Pseudoephedrine Restrictions Nothing To Sneeze At

-By Frederick Meekins

Each winter without fail, the flu sends millions to the local pharmacy in search of some kind of relief. However, it won’t be this pesky virus that will give you a headache and make your stomach churn.

In order to purchase pseudoephedrine, consumers must now produce a photo ID (something that is apparently an outrage to require illegal aliens to do when accused of a crime) with these details added into a computer database tracking how much and often you purchase this perfectly legal substance. It is claimed that this procedure is necessary as a result of the meth epidemic sweeping across the country since pseudoephedrine is an ingredient used to make this drug.

While methamphetamine might be illegal, pseudoephedrine is not and is available over the counter in smaller doses. If the nanny state wants to restrict access to this substance, why not make it unavailable in its entirety without a prescription or enact an outright prohibition all together.

It could be argued that there are already restrictions on other products deleterious to bodily health such as cigarettes and booze. However, the regulations stipulating how these products are to be dispersed are not part of the Patriot Act nor are (as far as I know since I have never purchased either) the details of the photo ID necessary to purchase them entered into a computer database.

And at least with a six pack of beer, you can actually caresses or fondle the package before finalizing the purchase. Simple cold pills are now concealed behind the counter and one must bow and scrape before authorities in order to be granted access to them, no doubt as part of yet another training exercise to further condition a once free people into acquiescing control over additional areas of their lives to the technocrats wielding power.

What is to prevent these kinds of restrictions from being applied to additional legal products “our betters” have deemed communally irresponsible? For while shoppers have to surrender their most private information just for a bit of sinus relief, condoms hang on the wrack just a few aisles away with anyone free to thumb through them.

Americans are constantly reminded that we must endure these embarrassing indignities for the sake of public health. If that is the case, then why shouldn’t we be required to produce a marriage license before being permitted to purchase a prophylactic?

After all, in the case of decongestants, we are being inconvenienced because of the small percentage that abuse a legitimate product. Then shouldn’t similar safeguards be put in place in reference to a product that, whether we want to admit it or not, all of us could be tempted into using illicitly? After all, in terms of the costs, fornication likely surpasses the expense caused by abused Sudafed tablets as evidenced by the lives shattered by sexually transmitted diseases, welfare payments to unwed mothers, and the conception of the next generation of meth addicts who will end up strung out on this chemical trash because their parents are to busy out whoring around rather than raising the babies they have made.

Some may not care one way or the other if the government steps in to regulate either of these errant behaviors, thinking that their own exemplary character will prevent them from falling under the surveillance of government operatives. However, even though at this moment this manner of draconian regulation is directed towards behaviors most would consider social pathologies, it won’t be long until this kind of bureaucratic procedure is applied to other basic human behaviors no sane person would have any qualms about.

According to a piece of legislation at one time submitted to the Mississippi legislature, it would be illegal for a licensed restaurant to serve obese patrons. Some are quick to point out that the measure quickly died in light of the public outcry against it.

Maybe so for now. But does anyone honestly believe that this will be the last time we hear something like this?

This measure or something like it will be proposed again and again in legislative bodies across the country until it is no longer news and is quietly enacted without much fanfare. Or, as in the case of homosexuality and assorted abridgments of liberty such as high taxes and government agents interrogating you over how many toilets you have in your home, most Americans will still oppose the advance of these policies within their own hearts and minds but their resistance will be so eroded that the will just accept the regimented status quo without much protest. The dispirited will conclude there is little point in speaking up anyway.

Preventing drug abuse is an important health policy concern. However, no legitimate interest is served by treating the entire population as potential suspects without a single hint of probable cause.
Dr. Frederick Meekins is an Internet columnist. He holds a BS from the University of Maryland in Political Science/History and a MA in Apologetics & Christian Philosophy from Trinity Theological Seminary. He is currently pursuing a Doctor of Practical Theology through the Master’s Graduate School Of Divinity in Evansville, Indiana. Frederick’s research interests include Worldview Application, Christian Apologetics, The Implications of Aberrant Theologies & Ideologies, Futurology, Eschatology, Science Fiction, Terrorism Studies, Environmentalism, Education Policy and America’s Judeo-Christian Foundations. Frederick is also an ordained Non-Denominational Minister and listed in “Who’s Who In America” and in “Who‘s Who Of Emerging Leaders“. Media inquiries can be directed to: His books “Yuletide Terror & Other Holiday Horrors” and “Provide For The Common Defense: Thoughts Concerning The Nation’s Enemies” are available at His blog, The Epistolizer, can be found at

Copyright Publius Forum 2001