I just successfully purchased a box of cold medicine containing pseudoephedrine, after being finger-printed and DNA-sampled. Well, not quite. But close.
I guess I hadn’t bought anything containing pseudoephedrine in a long time. (I’m one of those people who prefers to groan about my symptoms to anyone within earshot, rather than actually taking something that would alleviate them.) But having worked as a consultant for a major drug chain for several years, I was tangentially involved in the whole “move the pseudoephedrine behind the counter because teenagers are using it to make meth” initiative. But I guess I assumed that you just had to show your driver’s license to prove to the teenager behind the counter that you were 18 (as if anyone REALLY has to look at my driver’s license to be convinced that I’m 18, but whatever) and then you paid your money and left.
But no, I not only had to show my driver’s license, but the pharmacy assistant had to scan the back of it, then key in a bunch of info from the front of my driver’s license. Then I had to sign a statement that I didn’t really read, but was about some fine or something, which assume was the penalty for re-selling the pseudoephedrine-containing product to a teenager. Which I’m not going to do, whether or not I sign the statement.
Really? Aren’t we going a little bit overboard? I can buy into having it behind the counter and making me show my driver’s license to prove that I’m 18. But scanning my license? Making me sign a statement, as if I don’t know that if I have to be 18 to buy the product I shouldn’t turn around and re-sell it to someone else?
But the bigger question is….is all this bureaucratic nonsense making any difference? Or is it just a huge pain in the ass to retailers and the average consumer. The last I checked, people who wanted to make meth (which just to be clear, doesn’t include me; Emma has a bad cold) were still figuring out how to get the raw materials.
Can’t we focus on more important things, like going around making Hispanic-looking people prove that they belong here? Oh wait, never mind.