Your Views for December 29

Holiday wishes

Dear Hawaii County officials,

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Please allow me to make a few 2018 New Year’s resolutions for you.

1. Please widen the intersection at Puainako Street and Kilauea Avenue and add left-turn arrows.

2. Traffic and pedestrian lights also are badly needed at the entrances to Walmart and Target on Makaala Street.

If these plans already are in the works, please make them public so that I, along with hundreds of other motorists and pedestrians who frequent these areas, no longer have to keep bugging you about it.

Happy new year!

Rick LaMontagne

Hilo

Drug abuse costly

I am a Hilo High School student and my goal for this letter is to remind people that drug abuse hasn’t died out and why it’s bad (if it wasn’t obvious).

About 570,000 people in the U.S. die annually from drug use. People who abuse alcohol and/or drugs attempt suicide six times as frequently as people who don’t. Illegal drugs can damage the brain, heart and other important organs or shut them down completely.

It doesn’t even have to be illegal drugs. People also can become addicted to prescription drugs, which sadly is more common than people would think.

This very day in the U.S., 2,500 youth (ages 12-17) will abuse a prescription pain reliever for the first time. Prescription drug abuse, while most prevalent in the U.S., is a problem in many areas around the world, including Europe, South Africa and South Asia.

In the U.S. alone, more than 15 million people abuse prescription drugs.

Drugs will make people do things they will regret. Many people in poverty use drugs to cope with the feeling of being poor, which puts them in the cycle of financial loss. Multiple cases of child abuse have been caused by parents using drugs.

Whatever our prejudices, the truth is, given the right/wrong circumstances — be it stress, abuse or genetics — anyone can be a drug addict.

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Keoua Ma‘e-Rowland

Hilo