Small changes would curb meth
Editor:CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- It was disheartening to read the comments of PEIA executive director Ted Cheatham concerning proposed legislative changes for pseudoephedrine. The characterization that pseudoephedrine would be on a list of prescription drugs that would require a physician office visit and limit the quantity to a 30-day prescription with no refills is inaccurate. Only medications with a schedule 2 classification require a written prescription and do not allow refills. There have been no recommendations to restrict pseudoephedrine to this degree. The recommendations of the governor's task force and the Kanawha Valley Drug Task Force, also would exempt "tamper resistant" pseudoephedrine products from "prescription only" status. Therefore allowing pseudoephedrine to remain available without a prescription, but in a form that is more difficult to utilize in the manufacturing of methamphetamine.
Pseudoephedrine is an oral decongestant indicated for the relief of nasal congestion. It reduces symptoms by 6 percent with one dose and to a lesser extent with subsequent doses. It does not cure or reduce the duration of any disease. It is also the only essential ingredient in the manufacturing of methamphetamine. Looking at costs from a purely medical standpoint is based on conjecture. The current demand for pseudoephedrine is falsely elevated due to the large amount of diverted product. It also does not take in to account costs of laboratory clean up, law enforcement and the costs of addiction. West Virginia is on pace to exceed 600 seized meth labs this year. Oregon only had 9 lab seizures after limiting pseudoephedrine to "prescription only" status. Small policy changes can help curb drug abuse in this state if we understand the facts.
Bradley Henry, M.D.
Keep religion out of government
I was dismayed and somewhat angered by the article about Satanists wanting to put a statue beside the Ten Commandments at the Oklahoma statehouse. How many times do we have to fight this battle? Religion is religion, and government is government and never the twain shall meet, so sayeth the constitution.
I am not a Satanist nor an atheist and surely not a "nut" as Rep. Bobby Cleveland (R-Ok.) would say.
The well-meaning true believers will say that the Ten Commandments belong at the statehouse because they are in the Bible. There are many things in the bible and all are justified by saying that they are God's words. I am sure that almost all religious books claim to be God's word or at least inspired by God.
More to the point is that based upon the bible, the God of the Ten Commandments is a supernatural being, not of this earth giving mankind instructions to live by. Satan, also in the Bible is a supernatural being, not of this earth giving mankind intelligence to live by. Another point most often overlooked in commandment discussions is the fact, according to the Bible, God ordered the Hebrews to disobey numbers 6, 8 and 10 of the commandments in the destruction of Jericho.
Enough is enough. Any person capable of reading history should know that when religion takes over government EVERYBODY'S freedoms and rights cease to exist. All you have to do is to look at the religious based governments of today and how their citizens live in fear of the "church."
William H. Fink