Editorials from around Ohio
Excerpts of recent editorials of statewide and national interest from Ohio newspapers:
The Marietta Times, Nov. 12
Ohio will miss yet another mark in its march toward the sale of medical marijuana — this one an assurance that sales could begin by the end of November. That is not going to happen.
According to Mark Hamlin, of the Ohio Department of Commerce, the two testing labs closest to opening are “tentatively” scheduled to open in mid-December. One of those is at Hocking Technical College in Nelsonville. (Last month, Hamlin said he thought the Nelsonville facility would open in early November).
During the continued delays, the State Board of Pharmacy has put its patient registry on hold. The board, reasonably, would like to have some idea when dispensaries might be open and the medical marijuana available for sale.
There is a great deal to be said for government working deliberately in an effort to get this rollout right. For now, we still are able to chalk up these delays to a genuine effort to cover all bases.
But as the delays pile up; as the state misses deadline after deadline, it will be harder for Ohioans who hope to find relief from their medical conditions with a prescription for medial marijuana to remain patient with the bureaucracy.
The Canton Repository, Nov. 11
Providing for the common defense is the top priority of Congress. In fact, according to the U.S. Constitution, national defense is the only mandatory function outlined for our federal lawmakers.
So it should come with some concern the number of senators and representatives with military experience elected to Congress will continue the downward trend that began in the 1970s, when nearly three-fourths of lawmakers were veterans.
A strong presence of military veterans in Congress provides the knowledge and experience to question a president on the appropriate use of military force, to oversee national security initiatives, to serve as advisers on foreign policy matters and to monitor progress on reforming the Department of Veterans Affairs, which is charged with providing health care and other services to eligible military veterans.
If we’re unlikely to elect veterans in huge numbers again, perhaps we at least can find more men and women who follow a military ethos, lawmakers willing to demonstrate such traits as honor, respect and integrity no matter the outside influence.
Whether you say, “Hooah” or “Oorah” or “Hooyah,” our country faces a joint mission: We must ensure its defense. One way: More veterans in Congress.
The Plain Dealer, Nov. 11
On Tuesday, Cleveland appellate court Judge Melody J. Stewart became the first African-American woman and the first African-American Democrat to be elected to the Ohio Supreme Court. True, Stewart’s election may have had more to do with being the highest-rated judicial candidate in this year’s Supreme Court contests than with her race — or party. In an odd quirk, Ohio judicial elections are partisan in primaries but nominally nonpartisan in general elections, meaning party labels weren’t on the Nov. 6 ballot.
But when Stewart and fellow Cleveland jurist Michael P. Donnelly take their seats next year as associate justices, the state’s high court will have at least two Democrats on the seven-justice bench for the first time in 15 years. The last time that happened was from 1995 to 2004 when the late Francis E. Sweeney Sr. of the Cleveland area and Toledo Democrat Alice Robie Resnick both served. Currently the Ohio Supreme Court is all-Republican, and all-white.
Change can often seem incremental in politics, and in the judiciary, but Ohioans in their votes last week affected a real difference on the state’s highest court.
The Star Beacon, Nov. 11
Years into the sexual abuse scandal that has rocked the Catholic Church, we still see signs that some in the Church’s institutional leadership still don’t get it.
Earlier this month, Bishop George V. Murry of the Youngstown Catholic Diocese released a list of about two dozen priests who have been “credibly accused” of sexual abuse of a minor in the Youngstown Diocese. Of those, almost one third spent time in Ashtabula County. But that fact was not known until several days after the names were released, which is an unfortunate microcosm for how the Church as an organization has handled the entire scandal.
Unfortunately, while we firmly believe the vast majority of those who serve in the Catholic Church are good-hearted men and women of faith, too often they are let down by the Church as an institution, whose leaders either were part of the cover up or who have put the harm the scandal has done to the Church above the damage the abuse has done to the victims.
Clearly a path for justice, no matter how late, is an important step and the Church should be leading the call.