Perspectives: Stop China From Spreading Fentanyl Into The U.S.
Editorial pages focus on the opioid epidemic and other drug-related issues.
We Want To Stop The Spread Of Fentanyl
Synthetic forms of heroin have flooded Midwestern communities and taken lives at unprecedented and tragic rates. We now have an opportunity to make significant progress to help combat the influx of fentanyl — the deadliest killer in this crisis. This week, the House of Representatives passed the STOP Act, a bipartisan bill we authored that will help keep more synthetic drugs like fentanyl from being shipped into the U.S., and a Senate committee approved the bill, moving it to the Senate floor where we hope it will soon have a vote. We need the STOP Act because fentanyl has invaded our communities and is increasingly robbing people of their God-given potential and taking lives. (Sen. Rob Portman and Rep. Mike Bishop, 6/16)
Dallas Morning News:
The Opioid Crisis Is Knocking At Texas' Door And It Cannot Be Ignored
As the opioid crisis spills across this country, one aspect that we believe gets far too little attention is this: When millions of Americans are addicted to drugs and tens of thousands are overdosing and dying each year, this isn't simply a drug problem. It's a social breakdown. Excuse us if this comes across as a little preachy, but sometimes the role of a newspaper's editorial board is to call out important issues that are too easy for most people to gloss over. (6/16)
Los Angeles Times:
Keep Marijuana Ads A Football Field (Or Two) Away From Your Kids
The legalization of recreational marijuana use in California has set off an advertising boom on billboards across the state. The gigantic ads try to persuade us — and our offspring — that we can easily get “chill vibes,” say “goodbye stress” or “get rid of pesky hangovers.” The proposed cure-all, of course, is marijuana. ...The ordinance focuses on outdoor advertising, and it mirrors established tobacco-advertising guidelines. It will prohibit a billboard promoting marijuana within 700 feet — more than twice the length of a football field — of obvious places children might be. This includes daycare and youth centers, schools, public parks, libraries and playgrounds. It will also restrict smaller outdoor signage, limiting a cannabis retail business to one on-site sign — no portable signs or sandwich boards. Solid data about the effects of marijuana advertising back up these restrictions. A seven-year research project my colleagues and I recently completed for the nonprofit Rand Corp., confirmed what common sense suggests: The more exposure young people have to marijuana advertising, the more likely they are to use the drug and to have positive views about it. (Elizabeth J. D'Amico, 6/18)
Drug Abuse Taking Toll On Children
Drug abuse by Kansas parents – particularly meth – continues to take an extreme toll on both our youth and the state agencies which oversee their care and well-being. The Department for Children and Families is overrun with reports of abuse, neglect and at-risk children to the extent that it cannot hire enough qualified workers to properly investigate, and new DCF Secretary Gina Meier-Hummel has floated filling these positions with lesser-qualified individuals out of pure necessity. In 2016, Child Protective Services received 34,537 reports of abuse or neglect and was able to substantiate only 7.2 percent of these reports. Nationally, 16.5 percent of reports were substantiated that same year. It is likely that this discrepancy can be attributed to case overload and botched investigations – not frivolous reports. (Blake Shuart, 6/18)