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View Diary: Target Says, "We Won't Serve You" (265 comments)

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  •  Here's what they will send you back: (4.00)
    I got this in response to a letter I sent them last week, as did the person who wrote this diary today:

    Dear Target Guest,

    Target is extremely disappointed that Planned Parenthood is spreading misleading information about an alleged incident at a Target pharmacy in Missouri and our policies on emergency contraception.  The accounts being reported are inaccurate and exaggerated. Our policy is comparable to that of many other national retailers and the recommendations of the American Pharmacists Association.    

    Target consistently ensures that prescriptions for emergency contraception are filled. As an Equal Opportunity Employer, we also are legally required to accommodate our team members' sincerely held religious beliefs as required by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. In the unusual event that a Target pharmacist's sincerely held religious beliefs conflict with filling a guest's prescription for emergency contraception, Target policy requires our pharmacists to take responsibility for ensuring that the guest's prescription is filled in a timely and respectful manner. If it is not done in this manner, disciplinary action will be taken.

    Target abides by all state and local laws and, in the event that other laws conflict with our policy, we will follow the law.

    We appreciate the opportunity to clarify our position and correct misinformation.


    Jennifer Hanson
    Target Executive Offices

    (And I might take the liberty of reposting my comment from that diary today:)

    Target has NO case, in my opinion.  And people above have stated many good reasons why.

    But here's another thing -- how does a person PROVE "sincerely held religious beliefs?"  What's the standard?  

    Can people make up damned near anything they want and call it a "sincerely held religious belief?"   Or -- before they embarrass a customer and waste her or his time -- are they required to have on some Target or government file what their specific religious beliefs ARE, with specific canonical backup from their particular church / temple / denomination?

    Moreoever, are SOME religions acceptable in this scheme, and others not?   Who's in charge of overseeing this whole bloody mess?

    And how does one measure "sincerity?"  Can I get an answer on that from the Target legal department?

    The way Target states it, seems that anyone can claim anything is a "sincerely held religious belief" when convenient.   If, as someone said above, an anti-gay bigot just didn't want to dispense HIV drugs to the nasty homos, all he'd have to do is tell Target he "sincerely" doesn't believe that gays deserve medication.   And Target would be OK with this.

    Maybe we should all get part time jobs at Target and test their self-righteous excuse.  

    Maybe I'll declare that I'm a Quaker, and when someone tries to buy a Hollywood DVD that has too much violence, I'll refuse to sell it to them.  

    Or maybe I'll tell Target I SINCERELY believe in the social gospel of Jesus about helping the poor(which indeed I do), and when people try to buy products that are made in third-world sweatshops, I won't let them purchase those items.  

    How long do you think Target would let me keep the job?  

    I wouldn't last a week.   They're hypocrites.  Their issue of "sincerely held religious beliefs" is confined to one area only:  women's sexuality.  

    What a sick joke.

    •  You got a response? (4.00)
      I got a credit card offer.  No, I'm not kidding.  Within 48 hours of my email an offer for a Target Credit Card was sent to me.

      Lazy bastards.

      I gave them a PS:

      Christmas is coming and you WILL feel the pinch.

    •  also -- can any lawyers help here? (none)
      Is THIS just a bunch of crap?  From Target's response to my complaint, as copied above:

      "As an Equal Opportunity Employer, we also are legally required to accommodate our team members' sincerely held religious beliefs as required by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964."

      It sounds like a VERY bogus interpretation of the Civil Rights Act.  Especially since other stores don't seem to be bending over backwards to accomodate the rightwingers in this country, and they haven't been brought to court for violating the Civil Rights Act, as far as I know.

      Since I live in the same town as Target's national headquarters (Minneapolis, MN.) I'm thinking of contacting my local ACLU and seeing if there's a case to be made against Target.  Surely Target can't RANDOMLY refuse to serve certain customers, based on the whims of their employees.  And unless there is a very solid policy of what constitutes "sincere religious beliefs" or not, then it is completely random.

      •  Even if it were right (none) I show above, it would be perfectly possible to accomodate the tech's religious beliefs without even letting the customer know.

        That they did not in the original case speaks volumes.  They value the right wing's dollars more than ours.  Period.

