Letters to the Editor
MISSING IN ACTION
Legalizing recreational marijuana is on the horizon in Nevada, and the American Lung Association is MIA.
The most powerful and influential advocates of lung health in America make the statement “marijuana smoke contains 70 percent more carcinogens than tobacco smoke” on their national website, yet are seemingly sitting on the sidelines while marijuana is being legalized all over the country!
Whatever happened to “Don’t let your lungs go to pot” and “one marijuana cigarette is as harmful as four tobacco cigarettes?” They won’t say. After months of repeated emails and phone calls to various state and national chapters of the American Lung Association, I’ve been ignored, stonewalled, put off, and ignored some more.
What’s going on?
FEDS CAUSE INCREASED WILDFIRES
Last week the LVN ran a story about a bill to treat wildfires as natural disasters and seeking new funding would help fight them.
The fires often are disastrous but the way they have been allowed to increase in intensity and frequency is very unnatural. It is due to the mismanagement of public lands by the federal agencies that are crying for more funds.
The late Grant Gerber of Elko conducted extensive studies of wildfires and their effect on wildlife. The website was called “Smoked Bear” and you can find it on the Internet.
Gerber found that before 1950 an average of less than 10,000 acres burned in Nevada annually. By 2012 the toll had grown to 400,000 acres. The number of wildlife (vertebrates) lost to fires in that period had grown from 30,000 animals to 1.2 million in a year.
Gerber put the blame squarely on the federal agencies, whom he found had reduced the number of sheep grazing on federally controlled land by 90 percent and cattle by 50 percent since 1950.
The beat goes on, with the BLM introducing a new resource management plan this year that would further restrict grazing on public land; grazing that helps reduce the fuel of wildfires.
Bills are before the current legislative session that would transfer control of some of the public land from federal agencies to the state. The misguided perceptions of some environmental groups have slowed their progress.
More money will not fix the problem caused by the feds. Land such as that locked up for wilderness areas and areas of critical environmental concern should be freed up to be used again for ranching, mining, farming and recreating. That would see it better tended, with increases in wildlife and more money for the state’s coffers.
PRAYING FOR RAIN
Every time it rains, I say a prayer of thanksgiving. And I don’t just pray once; I pray continuously, thinking of how blessed this rain is.
Awhile back, I remember reading about how the community was having a day of fasting and prayer to ask for the moisture that we so desperately needed. My brother got back from a Louisiana mission, and he mentioned how it has rained more often here within two weeks than he saw in two weeks back east.
Is this not a grand blessing and an answer to our prayers?
I am fully aware that we don’t have as much water as we need right now, but maybe it’s like manna from heaven. Whatever it’s like, and however much rain we end up getting, I think that a day of community fasting and prayer in gratitude would be appropriate for the blessings that have already come. Let’s do it.
PARENTS TALK TO TEENS ABOUT DRINKING
Prom and graduation season means a lot of preparation time for high schoolers and their parents. Parents spend months helping her picking out the right prom dress or planning his graduation party, but it’s important to find time to talk with teens about making safe choices when it comes to underage drinking.
For more than 20 years, research has proven parents have the greatest influence on their teens’ decisions about drinking alcohol. In fact, parents’ influence has increased 24 percent since 1991, according to the GfK Roper Youth Report. Parents play an important role in helping teens make smart decisions when it comes to alcohol. Those who want to use their role as an opportunity to positively influence their teens can start by downloading a free copy of the Anheuser-Busch Family Talk About Drinking parent guide at Familytalkaboutdrinking.com. The guide and other available resources aim to help prevent underage drinking by encouraging parents to start and have ongoing conversations about alcohol with their children.
We at Capital Beverages would like to thank the parents, educators, law enforcement and many others who are making progress in reducing underage drinking. Let’s continue this positive trend by talking it out with teens this prom and graduation season.
General manager, Capital Beverages