This Could Only Happen In North Carolina

A while back, the story about inhaleable alcohol broke over the internet (I can't find the specific link, but this was announced several years ago in 2004). Fast forward to today, and there's an article floating around stating the machines have been banned in my home state of North Carolina (in addition to 21 other states). My home state is at the very center of the bible belt, and is also a haven for commercial televangelism so it's not a huge surprise until you factor in the following:

  • The company that distributes the Alcohol without Liquid machines is headquartered in North Carolina
  • The reasoning behind the ban has nothing to do with the actual imbibing process, it's the fact that hangovers are averted and thus the user isn't "punished" for committing what most Christians consider to be a sin: Over consumption of alcohol.

From the article:

Indeed, the main knock against AWOL in the U.S. is the absence of a hazard (hangover) usually associated with alcohol consumption, an apparent advantage that, to the horror of moralists like the Rev. Creech, divorces sin from punishment.

According to the Christian Action League, the North Carolina bill, which was unanimously approved by the state Senate in April and unanimously approved by the state House yesterday, "makes it unlawful to inhale fumes for the purpose of intoxication, or to manufacture, sell, give, deliver, possess or use an alcohol vaporizing device. It also makes it illegal to possess or sell ethyl alcohol for the purpose of inhaling." So if you pick up a bottle of vodka in North Carolina and announce, "I think I'd like to inhale some of this," you have transformed an otherwise legal beverage into contraband.

What happened to separation of church and state? Down here in the South, that phrase is largely an oxymoron...the church wields huge influential power over local government and politics. The reasoning behind this ban is ridiculous.

Sidenote: This story has zero impact on me; I don't drink (or in this case, inhale) alcohol. I'm also not a bible thumping southerner.