WATE out of Knoxville reports that, because we're on track to be the number one state for meth labs, law enforcement officials are once again pushing to make pseudoephedrine available only by prescription.
"Our area here in Roane County, we've had some issues with meth manufacturing, and I was looking for anything that would make a difference," explained Harriman Police Chief Randy Hiedle.
Chief Hiedle believes the new ordinance will cut back on some of the meth production in their area.
"The problem with people making meth, by the time law enforcement is notified, the damage is already done; they've already made it. There's only one ingredient to make meth. To keep you from making meth, if you take it away, you can't make meth. And that's pseudoephedrine," he said.
This is patently untrue. As the name pseudo-ephedrine suggests, there's the real ephedrine out there that you can make meth from, too. So, let's not pretend like making pseudoephedrine prescription only, when you can buy ephedrine off the internet for five bucks a bottle, is going to do much but put a slight dent in meth production until the ephedrine-based recipes gain popularity.
We'll be back here again in a few years with law enforcement begging state legislators to make ephedrine prescription only. And they'll be telling us that it's the only ingredient you need to make meth.
And then after that, they'll be teaching us all about the dangers of phenylacetone, which will then be the cornerstone ingredient for meth.
This will probably stretch out for decades — law enforcement's efforts to make everything associated with meth sound like the thing we need to get out of reach of meth makers by making it prescription-only and this time, whichever time, when we finally make that ingredient prescription-only, our meth scourge will be solved.
I would just like for someone to ask this one question of law enforcement right now. If making a drug available only by prescription makes it too difficult for people to abuse, then how do you explain oxycodone?