E-mail letters, June 18, 2010

Medical marijuana belongs
in licensed pharmacies

I don’t understand the hand-wringing over the marijuana dispensers. Now we have “medical marijuana.”  Big deal. We also have medical narcotics, amphetamines, barbiturates, tranquilizers and mood elevators, to name a few.  All of these others actually are legal because of FDA approval based on scientific studies of safety and efficacy. Marijuana has voter approval only.

Why can’t we freely “dispense” Dilaudid, Vicodin, Methadone and amphetamines on every street corner?  Because we’d be arrested, that’s why.

Marijuana, if it is to be dispensed at all, should be closely regulated, tracked, and dispensed only through licensed pharmacies, like any other controlled substance.  Stop making a mockery of our legitimate prescription drug system, and shut down the marijuana “dispensers.”
Donald Pacini, M.D.
Grand Junction

Hidden Gems proposal was
refined with users’ input

I appreciate The Daily Sentinel’s continued coverage of the important landscapes and policy questions in the Hidden Gems Wilderness Proposal.
In Eagle and Summit County, Hidden Gems representatives have met extensively with knowledgeable advocates for motorized travel, for bicycling, and for other public lands recreation for almost two years.
With the help of their expertise and advice, we adjusted the original Hidden Gems Wilderness Proposal so that the final proposal accommodates existing and future bicycling on over 20,000 acres of public land. We removed nearly 40,000 acres of land for snowmobiling.
We have also resolved issues with hunting guides, climbers and hang gliders, among others, so that their activities will be minimally affected by the Hidden Gems.
Wilderness protection is about much more than recreation. It is about protecting our precious, unique environment from the kind of degradation that occurs with all types of human activity, including mining, logging, road building and certain recreational activities.
Wilderness designation puts some limits on motors and wheels, but it is important to do that for the most wild and ecologically important areas of our backcountry.
The Hidden Gems contain high-quality habitat and shelter important water resources. They are truly our most valued landscapes. By protecting them with wilderness designation, we are building on our community’s longstanding legacy of environmental stewardship and ensuring that future generations will find the wild and colorful Colorado that sparks our curiosity and imagination today.
Steve Smith
Glenwood Springs



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