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State of the Debate
George Pyle
George Pyle has been a newspaper writer in Kansas, Utah, Upstate New York, and now Utah again, for more than 30 years - most of it as an editorial writer and columnist. Now on his second tour of duty on The Salt Lake Tribune Editorial Board, he has also done a stretch as a talk radio host, published a book on the ongoing flaws of U.S.agricultural policy and, in 1998, was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Writing. His most active bookmarks are Andrew Sullivan, Christopher Hitchens and Tina Brown. And he still thinks the Internet can be used for intelligent conversation and uplifting ideas.

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Editorials: Sex and politics ...

- A real conservative: Herbert right to veto HB363

Gov. Gary Herbert was faced with a choice between a workable status quo and a radical departure from long-established practice and law and, like the good conservative he wants us to think he is, he wisely chose not to fix something that wasn’t broken.

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Late Friday, only hours after the bill officially landed on his desk, Herbert vetoed HB363 . That’s the recent act of the Utah Legislature that would have eviscerated the state’s moderate, abstinence-first sex education curriculum and replaced it with a particularly prudish abstinence-only plan that nobody, other than a few members of the Legislature and some radical-right pressure groups, thought necessary. ...

... give Herbert some credit and consider that he did the right thing for the right reason. His official veto message correctly noted that Utah’s long-standing sex-ed curriculum is anything but radical. Most parents like it the way it is, but have the option of keeping their children out of those classes and handling the task themselves if they wish. ...

- Intrusive ultrasounds test Otter’s principles - Spokane (Wash.) Spokesman-Review Editorial

The Idaho Senate passed a bill on Monday that would force women to undergo an ultrasound examination before having an abortion. This intrusive, coercive bill is so extreme that some senators who voted for a constitutionally dubious anti-abortion bill last year rejected this one. ...

- More thoughtful conversation is needed in public debate - Casper Star-Tribune Editorial

... what happened with the birth control debate happens all too often in Congress and in a public forum. People’s integrity and personal character are assassinated. All sides are demonized, and debate degenerates into the lowest common denominators, which often turn out to be name-calling and innuendo.

But we need to have a rational, grown-up conversation about family planning. ...

- Memo to Congress: Get off the soapbox and renew domestic violence law - San Jose Mercury-News Editorial

... While it's tempting to frame this as a women's issue, it's really about human decency. ...

- Pending Arizona legislation is just plain shameful - Prescott [Ariz.] Daily Courier

... What a woman decides about her personal contraceptive methods based on her religious principles is her business. What a woman decides, no matter her convictions, is her business.

For a woman to have to disclose her reasons for using birth control to her employer in order to get insurance coverage smacks of trespassing into one's private life. ...



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