Thursday, May 4, 2017

Voting NO on PDMP was the Right thing to do!

Patrick Martin is the Editor of the Arnold-Imperial Leader Newspaper and is upset that the Jefferson County Council did not pass a Prescription Drug Monitoring Database, (PDMP). He wrote a scathing editorial in the May 4, 2017 edition titled, “Voting No on drug monitoring not just dumb—it’s dereliction of duty” chastising the four members of the Jefferson County Council who voted against the measure causing its defeat. The four members are District 1 Councilman Don Bickowski, District 2 Renee Reuter, District 3 Bob Boyer and District 4 Charles Groeteke. Their vote was not a dereliction of duty as he claims, but was the responsible thing to do. They should be commended for abiding by the oath they took to uphold the Constitution when they voted down the PDMP legislation.
Martin wrote, “Sixty-nine people died in Jefferson County in 2016 from drug overdoses. To four members of the Jefferson County Council who voted against joining the PDMP, those deaths and the hundreds or thousands of people affected by them apparently are secondary to goose-stepping (is that a NAZI reference) to the Tea Party March.” Martin is calling for a recall petition against these four council members.
It is obvious; Pat Martin is a typical leftist DemonRAT, who does not believe in the Constitution. Apparently, Martin is unaware that these elected representatives of Jefferson County, including Ken Waller, before taking office, "shall take and subscribe to an oath or affirmation" (79.260) before a court of record or the city clerk. The written oath is filed with the city clerk. Failure to take the oath vacates the office. “I, . . . ., do solemnly swear that I will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Missouri”…
Bickowski, Reuter, Boyer and Groeteke’s vote against PDMP shows is they take seriously that oath to uphold the Constitution. Evidently Executive Ken Waller and those supporting the PDMP do not. Since the Fourth Amendment states, “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” So, the database is a violation of the people’s right to privacy. Whatever happened to doctor-patient confidentiality?
Waller, who supports the database, claimed, “It’s sad that people just don’t do the right thing (vote for a PDMP). The bottom line is that it didn’t pass and more people are going to die and they are not going to do anything about it.” News Flash; people will die regardless of a PDMP. And No! The sad day is when an elected official wants to violate people’s rights and their oath of office.
The supporters of the bill apparently have forgotten or are unaware about the NSA spying on American citizens, the IRS intimidation of Constitutional Tea Party groups and Governor Jay Nixon using the DOR to target gun owners. This is another database that will be used to control the people. If there IS a database, the Government can get access to it and can use the information against the people. Case in point, on 5/30/14, 203 Republicans and 117 Democrats, including Jefferson County’s US Representatives Blaine Luetkemeyer and Ann Wagner voted on an amendment H Amd 704 to HR 4660, a Federal bill wherein, if you take certain prescription drugs you would be banned from owning a gun. So, how would the government know without having access to the database? News Flash: any information in a computer can be hacked or retrieved, because that is the nature of the computer. Information is put in, so it can be taken out. (GIGO) And now some leaders in some counties are taking it upon themselves to set up their own databases in their counties.
According to the April 20, 2017Arnold Imperial Leader article, Sue Curfman CEO and President of Comtrea, a drug rehab center, supports the PDMP stating, “How long are we going to wait for more people to die of drug overdoses and how many more people are going to become users before we do something?” Excuse me, but how is a PDMP going to get people to go to a rehab center for treatment? Answer, it doesn’t. Councilman Bikowski has Constitutional privacy rights issues with a PDMP to which she replied, “I appreciate your privacy concerns, but when you ask which doctors have received education, it may be a valid point, but it’s just wasting time.” In other words, a person’s Constitutional right to privacy is of no concern to her. She goes on stating, “Let us do what we do best. We do this (deal with drug abuse) every day. All we need from you is an ordinance that allows the county to join St. Louis County’s PDMP.” Again, how is a database going to get people to come to a rehab center for treatment? She then pulls out the NAZI card implying that if the council does not approve a PDMP they are NAZI’s, when she said, “Inaction on the matter (PDMP) is how the United States reacted to the Holocaust in Hitler’s Germany in World War II.” Apparently, she failed or did not have Civics class when it comes to the US Constitution and the people’s unalienable rights. Could it be she supports a PDMP in order to get grant money for her center from the federal government?
Supporters claim there is an opioid and heroin epidemic in this country. They claim “Opioids” are a gateway to heroin and this law in Missouri will stop the heroin epidemic. Let’s see, this law has been enacted creating databases in the other 49 states to stop the opioid and heroin “epidemic”. So, with every other state having such a law and database why is there still an epidemic in this country? This law is/was to be a panacea to correct the problem. And another thing, what doctor is prescribing heroin for treatment and what pharmacy is filling that script? Answer, NONE. FYI most if not all of the heroin comes from Mexico.
By having a PDMP supporters say it will save lives. Waller stated, “If we can save one life, wouldn’t that be worth it?” How so? Taking it a step further, Pat Martin said he will keep a running tally on drug overdose deaths in Jefferson County to lay at the feet the four members of the Jefferson County Council for their vote against a PDMP. Contrary to Martin’s contention a PDMP does not save lives. There are already TREATMENT Centers for people to go for treatment without a PDMP. Furthermore, there are ALREADY laws on the books regarding the abuse of these drugs by those using as well as those who are dealing in the drugs.
According to Real Time Death Statistics database, which gets its information from the CDC, the current death toll was 4701 prescription drug overdose deaths and 7837 related to all drug abuse from January 1, 2017 to April 25, 2017. Unfortunately, this is in line with the 33,000 deaths attributed to heroin and opioid overdose deaths in 2015. Nonetheless, a PDMP would do nothing to prevent those deaths. Moreover, in the same time frame, January 1, 2017 to April 25, 2017, deaths from hospital associated infections were 31027 and medical errors were 78808. Buzz Westfall and Jack Snow were two prominent men from St. Louis who died from hospital associated infections. So, using the same logic of “if we can save one life, by setting up a PDMP, wouldn’t that be worth it,” should we be closing down all the hospitals? Of course not.
We do not need any more laws such as the ones they are talking about setting up databases to combat the supposed "opioid epidemic." Big Brother is already TOO BIG. Again, there is no need for more intrusion into people’s lives by government by creating this database with this type of legislation. There is also a bill in the Missouri legislature The Narcotics Control Act (NCA) that needs to be shown the light of day and defeated, along with any other counties that want to set up their own databases. Missouri is the only state that has it right. Let's keep it that way. And Jefferson County has four members, District 1 Councilman Don Bickowski, District 2 Renee Reuter, District 3 Bob Boyer and District 4 Charles Groeteke, who follow the Constitution they swore to uphold and should be commended for it. Unlike, Jefferson County Executive Ken Waller who wants to disregard his oath to uphold the Constitution with his position on PDMP and should resign.
Greg Zotta
Imperial, MO