me.
    What we in Oz call a Wanker.

  227. #228 Ro
    September 17, 2008

    I have endometriosis. A painful disease that is treated with contraceptives. Like most women with this disease – I am infertile. I do not take contraceptives to prevent pregnancy, I take them to relieve some pretty horrible symptoms.

  228. #229 Lisa
    September 17, 2008

    Ladies, and you know who you are.

    Here is my Modest Proposal.

    I menstruated for um…(count county countiness)…40 years before having my uterus whipped out. 40 x 12 – 480 shotgunned babies, give or take a few.

    What we all need to do is start shipping our saturated pads and tampons to idiots like this nostril-goober, and ask them to make sure they provide the protopregnancies with appropriate burials, etc. Every zygote is sacred you know.

    I truly do wish I’d thought of this in my menstrual years, but I was much stupider then. I swear, this hysterectomy has increased my IQ by about 45 points.

    Also, do go to the link and give this fellow feedback. By the way, does “reprehensible fucktard” have alternative spellings?

  229. #230 Eve
    September 17, 2008

    Re: # 229 – Yes, Lisa! Because all ova are potential human beings in potentia. Or co-precursors to potential human beings. Or something like that…

    What a wilfully ignorant, patronizing jerk this so-called pharmacist is. He’d probably refuse to sell me the micronized natural progesterone that I take to control my adenomyosis on the grounds that it – well, interferes with my doG-run lady parts or something. “‘coz doG wants you to bleed out, bitch!”

  230. #231 Falyne
    September 17, 2008

    I’d like to take this opportunity to give a shoutout to my bestest most wonderfullest friend EVAR: Nuvaring!

    Unlike the pill, you only have to think about it once a month (or when somebody else… becomes confused). You’re TOLD to take it out after three weeks, have a very very light period, and put in a new one the next month. This is akin to how the fourth week of the pill actually consists of placebos, for the same effect. This isn’t a “real” period, actually, as you never ovulate. It’s really only there to make us ‘feel normal’.

    BUT. If you just leave the thing in for an extra week, this whole fake period thing? Never happens. I haven’t bled out my crotch in over two years, and I am a happy happy happy person. ^_^

  231. #232 Greg Peterson
    September 18, 2008

    I’m just commenting in the wind here because no one’s ever going back to this post ever again, but I just wanted to clarify something, regarded to my (ill-advised) use of the term “morally compromised.” In context I seem to imply that it is the woman who is making the compromise, and that us utterly unfair. For a culture (and I’m looking at you, theocrats) ever to put a woman in a position where a later-term abortion seems the best or only option, we all share in that compromise. It would unfair in the extreme to saddle the women with sole MORAL responsibility when they are often ignorantly and unfairly put into this position by others.

  232. #233 Florentius
    September 19, 2008

    “Mike Koelzer is a contemptible, sanctimonious ass.”

    I see you’re projecting again, eh Prof?

  233. #234 Grace
    September 19, 2008

    The Prof apparently thinks tolerance means that everyone must agree with him exactly!!

  234. #235 Rev. BigDumbChimp, KoT
    September 19, 2008

    The Prof apparently thinks tolerance means that everyone must agree with him exactly!!

    And Grace thinks that her reading comprehension skills are up to par!!

  235. #236 Piltdown Man
    September 19, 2008

    They say Mike Koelzer has been receiving threatening e-mails.

    Must be those Catholics again.

  236. #237 John Sherman
    January 23, 2009

    I am an atheist. And I support a woman’s right to get an abortion. But I am also a Libertarian. Ultimately, I believe in individual rights, including this poor, sad, pharmacist. If he doesn’t want to sell contraceptives, for whatever reason, that’s his right, and I respect his rights (if not his choices) as much as I respect the rights of any human being. If I lived in Grand Rapids, I would not patronize his store, but I wouldn’t protest it either. The answer is simple. Just go to another pharmacy!

  237. #238 Steve_C
    January 23, 2009

    How about this… He chooses a different profession.

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