Letters: Students face bigger threats than school shootings
March 22, 2018
Summit County should also adopt bag ban
Have you ever been to the Summit County landfill near Rockport Reservoir? Our class went to the landfill, and we watched all of the plastic bags flying around, sticking to sagebrush and trees. We decided that this was not good for us or the economy of Summit County, and wanted to do something about this problem.
We learned that plastic bags pose a threat to animals, plants, and the entire environment. Plastic bags are made from oil and fossil-fuels, which are non-renewable resources. These are incredibly important resources used for things such as diesel and gasoline, which power most of our vehicles. They are also used for electricity, something used daily. Finally, they are used to make other goods out of plastic, which are arguably more important than plastic bags.
Our class wants to extend the current Park City plastic bag ban into Summit County. To accomplish this goal, we sent representatives to a Summit County Council meeting to persuade them to extend the ban. At the meeting, we gave examples of how plastic bags affect the environment in a negative way, and how bans have had success in other places. We even went to the state Capitol and talked to our local representative, Logan Wilde, about the bill, SB0218, which would have prevented all municipalities in Utah from creating any container bans or fees. This bill did not pass, allowing Summit County to choose what to do about this issue.
In conclusion, while single-use bags are easy and accessible, they are harmful to the environment. We can save the environment if we have a plastic bag ban. Residents of Summit County, we hope you understand the reasons behind having a plastic bag ban and will at least consider the idea.
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Calvin Crossland and Lillie Walden
Seventh grade, Park City Day School
Spring is great time to eat plant-based meals
With three crippling Nor'easters battering our East Coast in quick succession, we all looked forward to March 20th, first day of spring, balmy weather, and flowers in bloom.
It's also a superb occasion to replace animal foods on our menu with healthy, delicious, eco-friendly vegetables, legumes, grains, and fruits.
The shift toward healthy eating is everywhere. Fast-food chains like Chipotle, Quiznos, Starbucks, Subway, Taco Bell, and Wendy's all offer plant-based options. Major publications and popular websites tout vegan recipes.
Google CEO Eric Schmidt views replacement of meat by plant protein as the world's #1 technical trend. The financial investment community is betting on innovative start-ups, like Beyond Meat, or Impossible Foods. Even Tyson Foods new CEO sees plant protein as meat industry's future.
Global Meat News reports that nearly half of consumers are reducing meat intake. Indeed, per capita red meat consumption has dropped by a whopping 25% in the past 40 years.
Every one of us can celebrate spring by checking out the rich collection of plant-based dinners and desserts in our supermarket's frozen food, dairy, and produce sections. An internet search on vegan foods brings rich rewards.
Students face bigger threats than school shootings
So high schoolers in Park City are demonstrating for gun control. Underlying the sophomoric rhetoric is the fear of each student that he or she might be next. That's just not realistic and not a valid reason to take an extreme — and ultimately futile — position.
Analyze the odds. American teens die in far greater numbers from drugs, alcohol, and auto accidents involving those substances as well as cell phones and texting. They die from suicide, non-gun violence, and disease. All are far more likely than a Parkland-style shooting.
It is right and proper to grieve for the Parkland victims, but wrong for students at hundreds of schools to believe that they will be next unless some form of gun control protects them. Students: Demonstrate against opioids, underage drinking, bullying, or distracted driving. Those are the risks you really face.