        Rubus Eradicandus Est.

        by Randomfactor on Wed Oct 26, 2005 at 04:49:26 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  yes, and not only that: (none)
          ...But they're pretty much denying that the original case was even true.  From their form letter response, copied above:

          "Target is extremely disappointed that Planned Parenthood is spreading misleading information about an alleged incident at a Target pharmacy in Missouri"

          Of course, they WON'T say what part of the infomration is "misleading," and what is "alleged."  They've just adopted the rightwing tactic of smearing without provoding facts.

          It's time for an organized boycott of Target.

    •  Jebus! (none)
      They are citing to TITLE VII?!?!?

      What complete and utter bullshit!

      They may as well cite to the 13th Amendment.... cause... to "force" the pharmacists to do their job would be like slavery.

    •  P.S. Why it is complete Bullshit (4.00)
      Legislation is CURRENTLY under consideration in Congress.  The stupidly named "Workplace Religious Freedom Act" would AMEND Title VII to redefine when and how employers must accommodate an employee's religious practices.  Why does Title VII need amending you ask?

      Sorry for the caps.. I am pissed.

      btw... The WRFA has a couple of decent goals, but it has been hijacked by the talibangilists.

      •  thank you for the information (none)
        "Sorry for the caps.. I am pissed."

        Me too, friend.  I'm goddamned fed up with the phoney rightwing moralists.  If Jesus came back today, they'd string him up again and then brag about it on Fox News.

        Even worse than them, though:  the cowardly corporate bastards who keep letting the wingnuts intrude on our lives.   They must be PUNISHED where it hurts most: in their WALLETS.  (Sometimes only caps will do the trick.)

        BOYCOTT TARGET!!! And let 'em know why.

    •  More on Title VII (none)
       in practical terms, Title VII does not offer guaranteed protection in the context of protecting a pharmacist's conscience. Although the employer must make reasonable accommodations in light of the pharmacist's abortion position, if an accommodation places an undue hardship on the employer's business, the employer will not be culpable under Title VII for not implementing it. Further, the Supreme Court has interpreted undue hardship as any "greater than de minimus cost or imposition upon" the employer's business, including co-workers.

      17 J.L. & Health 77

      Translation, Target is full of shit and is lying to you.

    •  Title VII -- only Christians benefit? (none)

      I don't get Target relying on Title VII here.  As others have posted the case law seems to show that if accomodating the belief has even a small business impact, that's enough to get the business off the hook.

      What, exactly, is the difference then between letting pharmacists send customers elsewhere to pick up EC / birth control presicriptions, and allowing the orthdox Jew at the checkstand to refuse to ring up pork products so long as he tells the customers they go to JoBob's Pig Palace down the road?  Or the Christian Scientist examples others have given.

      Unless Target is willing to let its employees decide willy nilly what they will or will not sell, it would seem that they are applying this rule in a discriminatory fashion:  abortion opponents get to exercise their particular views, other religiously motivated groups do not.

    •  I got that same response today (4.00)
      Riled me up, too.

      Here's what I wrote back:

      Does this mean that:

      --A cashier (on religious grounds) can refuse to ring up a condom purchase if she believes that sex is sinful without procreative intent?

      --A Target eatery worker (on religious grounds) can refuse to sell someone a hot dog if he believes eating meat is sinful?

      --A pharmacist (perhaps a Christian scientist) can refuse to dispense any medications AT ALL because she believes medicine interferes with God's will?

      Where does it stop? Your position makes no sense whatsoever. You are opening a can of worms that will allow religious beliefs to dictate what can and cannot be sold. At the very least, you will frustrate and perhaps embarrass your customers, some of whom might be in dire straits (i.e. a rape victim needing emergency contraception).

      Change your position, or I will not return to Target, a store I have come to love. There are alternatives.

      You cannot allow the radical Christian Right to dictate MY shopping experience. I will not have it.

    •  Title VII Argument is BS (none)
      Clever, particularly because they are trying to fight back with seemingly liberal values, but BS nonetheless.  

      A policy such as the one of CVS described above requiring all pharmacists to fill all lawful prescriptions is absolutely neutral as to religion and religious practices.  As applied, the policy may have the affect of burdening religious beliefs in some instances.  The company is only required to "reasonably accommodate" such burdens, if at all.  If another pharmacist is present who is willing, that is reasonable.  But they are not required by law to put 2 pharmacists in every store at all times, or to allow people to refuse to do their jobs.  The numerous examples given in this thread of people refusing to do their jobs for religous reasons demonstrate the fallacy of this argument.  sent an e-mail threatening to take my business elsewhere.  I hope they send me this response so I can explain to them exactly how stupid and misleading it is.

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