Letters to the Editor, Jan. 22

Marco Eagle

Pending marijuana epidemic

Just because marijuana is a flower that comes from a plant, we shouldn’t be fooled; it’s no bed of rose petals.

Whether marijuana was consumed in the ‘60s or is being consumed today, its organic nature to be several things — a stimulant, a depressant or a hallucinogen based on the amount consumed — hasn’t changed. What has changed, however, is marijuana’s potency, with today’s strains being purposely chemically cultivated to be exponentially more potent than its predecessors. This is all being done with one express intention and that is to bilk Americans out of our cash, earned or otherwise attained, and turn us into a new revenue stream and a nation of addicts.

Editorial cartoon

Isn’t one drug epidemic at a time enough? Could our minds be so clouded by the allure of profits and tax revenues that we can’t see what we ultimately stand to lose?

Every day, the number of new marijuana users, mainly comprised of adolescents and young adults, increases as a result of our reckless communications and our relentless marijuana marketing campaigns. As a clinician in the field of substance abuse and mental health treatment, I realize I can’t stop what’s coming, but I can sound the alarm, nonetheless.

With the way things are currently headed, Anne Armstrong, the former Rhode Islandgubernatorial candidate representing the Compassion Party, may actually get her wish: “I’m gonna sit and use cannabis as I govern from my office and I’m gonna have cannabis in the rotunda of the statehouse and it is gonna be a people’s cannabis garden.” I ask you, is this really the kind of America we want?

Lance McCormack, Marco Island

Stop bickering; build the wall

The 16 minutes that revealed the real truth about the border wall debate.

I’m referring to the recent prime-time network telecast of President Donald Trump (eight minutes) and Sen. Chuck Schumer and Rep. Nancy Pelosi (eight minutes) that was billed as a debate on the merits — for and against — of constructing a border wall.

I will modestly suggest that, instead, it was a partisan charade that had very little to do with the socalled “wall” and everything to do with the goal of today’s extreme partisan politics: winning at any cost where my win is defined as your loss. In this context, there is no such thing as a “win-win” scenario because that involves compromise and in today’s toxic political climate that’s tantamount to apostasy.

Why do I say it was not about constructing the wall? Because all three acknowledge the importance of border security and over the last decade each has been an ardent advocate of constructing a wall at much higher levels of spending than currently proposed. In fact, if you look at the current recommended spending for constructing the wall, it is less than 1 percent of the federal government’s $4.4 trillion budget for this fiscal year. Why, it’s not even a rounding error!

So in the final analysis, we’r e shutting down the government and creating havoc and uncertainty for a lot of people because these three refuse to sit down and have an adult conversation about an important issue.

So I, humble citizen Mason, have simple suggestions for Trump, Schumer and Pelosi:

  • Can the partisanship.
  • Quit the petty schoolyard bickering and act like adults.
  • Compromise to find a “win/win” solution.
  • Do it in a hurry.

Bruce Mason, Marco Island

Republicans supporting corruption

Whether you are you Republican, Democrat or independent, it doesn't matter. If you believe in honesty, humility, loyalty, empathy, civility and good manners you cannot support "The Donald." If you believe in these traits and still support President Donald Trump, there is a word for it: hypocrisy. He lacks in all of these important characteristics of humanity.

So many primary, middle and high schools promote the slogan that "character counts," meaning positive traits. Trump has told 7,500 proven lies in the past two years. Whew!

I was once a proud independent voter. Intelligent people, or more accurately honest good people, just cannot support such terrible traits that are apart of the DNA of egocentric Trump. It is a pity that Republican senators and representatives support corruption rather than their country.

Tom Beck, Naples