In recent days a familiar number has popped up in the news. The number is 90. That is the number of opioid addiction deaths that occur daily in the current opioid drug abuse crisis.

Why is the number familiar? Because it is the same as the number of gun-related deaths that occur daily in the country. The opioid situation has been labeled a national crisis. Which it is and which our political establishment will undoubtedly do something about.

On the other hand, hand-gun deaths have been taken as an acceptable fact of life for decades. The president has appeared before the NRA to declare his firm support for guns. Most all our Utah Republican politicians are on the same page. The Second Amendment has been construed as allowing the vast gun industry to develop and deploy every conceivable kind of weapon.

I suppose, with appropriate legislative enactments, in the ensuing months and years the opioid death numbers will go down. The number of gun-related deaths will continue to rise. The number 90 will no longer be coincidentally significant.

Philip Beck, Stansbury Park