2016-04-25

Trump Supporting Governor Vetoes Life-Saving Medication Without a Prescription

Maine governor Paul LePage vetoed a bill that would have made Naloxone available without a prescription.

When Paul LePage vetoed this bill, he explained, “naloxone does not truly save lives; it merely extends them until the next overdose.”

Say what?

Look, I understand that some conservatives support some aspects of the Drug War, but I don’t see this making sense from any perspective.

God forbid, but if your son or daughter was a heroin addict, you might want to be able to buy some Naloxone just in case you needed it to save your child’s life. You would hope that you would be allowing that person to reconsider their path and kick their drug habit. According to LePage, there is no hope for addicts. Just regard them as virtually already dead, parents.

The New York Daily News reports,

Brash Maine Gov. Paul LePage vetoed a bill that would make a life-saving overdose prevention medication more available — because it will only prolong life until an addict’s next overdose, he said.

LePage, a Republican, blocked the bill on Wednesday, which proposed to make the drug Naloxone — designed to quickly counteract a potentially fatal opiate overdose — available over the counter without a prescription to someone at risk, or their family members.

“Naloxone does not truly save lives; it merely extends them until the next overdose,” the controversial governor wrote in his rejection of the bill.

It is not as if this was primarily a new welfare benefit. This isn’t the same as the odious idea of government-supplied clean needles. Allowing the people the freedom to have a chance to save a loved one’s life in no way condones the behavior that leads to the heroin overdose.

A more conservative position would be to get rid of the entire prescription system and tell people to make their own medical decisions. Maybe that wouldn’t be a wise idea but my point is that the prescription system itself is far more questionable on conservative grounds than restricting life-saving medicine.

Do we want to make all opiate crimes into capital crimes? If not, then why treat them as if they are already dead?

According to Drugpolicy.org over 30 states allow Naloxone to be sold without a prescription. I cannot understand why a Republican governor would veto legislation allowing state residents freedom in this area.

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Joe Scudder

Joe Scudder is the "nom de plume" (or "nom de guerre") of a fifty-ish-year-old writer and stroke survivor. He lives in St Louis with his wife and still-at-home children. He has been a freelance writer and occasional political activist since the early nineties. He describes his politics as Tolkienesque.

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