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Letters for Wednesday, December 25, 2019

Please remember to share with food banks

The hurricane season came and left leaving home unscathed. ‘Tis the season to share, too. Many food pantries would be grateful to receive your hurricane closet if you can spare it.

Mele Kalikimaka & Happy Holidays.

Jennifer Lovelett, Kapahi

Increase mental health services

The Garden Island’s editorial supporting Senator Schatz’s “federal interventions” on amphetamine “misuse” was well-meaning. After all, 10,000 amphetamine deaths in 2017 is a lot.

In contrast, 1,600 people die yearly from ibuprofen. There are 88,000 deaths from alcohol every year. 400,000 die from cigarettes each year. Senator Schatz is a big supporter of US military intervention.

I sure hope he doesn’t want military-like escalation of the ludicrously failed “war on drugs.” The criminal justice system has become America’s default for all its social problems. Amphetamines are used primarily by people who self treat their clinical depression. Same with opiates and alcohol.

The medicines we doctors use are not very effective, so people tend to self medicate. If the federal government feels they need to step in, hopefully, they will increase mental health services and decrease treating patients with drug and alcohol addictions as criminals.

Gordon LaBedz, MD, Kekaha
Source: The Garden Island

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