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Saturday, Aug. 27, 2016

Missouri's new law helps battle meth

Wednesday, June 25, 2003

"If you think education about the potential harm of meth will help, you're wrong."

Missouri has truly taken a major step toward resolving the mounting problem of methamphetamine in our state. Legislation signed into law Tuesday limits the sale of over-the-counter medications containing pseudoephedrine, a key ingredient in the making of meth. Now retail stores are limited in the amount of these products they can sell and the sales displays will be moved to make it harder to shoplift the drugs.

Granted, these steps alone will not stem the thugs who make and sell meth. But it may make their job more difficult and, if so, then it's a step in the right direction. But laws alone will not accomplish the job. It will take renewed enforcement. Our region of the state is clearly leading the charge in that direction.

Meth in many ways is unlike any other drug that is abused in our society. It is apparently fairly easy to manufacture and the ingredients are accessible. That makes it unique.

I wish someone who uses or manufactures meth would explain to me why they take the risk. Have you not seen the pictures of people with long histories of meth use? They are pathetic shells of their former selves and are most certainly killing themselves. If that is their goal, then there are faster and more effective methods.

I've told the story before about being in the checkout lane at a local store not too long ago and a young girl was buying an armful of products that were clearly and undeniably being used to make meth. Every person in that checkout lane knew exactly what was happening. The person at the register knew as well and said as much when the girl had left the store. Maybe this new limit will eliminate that tragic scene. If you think education about the potential harm of meth will help, you're wrong. If you don't know by now that meth will kill you, you're beyond hope. What we need are stronger penalties and additional barriers against the purchase of items used to make the poison.

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