The front-page headline in Monday's paper "Morning-after pill denied; suit follows" baffled me. How can a valid prescription be denied? But as I read the details of that article and the follow-up articles throughout the week, I went from baffled to angry. Andrea Anderson's request never should have been denied. The fact that her suit against the pharmacist resulted in a jury trial costing Minnesota taxpayers money should make us all angry, but more importantly the fact that her sexual history and her personal/confidential therapy records were brought up as part of the defense is outrageous and should scare every one of us no matter where your reproductive opinions lie.
Here is what matters: Is Ella a legal/approved drug? Yes. Was the prescription written by an authorized/licensed provider? Yes. Is Thrifty White in the business of filling prescriptions? Yes. Did Thrifty White hire George Badeaux as a pharmacist whose responsibilities include filling valid prescriptions? Yes. Did Badeaux fulfill his responsibility by filling Anderson's valid prescription? No. Case closed.
How Badeaux felt about the actual drugs or the effects of the prescriptions presented to him was irrelevant. If he applied for and accepted a job as a pharmacist, he needed to fulfill all of the job, not just the parts he liked. No one was making him take this job. If it didn't align with his beliefs, he could have chosen another line of work. And if Thrifty White wanted to support Badeaux's decision to not fill certain legal/valid prescriptions, as a condition of operating as a pharmacy, it should be required to have another pharmacist on duty at all times to fill the prescriptions that Badeaux refuses to. They too had a responsibility to fulfill here.
Badeaux stated that he is a Christian and respects every human being. The only human being on the other side of this case is Anderson, and Badeaux did not respect her or her right to obtain a legal, validly prescribed medication.
Vicki Pond, St. Louis Park
Don't rest so easy, Minnesota
"Kansans vote to protect right to abortion" read the headline on Aug. 3. While this was a significant vote for women's rights in an extremely conservative state, we in Minnesota should not breathe a collective sigh of relief quite yet. It is possible those same rights could easily be amended out of our own state Constitution.
Simple majorities of both chambers of our Legislature can propose amendments to our state Constitution that would appear on the next general election ballot. Just 10 years ago, state legislators, knowing they could not overcome a certain veto by then-Gov. Mark Dayton, avoided the normal legislative process by placing two amendments on the 2012 ballot. One required photographic voter ID, and the other limited legal marriage to being between one man and one woman. Out of close to 3 million votes cast, the former was defeated by 110,000 votes, and 40,000 blank ballots counted against it. The latter was defeated by 177,000 votes, with 50,000 left blank. Both came dangerously close to winning.
If Gov. Tim Walz wins re-election in November, but the Senate and House fall to politicians bent on abrogating human rights, is there any doubt they will try this again on the 2024 ballot? Democrats must win both chambers in 2022. If not, our "safe" state for these rights might well see another significant challenge to our freedoms come 2024, especially amid the deluge of misinformation that usually accompanies such elections.
David Thomsen, Eden Prairie
The Aug. 2 Kansas abortion vote highlights how awfully the U.S. Supreme Court has erred in overturning Roe v. Wade. Pro-life advocates are now arguing that they will have to work harder to win at the ballot box. That is likely true. They will have to work harder, and they may win in some states this year. But next year they may lose again. They may win again the year after that, but then they may lose again the year after that year. There will never be agreement between the pro-lifers and the pro-choicers of the right of women to control their own medical decisions. The imprudence of the Supreme Court to decree that partisan and religious-based groups should somehow determine a woman's right to control her own body, and then, in addition, to permit potential prison sanctions when a medical decision fails to satisfy pro-life standards, is worthy of a movement to restructure the court and the process of judicial selection.
Consider this hypothetical (although there can be many others): John Doe and Mary Roe may be pro-lifers, but their daughter may want an abortion. Would John and Mary support a prison sentence for their daughter? Is their love for their daughter and their daughter's other three children so shallow that they would be willing to deprive the grandchildren of their daughter's love and affection while she serves out her prison time? How would a prison sentence affect the children's mental health? How would a prison sentence affect the family financial welfare? How important is it that daughter's children have their mother with them at their young ages? How would the children manage in school when their classmates know that their mother is in prison? If daughter's husband approved of the abortion, would he also be imprisoned?
It is difficult to imagine what the justices were thinking when they allocated medical decisionmaking and related prison time to ever-changing political processes. There can never be stability in that result. The justices chose to facilitate processes potentially providing for imprisonment of women who made medical decisions that were nobody's business but their own. The court deserves our contempt and the process that facilitated judicial selection deserves re-evaluation.
Thomas W. Wexler, Edina
The writer is a retired judge.
Better advice: Work the job market
When reading through Monday's article "To beat inflation, start by reviewing how you spend money" I couldn't but help notice statements like "Even if you've cut until it hurts, you're going to have to look for additional trims" followed by such advice as "take in a roommate" and cut "unnecessary car trips." Besides being alarmed by this, I also couldn't help thinking, why is the response to suddenly not being able to live within your means to cut your expenses more? Why is the response to lower your standard of living? You aren't at fault for these rising costs. Most likely you, like many others, work hard for your money, and you should be able to live a good, dignified life.
From what I have read in this newspaper over the last few months, unemployment in Minnesota is the lowest of all 50 states, and there is a need for workers across many job sectors.
Instead of printing more articles about how you need to sacrifice your standard of living, it would be nice to see more focus on how to get that well-deserved raise or how to market yourself for that better job. Just my two cents, I suppose, but from what I have seen, the job market is looking better than it has in years for someone looking for employment. It would be nice to see more focus on the mental and social tools someone could employ to make their situation better.
Alex Tushie-Lessard, Lakeville