Predictably, the news about Ceres approving a medicinal marijuana dispensary was met with clashing viewpoints. Some felt it was overdue aid for the medically challenged and the others feel it will be to the degradation of the community.
Shawn Robinson wrote on the Ceres Courier Facebook page: "I don't use it, but I definitely believe those that need it should have the avenues to get it. Good job Ceres."
Veronica Daniel opined: "Great now we get to smell the dump and this junk too."
A Facebook user named Bill N Jamie FourGs shared the opinion: "Slippery Slope Ceres! Why raise our utilities if they are going to be a "dope" city from here on out?! Our leaders are idiots!"
It is rather amusing watching city leaders - who once said "no way" to dispensaries - tripping over themselves to approve such uses because of the big bucks offered to city coffers.
I have mixed feelings about marijuana, something I have never used, by the way. I believe we have a whole generation of younger people turning to marijuana and opiods which is pre-empting them from getting on in life. I opposed Prop. 64, which allows the adult use of recreational marijuana even though federally it is still classified as a drug, but I think but if chemicals extracted from marijuana can help those with medical problems, so be it.
Lots of Americans believe as do I that there are a lot of people who claim they need cannabis when they really just want a cover to get high. You can get a doctor to do just about anything.
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Ramona Moore, a 14-year resident of Ceres, gave her depressing take on the state of affairs in Ceres at the Oct. 23 City Council meeting. She cited the coming increases to the city water bills and lamented about code violations not being enforced, such as garbage cans left out in public view and chicken coops in a front yard in the area of Strawberry Fields Park. She considers the city's approval of a marijuana dispensary as "depressing news." Ramona said her daughter left to go to the Army "and doesn't want to come back and it broke my heart because I've been here a long time and I guess I better move." She said "there's going to be more chaos, more garbage so what are you going to do about it?"
All the mayor could ask is where is the chicken coop and have city staff look into the matter.
What about garbage cans, she asked. Mayor Vierra said "code enforcement ... I think is all important to us ... but the challenge we have right now is we only have one code enforcement (officer) for a city that's over 47,000 people so we're open to and we're looking at whether we might be able to utilize some volunteers."
How about volunteers going out, handing out warning notices stating that the city law requires you to hide your cans on non-collection days or face a fine? If the activity continues, write citations. Leaving garbage cans out would stop if fines were implemented. If you're not going to enforce the law, why have it in place? Rescind the law and let everything break down.
At some point, with obscene amounts of pot money coming into city coffers, the city should be able to afford more code enforcement officers, if that's really a priority and not lip service.
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Did you catch my appearance on "Pawn Stars"? I missed the live first airing on Oct. 23 but caught it my Apple TV. In case you want to see it, I'm in the episode titled, "Pawn or Bust," which is the third episode of Season 15.
In the episode, Rick Harrison and I talk about Buffalo Bill as I took a signed cabinet photo of William to the pawn shop in Las Vegas exactly a year ago. Harrison didn't offer me what I wanted so I brought it back home.
I can tell you that I had a lot to say about my knowledge of Buffalo Bill but it was edited out to make Harrison look like the know-it-all.
There's a lot about the show that isn't as real as you might think - down to the actual room where it's filmed. But contractually I am bound not to say.
I think Pawn Stars is slipping in its ratings. Like all shows, someday it will be a footnote in cable TV history.
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Since 2011 I have tended to the illnesses and hospital experiences of my late wife, my grandmother and my mother. In that time I have encountered a number of nurses and could not help but notice how many were less than the picture of health themselves. Not so much in the Bay Area hospital but in Valley hospitals and care facilities. Now comes a study from the Ball State University in Indiana. It notes that many of America's nurses admit they are stressed out, consuming too much junk food and getting too little sleep. They are burned out from longer hours and stressful work.
The study, called The Impact of Perceived Stress and Coping Adequacy on the Health of Nurses: A Pilot Investigation, of 120 nurses working in the Midwest found that most nurses had poor health habits:
· 92 percent had moderate-to-very high stress levels.
· 78 percent slept less than eight hours per night.
· 69 percent did not exercise regularly.
· 63 percent consumed fewer than five servings of fruits and vegetables per day.
· 22 percent were classified as binge drinkers.
The study also found that when confronted with workplace stress, 70 percent of nurses reported that they consumed more junk food and 63 percent said that they used food as a coping mechanism. Hence, that's why you see so many overweight nurses.
"Nurses need to improve their lifestyles and health behaviors, take advantage of all health benefits available to them and learn to manage stress and conflicts at the workplace," said
Jagdish Khubchandani, a professor who was part of a multi-university team that examined how nurses cope with stress. He says management has a big role to play in providing health promotion services and employee assistance programs to help deal with stress-related poor health behaviors, such as addiction.
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Have you heard about this despicable, dirty political TV commercial running in the Virginia governor's race? The Democratic group Latino Victory Fund (LVF) has launched an ad against conservative Ed Gillespie which shows a pickup adorned with a Confederate flag and a "Gillespie for Governor" bumper sticker chasing - and presumably running over -black, Muslim and Latino children. The ad ends with the words, "Reject hate."
So if you're for protecting the U.S. borders, protecting the country's sovereignty and vetting foreigners to ensure they are not terrorists, that's equivalent to running down children with a pickup? Really sick and a rather illogical conclusion. The sad thing is the ad will be effective because some people are easily swayed and gullible and don't do their homework.
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And local congressional candidate, Democrat TJ Cox calls it "dark and scary times" from his view - for different reasons. In yesterday's email appeal for campaign cash, he writes: "President Trump and his Congressional allies like Jeff Denham are going all out to rip affordable healthcare, real middle-class tax cuts, clean air, clean water, and Medicaid from the hardworking families of California's 10th Congressional District."
Really, Mr. Cox? The same old tiring one-track mantra of dirty air and dirty water? Give it a rest, TJ, and come up with something new. Obamacare was doomed as designed and most people know it is imploding. The real question is why would anyone give you money, Mr. Cox? So you can come up with TV commercials showing Denham pushing grandma off the cliff? I can't wait to see your mailers that embrace your theme, "Denham and Trump are so alike, it's scay!"
Do you have any feedback about this column? Let Jeff know by emailing him at firstname.lastname@example.org. He will read it, promise.