State of the Debate

Pot good. Booze bad. Speed kills. Sometimes ...

First Published      Last Updated Jul 07 2014 12:49 pm

Here's what you learn from reading more than one news source.

Sunday's Salt Lake Tribune editorial holds out hope that, with enough real science, we might find ways that some forms of marijuana can improve, even save, lives.

Sunday's Deseret News editorial raises the alarm that alcohol abuse is a really, really bad thing.

On Vox, Ezra Klein (above) explains how there is a possibility that the best public health move we could make would be to move people away from alcohol and toward marijuana. And not just the medical kind.

And he figured that out without reading either the Trib or the DNews.

Primary Children's takes welcome step toward understanding marijuana — Salt Lake Tribune Editorial

"Seldom does an advanced society pride itself on its ignorance. But, for nearly half a century, the laws of the United States have effectively prevented any honest and useful study of the benefits and harms of various forms of the marijuana plant.

"Slowly, that attitude is changing. And Utah's Primary Children's Hospital is to be one of those to take a small but important step toward an understanding that can save lives. ..."

Public health officials worldwide are awake to the problems of alcohol abuse — Deseret News Editorial

" ... Fortunately, the state Legislature takes this problem seriously. Its balanced approach permits social drinkers to obtain a beverage, but discourages overconsumption, drunk driving and youth drinking. ..."

Be smart at 80 mph — Casper Star-Tribune Editorial board

" ... The higher speed limits haven't equaled more crashes or speeding infractions, and they actually make it more likely that traffic travels at the same speed — a crash-reduction measure. That might seem counterintuitive, but the evidence bears it out.

"So let's be smart about the boosted speed limit and keep in mind a few things: ..."

Some other health-related opinions:

Health care decisions should be left up to individuals — Robert Bennett | For The Deseret News

" ... It's a highly emotional issue, but there's an easy way out.

"Empower the individual. Take both the government and the employer out of the decision-making process. Change the tax law so that Hobby Lobby and every other employer can give its health care expenditures directly to its employees, tax free, empowering them to control their own money and pick their own plans. Those who want contraceptive coverage could buy it and those who don't wouldn't have to.

"This is the key concept of the bill I wrote with Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore), a bipartisan effort that had 19 co-sponsors – 10 Republicans and 9 Democrats. The Obama administration chose to ignore us and instead push the government ever more deeply into the existing (but collapsing) system of employer controlled health care. ..."

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