Tag Archives: Healthcare

A Teacher in Every Gun Store

Teacher, Victoria Soto, 27, misled the gunman in Newtown, Connecticut, told him her children were in the gym, when she had hidden them elsewhere; she died to save her students.

This simple phrase, “A Teacher in every gun store,” was posted on Facebook by a friend.

It was in counterpoint to the crazy idea that we should arm every teacher in every class room, with a PPK or assault rifle, and have a cop in every school – but not every classroom.

Nor should we overlook the “other” substitute initiative for gun reform, that this nation should take a closer look at those who are mentally ill. Unfortunately, we’re talking detection and discrimination, scapegoating really, not about acceptance or treatment.

Consider the fact that Asperger’s Syndrome, a developmental disorder, suffered by our latest horrific shooter, Adam Lanza, is not a disorder associated with violence.

The NRA’s Wayne LaPierre, undeterred by Lanza’s mental state, railed against the nation’s mental health: “The truth is, that our society is populated by an unknown number of genuine monsters. People that are so deranged, so evil, so possessed by voices and driven by demons, that no sane person can ever possibly comprehend them.”

Is LaPierre suggesting a policy that every gun owner must undergo a mental examination at the time of a weapon’s purchase or transfer? Hardly!

LaPierre calculated he had to divert the nation from any discussion of true gun reform, with forehead slapping distractions. He also sought to instruct the Republican T-party members in Congress that this stratagem was how to defend gun reforms against those who rebel against the notion that the gunfight at the OK Corral should be the law enforcement model we emulate.

LaPierre railed at the media for its coverage (even as he manipulated the media to cover him), refusing to answer any questions.

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On large, unexpected expenses

Once in a while there appears a post or a letter to the editor so earnestly, hilariously dumb that we must sit for a moment of awestruck silence. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Ben Belrose:

Dear Editor: There are certain expenses in life that are “normal” ongoing expenses that people pay for out of their budget. We buy insurance to cover large, unexpected expenses.

Years ago, the common plan was described as “major medical” which was designed to help people cover medical hospitalization, i.e., expenses that could not be covered by their normal budget. A routine visit to the doctor for a cold or the flu was paid out of the available normal resources…

The purpose of this letter is to establish the idea that reproductive health, which includes control over conception, is not properly categorized as a health care expense. He would like for us to consider categorizing it instead as one of many “normal living expenses” like buying gasoline or “daily trips to the coffee bar.” Continue reading

Medicine, Progress, Politics and HIV

An incredible, amazing headline was posted on CurrentTV’s website this morning:

San Francisco Man First Person Ever To Be Cured Of AIDS

In essence, a bone marrow transplant from a man with an incredibly rare immunity to HIV was able to, apparently, cure another man’s HIV. This is the kind of “miracle of science” we’ve become all too used to. We will do well to reflect on where these incredible advances come from.

This incredible breakthrough is the direct result of progressive perspectives and policies, and flies in the face of conservative opposition and backwardness. At each step of the way towards this advancement, progressive ideas made things possible, even as conservative voices decried the emergence of hope or acknowledgement of human need.

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Pound foolish elitism

One third of the children in Virginia are overweight or obese. Not coincidentally, soft drinks and other “foods” containing high-fructose corn syrup are readily available in our public schools. And now, thanks to Governor Bob McDonnell’s veto, there will be no half hour per day of physical education for public school students. According to the governor, we can’t afford to take time away from preparing for standardized tests or the cost of additional instruction. Continue reading