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Medical marijuana not good for Iowa

Governor Reynolds should be proud of vetoing HF 732, a bill that was passed after and only after many Representatives were misled. I have no doubt that people will whine and complain that they currently aren’t getting high enough off what is being sold from medical CBD shops around the state. Vetoing this bill will not make Governor Reynolds more popular but it does make her right. She should rest peacefully tonight, knowing that she put public health ahead of what is popular.

Our governor will be criticized for going against what many Iowans are requesting: a “right” to get stoned. Many will insist that getting stoned helps their pain, Crohn’s Disease, cancer, or whatever other medical condition that our legislature can come up with. Many people will demand that if so many Iowans are asking for something, then the governor should give it to them. I’m left asking: If the majority of Iowans started demanding that we should not have to get vaccines, wear seatbelts, or pay taxes, then would we expect the governor to give in to those demands as well?

Let’s be clear: Medical marijuana may be relieving people’s symptoms, but that is merely a side effect of what this is really about. This is about an industry profiting off people’s misconceptions. This is not about someone’s “right” to self-medicate. And if it was, then let’s explore where THAT line of reasoning will stop, if ever. Here’s an example: since turning 30, I have gained five pounds that I cannot seem to get rid of. I have no doubt in my mind that if I could use meth, then I would be able to lose those five pounds in no time. This is a free country, right? Why not set up shops where I can purchase my meth? And why not let the legislature decide how much meth I should be able to use, what conditions I can use it for, and whether it will actually help me?

See how ridiculous it sounds? But because our society has fed into the myth spread by lobbyists that marijuana is the cure-all for everything under the sun, then we are willing to go along with the false claims. Thank you, Governor Reynolds, for not giving in!

Maggie Ballard, Council Bluffs


People watching is fascinating

I have always been curious while people watching in grocery stores, restaurants, traffic and other public places.

It is interesting and very telling. Their personalities stand out as much as if they were wearing elaborate message patches on their sleeves.

The same is true when I read the various contributions to opinion columns in the newspapers. The difference is they are no longer just anonymous people. Their names are attached to their admissions. I am finding this fascinating and somewhat disturbing.

Many are prolific and always relay messages presented everyday by the news sources they watch or listen to. The problem is their lack of trying to verify the caustic material they write about. They are subliminally consuming negative information filled with various catch words or phrases.

I believe, in many cases, their compulsion to write a public opinion piece is in seeking relief from the overload of such a barrage of upsetting news stories. It is their way of getting rid of something annoying like a song stuck in their head.

Ken Lane, Council Bluffs

America needs Planned Parenthood

As a fundamentalist pastor, I demonized Planned Parenthood rooting my bias in a rigid literal interpretation of scripture and ignored the social, economic and historical context of a woman’s life. I ignored reality and created the illusion that if we could just get rid of Planned Parenthood, American would be a better, holier and blessed place. I began to think what America would look like without Planned Parenthood.

The first thing I thought was “well, there would be 1 million less abortions a year.” Is that true? In the 2017-2018-year, PP provided 332,757 abortions of the 897,000 abortions that were performed. Meaning there are other providers, so getting rid of PP would not end abortion. The truth is without Planned Parenthood, there would be more abortions. Planned Parenthood has been instrumental in reducing teenage pregnancy. In a 2015 report it was revealed that PP because of its birth control program averted 430,000 unintended pregnancies of which 140,000 would have resulted in abortion.

Without Planned Parenthood, 2.4 million people would not receive care. The majority of those are from low income families (79%). Without PP: 70,000 women would have suffered from cancer because the cancer would not have been detected and 240,000 would not have known they had a STI. Without PP, there would be 740,000 less HIV tests and 570,000 women would not get breast checks or PAP tests.

Yes, America would be different without Planned Parenthood. Its health care would suffer, and women would suffer the most.

Edward Kelly Jr., Red Oak

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