Preventing drug abuse - Brownsville Herald: Letters To The Editor

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Preventing drug abuse

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Posted: Sunday, May 19, 2019 11:04 pm


National Prevention Week was May 12-18. According to Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, “National Prevention Week is an annual health observance dedicated to increasing public awareness of, and action around, mental and/or substance use disorders.” The topics discussed during the week include prescription drug misuse, underage drinking, illicit drug use, youth marijuana use, youth tobacco use and suicide.

According to the 2018 Texas School Survey in Region 11, 48.2% of 7th- to 12th-grade students in South Texas have tried alcohol, beer being the most tried alcohol followed by hard liquor. In addition, 22.9% of the students reporting tried an illicit drug with marijuana being the leading illicit drug of choice at 21.6% of students ever trying it. Furthermore, 15.9% of students reported misusing a prescription medication, and codeine cough syrup is rated the most misused prescription medication.

In the same survey, students were asked about ease of access to substances, and 23.2% of students reported it was “very easy” to access alcohol and 18.7% for marijuana.

Youth and young adult focus groups conducted by the Prevention Resource Center in Region 11 inform that youth appreciate when parents become involved and talk about the risks and consequences related to substance use, thus making National Prevention Week a perfect opportunity to talk to our youth about substances.

The Prevention Resource Center in Region 11 encourages community members to participate in prevention efforts in the community. For more information related to alcohol, marijuana, and other drugs and tips on how to have conversations about substance use visit www. or contact

Martha Gutierrez


Settlement hypocrisy


Under the U.S. Constitution, Article VI’s supremacy clause, the Constitution itself, federal laws and treaties are the supreme law of the land. Executive orders are only valid if they are done with the jurisdictional authority of Article II’s presidential power.

Recently President Donald Trump’s administration announced that it is debating whether it should institute a program under an executive order to send thousands of recent Central American refugees to sanctuary states, counties and cities.

California, Illinois, Iowa and Washington are sanctuary states. Some sanctuary counties are in Colorado, Connecticut, New York and North Carolina. Chicago, Los Angeles, New York City and San Francisco are sanctuary cities.

The California governor, mayor of New York City, several 2020 Democratic presidential candidates and some Democratic members of Congress voiced their anger and hostility, alleging President Trump’s proposed order is illegal and racist. Some of them also states that it would increase crime and create other problems in these locations.

President Trump recently stated that these same Democratic officials have been saying that these refugees are welcome with open arms in these locations. He also stated he wanted to show these officials as hypocrites by showing their true intentions of not really wanting these refugees in these locations.

During 2016, some of these Democratic officials did not complain when then-President Barack Obama resettled thousands of Syrian refugees all over the U.S., resulting in protests from many governors of those states

affected. These Democratic officials did not consider President Obama’s action illegal and racist.

Are these Democratic officials hypocrites? You decide based on the facts.

Silvestre Moreno


Assange is a hero


Julian Assange has sacrificed nine years of his life for attempting to reveal to you and to me (through WikiLeaks) secrets formerly known only to a select few tied to the military industrial complex and the deep state. Secrets revealed to us by WikiLeaks include, among many others just as immoral, concrete evidence of wanton massacres of civilians in Iraq and Afghanistan by U.S. forces, the routine use of torture by our military in the Middle East and in Guantánamo, as well as diplomatic cables demonstrating the complicity of Washington in the crimes of despotic regimes in Latin America.

Rather than sending thugs to drag the ailing Assange from the Ecuadorian embassy to face trial and further loss of freedom for exposing truthful information that we as responsible citizens need to know, shouldn’t we be holding George Bush, Colin Powell, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton accountable for lying and concealing the facts?

Without whistleblowers like Assange, Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden to expose us to the reality of our nation’s wars, there is no hope that the American public will wake up and demand an end to the madness. The income gap will continue to grow as war taxes continue to line the pockets of the 1%. Innocent civilians in the ever-expanding theater of war will be slaughtered in our name. The world’s ecosystems will be further degraded — and our children will continue to fight and die needlessly in the process.

Long live Julian Assange. He has tried to remove the blinders from our eyes.

Terry Church


Cruelty, prayers


Do we fully appreciate the intentional cruelty of “zero tolerance,” separating children from parents seeking legal asylum at our southern border? The government claims to have lost track of more than a thousand children and deny responsibility for reuniting them or bearing the costs!

Have you likewise experienced flashbacks of humanity’s race to the bottom of the Barrel of Evil? Racist policies, designed by Trump’s white supremacist wretchedness, Stephen Miller and advanced by former Attorney General Jeff Sessions, is America’s shame.

Nazi Germany targeted Jews, Slavs, Gypsies, nonwhites and those with special needs deemed unworthy of sharing the planet’s oxygen with the Aryans. Is advancing such misbegotten notions what Americans want our country to be known for?

The nation passed the 1-year anniversary of Florida’s Douglas High School shooting recently with appeals for commonsense firearm regulations. What a difference two generations makes given the carnage!

My high school principal would command: “Start cheering or you’ll return to your home rooms and classes will begin immediately!” at Friday assemblies before Saturday football games. Today’s tormented students could only hope to hear his exhortations in lieu of memories seared in blood, having experienced the carnage of “that particular day” stemming from an uber-rigid belief valuing the 2nd Amendment more than life itself.

If unwilling to stand with them, please keep any “thoughts and prayers” to yourself! It’s clear your heart’s not in it.

Rev. Barry Abraham Zavah

Alpine, Texas

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