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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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(Chris Detrick | Tribune file photo) Rep. Kraig Powell, R-Heber City, has opened a bill file on same-sex marriage.
Western Opinion Sampler: Fires, drugs, busted hotels, gays and guns ...

One Utah legislator recognizing the risks of climate change. And some under-the-influence editorial writers:

Fire battle plan: Bill recognizes threat of warming — Salt Lake Tribune Editorial

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One Utah legislator is finally trying to bring a state land-management policy in line with science and the pressing concerns of the 21st century. ...

... Rep. Kraig Powell, R-Heber City, is proposing legislation, HB77, that urges the Utah Division of Forestry, Fire and State Lands to adopt pre-suppression strategies that recognize how climate change is already affecting wildfire in the Beehive State. ...

Some depressing drug-war math — Orange County Register Editorial

... many of the drug-related problems the nation faces – gang wars and crime waves in particular – are the result of government prohibition and crackdown on drugs, not drugs themselves. ...

The DEA's marijuana mistake — Los Angeles Times Editorial

For a muscular agency that combats vicious drug criminals, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration acts like a terrified and obstinate toddler when it comes to basic science. For years, the DEA and the National Institute for Drug Abuse have made it all but impossible to develop a robust body of research on the medical uses of marijuana. ...

This motel is under arrest — Las Vegas Review-Journal Editorial

Civil forfeiture is the government power to take property suspected of involvement in a crime. In criminal forfeiture, property is seized after a conviction. In civil actions, however, police can seize property without so much as charging the owner with wrongdoing. This legal sleight-of-hand is common but not well-understood. ...

On booze and the Super Bowl — San Francisco Chronicle Editorial

... When the party's over, the city has to pick up the tab for fans who take their excitement out into the streets, and sometimes the tab is high indeed. ...

Montana behind the times on the rights of gays — Bozeman (Mont.) Daily Chronicle Editorial

Colorado gun buyers should pay for background checks — Denver Post Editorial

Charging a modest fee would allow background checks to be conducted in a timely fashion.

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