Editorial voices from elsewhere

July 18, 2014

Excerpts from recent editorials in newspapers in the United States and abroad as compiled by the Associated Press:

Herald-Dispatch, Huntington, W.Va.

Shaun Hughes was a 26-year-old student at Harvard University when he was diagnosed with skin cancer in the 1980s.

After surgery, he understandably was looking for ways to protect himself from the dangerous ultraviolet rays of the sun. In addition to sunscreen, he added layers of clothes for outdoor activities, but as researchers in Australia were finding about the same time, many types of traditional clothing actually provide less protection than you think.

Hughes went on to found a company that helped develop new types of lightweight fabrics that are more comfortable and provide much more sun protection. Today, there are many new options for more protective shirts and clothing for adults and children.

But health experts warn that too many people still take too few precautions when it comes to sun exposure. Skin cancer has become the most common form of cancer in the United States with more than 2 million people diagnosed annually. Only a small percentage of those cases involve melanoma, the most deadly form of skin cancer, but even the less dangerous forms can be disfiguring or cause other problems if they progress.

But melanoma rates are increasing, too, particularly among young people.

Especially during these summers months when many of us are getting more sun, it is important to remember that unprotected exposure to the sun can damage skin in just 15 minutes, according to the West Virginia Health Cooperative Inc., the Mountain State’s new nonprofit health insurer.

The Commercial Appeal, Memphis, Tenn.

Against daunting odds, Brazil pulled off what is universally and rightly regarded as a successful soccer World Cup.

It is not too much to say that the fate of the government of President Dilma Rousseff, who faces an election in October, was riding on Brazil being able to pull off a major international sporting event. And in 2016, Brazil will play host to the Summer Olympics, an event that will dwarf the World Cup in size and cost.

Before the World Cup there were riots by Brazilians, who felt the money could be better spent, for example, on schools and housing. Having been deprived of promised civic benefits once, it’s hard to imagine Brazilians exhibiting similar forbearance for the Summer Olympics.

Miracles do happen; the fact that Brazil pulled off the World Cup was one, but maybe a second one is too much to ask for.

New Straits Times, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Although air travel had never been devoid of bad guys pre-9/11, it is a distinction that Sept. 11, 2001 marked a definite loss of innocence regarding air travel. Post-9/11, very little affecting air security is left to chance.

Starting this week, for instance, all passengers in United States-bound flights flying out of certain airports in the world may be asked to turn on their mobile devices at security checkpoints to prove that it is not a cleverly designed bomb.

At the same time, as airlines and airports try to cater for their ever-growing clientele, the demand is for better and faster service. For this reason, and because automation reduces the need to pay for frontline human personnel, most modern airports and airlines have gradually been converting to the self check-in system. The only problem with the fully self-service system is that it cuts out a lot of human eyeballs, which are essential in assessing the behavior and body language of passengers before they get on the plane. The more layers of frontline staff a passenger had to go through, the better the chances of someone spotting something. With several layers removed, will there be sufficient other security measures in place to pick up the slack?

The need for speed should not jeopardize the need for security.



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