Laurels & lances: Marijuana, Scouts, violence, drugs, and the Super Bowl
Laurel: To the Wolf administration for committing to gauging the public’s sentiment on marijuana legalization. Can’t get much more thorough than Lt. Gov. John Fetterman’s plan to visit 67 counties. Oh no, Toto, I don’t think we’re in Harrisburg anymore — or even Braddock!
Laurel: To the Boy Scouts for transitioning to Scouts BSA. Starting last week, the organization got a new name and a new acceptance of girls and young women who can now participate in what has traditionally been literally a boys’ club. This opens the door to honors and achievements previously denied, including becoming Eagle Scouts — no insult intended to the Girl Scouts’ equivalent Gold Award.
Lance: To a couple of Penn Hills bars where people have been hurt or died. Let’s be honest — they’re bad places. In fact, the “nuisance” designation that is under consideration is probably an understatement. But …
Laurel: Officials are aware and are working to fix the problem. Police Chief Howard Burton is stepping up a law enforcement presence after “escalated” violence, including two recent shootings and a brawl in which two women were stabbed. The Bureau of Liquor Control Enforcement and the Allegheny County District Attorney’s Office also are involved.
Lance: To Ranier’s Pharmacy in Jeannette. The pharmacy’s drug compounding laboratory finally agreed to stop producing compounded sterile drugs, nearly three years after a U.S. Food and Drug Administration investigation first found “serious deficiencies.” The medicines marketed as sterile were not, according to the FDA. It took numerous federal inspections and warnings, both public and private, before the pharmacy stopped making the problematic products.
Laurel: To Freeport, Fox Chapel and Leechburg high schools for promoting awareness about opioid abuse. Kids are at risk for becoming caught up in an epidemic, and they need honest information and serious tools to stay safe in the middle of a statewide and nationwide problem. The three schools recently scored awards in a competition for creating PSAs.
“We are really proud of the work that our students created for the opioid addiction video,” Leechburg Area Superintendent Tiffany Nix said.
Laurel: To Pittsburgh’s presence in the Super Bowl. There might not have been a shot at another trophy this year, but a list of Steelers stars in the NFL 100 commercial (including a recreation of the greatest play of all time) and Andy Warhol’s Burger King spot with a Heinz ketchup cameo were some of the best moments in a decidedly blah game.