Who deserves praise and criticism this week in Northern Utah?

Monday , October 30, 2017 - 4:30 AM1 comment


The Standard-Examiner Editorial Board hashes out the positions we take on the Opinion page. Here’s what members recommended last week for praise and criticism:

THUMBS UP: To Clifton’s, the women’s apparel store that stayed in business in downtown Ogden for nearly 72 years.

  • RELATED: “Clifton's closes in Ogden after seven decades on Washington Boulevard”

Being a small business owner is no easy game. Take a second to consider how drastically women’s clothing has changed since 1964 and it makes the feat all the more impressive.

They’ll be closing for good before the year is over. Their accomplishment is remarkable.

Ogden began as a town built by the railroad — self-sustaining business was all there was. Then the box stores moved in 40 years ago, the rail industry largely left and the city’s focus shifted from downtown to shopping malls. But in the last 25 years, that’s changed again with a rededicated focus on locally owned shops.

Clifton’s was there through it all.

Hopefully, the next enterprise to inhabit the 2254 Washington Blvd. will be local and supported by Ogdenites, too.

THUMBS DOWN: To apathy for the Great Salt Lake.

Today, 50 percent of the once mighty lake is exposed. While we might not feel it now, but if we stop diverting all the water flowing into it, the contaminated dust from the lakebed could wreak havoc on the health of everyone along the Wasatch Front.

  • RELATED: “Salty lakes are disappearing around the world and we’re to blame”

Don’t believe it? Ask the people of Owens Valley in California. Water from Owens Lake, saline like the GSL, was piped to Los Angeles in the 20th century. The lake dried up and the people suffered. It took billions of dollars to mitigate and it will take billions more to keep the dust problem at bay.

The warning signs are all around us. Tens of thousands of birds are dying from botulism. Though last winter saw tremendous snowfall, it barely inched the lake up from its near-record low point. A report published Monday shows human consumption — not climate change — is to blame.

Many Wasatch Front municipalities charge a flat rate for secondary water use. And some places don’t measure water use at all.

We have to be more proactive about our water supply before we’re in big trouble.

THUMBS UP: To the cities, police departments, schools, churches and other organizations that sponsor “trunk or treat” events.

These are safe, community-centered ways for kids to get all the fun of Halloween without causing anxiety for parents, who don’t need to worry about kids getting hit by cars, tainted candy, predators or kids making dumb, mischief-driven decisions.

Halloween has changed a lot over the years. Parents used to feel less hesitation about sending kids out trick-or-treating.

Attend a trunk-or-treat. Or, better yet, organize one yourself. It’s a great opportunity to meet neighbors and new friends and ensure a safe, sweet Halloween for all.

THUMBS DOWN: To BYU’s honor code, which still lacks specificity and is clearly being used to cause mental, emotional and physical harm to transgender students.

Private schools have the right to set their own rules for attendance, but at what point does a social responsibility not to harm others become paramount? After it was reported that the school was using its honor code to punish rape victims, transgender people are seeking clarity on their status in the church.

An extensive report by the Daily Herald’s Braley Dodson outlines the issue through the eyes of those who lived or are living through it.

“The problem is it is all unknown. There are no guidelines, no doctrine, so you play leadership roulette with your bishops and it is the same at BYU,” Kris Irvin told Dodson. “Sometimes you’ll be in a supportive classroom, and sometimes you will not.”

To prevent an issue as devastating and expansive as the use of the honor code against sexual assault victims, they need to proactively address its response and treatment of people who are in other categories of the LGBTQ communities.

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