With the new year comes many new laws here in North Carolina, including legislation that should have the NAACP and Democracy NC crowd up in arms. Senate Bill 474 (which actually takes effect on March 1) would require a photo ID for the purchase of certain "controlled substances" – many of which are found in prescription drugs and painkillers.
That's right, Gov. Perdue signed into law legislation that will disenfranchise hundreds of thousands of elderly and minority citizens from their right to access medical care. And this is not the first law requiring photo ID for medicinal purposes. Included in the article about new laws taking effect in 2012 is this passage:
Starting Sunday, pharmacies will be required to enter customers into a national database when they want to buy cold medicine that contains pseudoephedrine, a key ingredient in making methamphetamine. The database will block the sale if the person has gone on a buying spree for the drug.
The state already requires stores to keep the medicine behind the counter, record buyer information and require a photo ID.
If you believe the laughable reports that up to one million North Carolina registered voters have no photo ID, then these laws would effectively block a substantial portion of our population from accessing needed medical care. (My colleague Susan Myrick previously exposed the flaws in the wildly reckless claims of the number of folks with no photo ID.)
With all their concern over legislation requiring voters show a photo ID, I am sure that groups like the NAACP and Democracy NC will be holding rallies to protest such laws disenfranchising citizens from access to medical care.