Opinion: Raising cigarette tax will help save lives

Meyers

Tobacco is the only product that when used as directed will kill you. Each year, 1,600 Montanans needlessly die from deadly tobacco products. Nationwide, smoking causes more than 480,000 deaths per year, or roughly one in every five deaths. Furthermore, for every person who dies from smoking, at least 30 more are suffering from serious disease and disability caused by smoking.

Yet, Montana hasn’t raised its tobacco tax since 2005. Every state that has significantly increased its tobacco tax has seen the sales of tobacco decrease, leading to fewer kids starting to smoke and a lot less preventable disease and death. Continue Reading →

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New therapy holds out hope for depression sufferers

TSM

W.H., a 38-year-old woman, has suffered from major depression and anxiety, as well as post-traumatic stress disorder and trichotillomania—an impulse-control disorder sometimes called hair-pulling disorder—since she was 19 years old.

Over the years, she has tried a variety of anti-depressants, mood stabilizers and anti-anxiety medications, with little relief. Continue Reading →

Montana Viewpoint: A house without walls

JE

Donald Trump’s presidential transition efforts, heavy on creating vacancies, light on filling them, reminds me of a friend of mine who likes to remodel houses.

Well, remodel is the wrong word. He likes to tear houses apart. Room by room by room. Within the first month the kitchen would be gutted except for the appliances. All the wall studs were exposed and the floor was torn up. Continue Reading →

Ekalaka’s ‘Dino Shindig’ wins honors at tourism conference

Masama

The Dino Shindig, put on every summer since 2013 by the Carter County Museum in Ekalaka, was named “Event of the Year” Monday night during the Governor’s Conference on Tourism and Recreation in Helena.

The two-day event celebrates paleontology and brings in speakers and attendees from all over the world to Ekalaka, way down in the southeast corner of Montana. Last year, one of the speakers was Kirk Johnson, director of the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History. Continue Reading →

Local group forms to fight use of animals in circuses

Protest

A newly formed group opposed to the use of animals in circuses is planning a series of protests during the 66th Annual Al Bedoo Shrine Circus in Billings.

Montanans Against Animal Circuses is planning its main protest for noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 1, at the Shrine Auditorium, 1125 Broadwater Ave., but it intends to have at least some protesters at each of the nine shows scheduled for March 29 through April 2. Continue Reading →