Category Archives: Common Sense

Guns and Public Health

Public Health Experts Reportedly Targeting Gun Violence as ‘Social Disease’

On The Blaze

Before I dive into this I want to be really clear on something.

I welcome all honest inquiry.

You know what? The truth is. It is immutable. However, it becomes readily apparent in the article that the doctors in question are not after honest inquiry. These individuals are after a result. They have a conclusion in search of confirmatory evidence.

“This [mass killings] is what we’re going to have to live with if we have more personal access to firearms.”

There is the conclusion.

The statement immediately previous illustrates what I would call some fuzzy thinking:

“What I’m struggling with is, is this the new social norm?”

What an interesting question. I have a question of my own.

How can something that happened a total of three times in 2011 be any kind of norm?”

Source

In those killings a total of 18 people died and 21 were injured. Each person is to be mourned but are we to say that these deaths are more bitter and more tragic than say the 32,885 who died in automobile accidents in 2010 (2011 was not listed in my source at the time of writing)? I could argue that Cars are the distressing “social norm” but that would be silly too. Aside from the fact that millions of people arrive safely in vehicles every day that number does not mention that lives are saved by cars. Ambulances, fire tucks, and police cars spring immediately to mind but how about folks who drove themselves or were driven to the hospital? What about the cars that the nurses and doctors used cars and buses to get to the hospital?

I could not find stats for lives saved by vehicles. People don’t usually collect information on things not going wrong. There is a similar problem with positive, life-saving gun uses; however there have been a few studies on it. The best study I’ve found says there are 1.5 million defensive gun uses each year. Some people may think that number is too high. I say fine, cut it in half. Still too big? Then cut it in half again. There is simply no way that the actions of three people in 2011 can compare to the good done, the lives saved and health preserved, by good people with the tools they needed to protect themselves.

These doctors are not looking at that.

Fire Extinguishers a Fire Hazard

April 12th, 2011

I just read George Hill’s blog and came across this post.”Great Britain Just Went Full Retard” He was discussing the news article “Extinguishers banned as a fire safety hazard” You read that right. In the UK a fire extinguisher is now considered a fire hazard. How do they get there? Someone might try to fight a fire that is too big if they have access to a fire extinguisher.

This sort of “thinking” drives me nuts. It’s infuriating. On the face of it the idea seems too stupid to argue. However, this is not the first place that I have heard of this sort of non-sense. UK pubs switching to plastic pint glasses — so the glass can’t be used as a weapon — is an example.

I have figured out what the problem is.

Judgement.

I am a big fan of safety. I wear eye and ear protection when I’m using tools that need them. I am a zealous promoter and enforcer of the four cardinal safety rules for gun handling. I wear my seat belt. I am also a big fan of safety testing. I don’t like melamine in my milk. I don’t like lead in toys. I don’t like decrepit bridges. If something is dangerous though it looks safe, something needs to be done. This is not what the “Safety” folks are doing with fire extinguishers. They are not proposing the removal of a dangerous item that will function other than as intended. They are trying to find what the dumbest person with the poorest judgement would do and then putting everyone else at risk by trying to save that stupid person from himself.

You do not make people safe by removing options. You make people safe through training. Fighting a fire that is too big for your skill or equipment is a VERY dangerous thing to do. PEOPLE NEED TO KNOW THAT! They should not be removing options for fighting fire. They should be educating people.

We put plugs into electrical outlets to protect children who don’t know better from hurting themselves. We are not children. We are free men and women. If a danger is identified we need to be informed not “protected.”

Casey the Punisher

March 16th, 2011

Video Of Bullying Victim Bodyslamming His Bully Goes Viral, Media Firestorm Likely To Ensue
From Sports Grid

I don’t hear it discussed in the media. I don’t ever remember hearing about it in school as a child. In fact the only time I remember it being discussed was by my father when he was trying to communicate important information about being a man to a boy (me) who didn’t quite get it. Respect. There is never a reason to be disrespectful to anybody. This has nothing to do with being nice. This has nothing to do with getting along and liking each other.

Respect is very simple. You don’t interfere with another person’s stuff. You don’t interfere with another person’s body. You don’t insult another person. That’s pretty much it.

Each one of us has a right to DEMAND respect. It is owed to us but we can’t demand more respect than what we have given. So now we come to the video. Our main characters are the bully runt (I have no name so I describe his character and size) and Casey Heynes. I own that we only see what is in the video and we don’t know what happened before, but what is there allows us to speak with authority about a few things. Let’s start with the punchline. Young Mr. Heynes was in the right – 100%. I see the possibility of no other view. Even if we find out that Mr. Heynes earlier had been provoking the bully runt (and it looks like it was the exact opposite), the bully runt experienced only what he should have expected from his actions.

I’d like to articulate the specifics of the reasonableness of Mr. Heynes actions. The bully runt is small and fast but still can deliver a solid punch. Look at how Mr. Heyne’s head is rocked back by the initial assault by the bully runt. Mr. Heynes is strong but not as fast as the bully runt. The event unfolds with the bully runt harassing Mr. Heyes by grabbing his shirt (un-wanted physical contact). Then the bully runt assaults Mr. Heynes with a solid blow to the face. Mr. Heynes does not respond physically. Mr. Heynes is punched four times in the stomach before responding. The bully runt has demonstrated that he is not interested in leaving Mr Heynes alone. It is not reasonable for Mr. Heynes to leave. The threat is the bully runt and not the location. He cannot out run the bully runt and he now must defend himself. Since he does not have the speed of his attacker, Mr. Heynes uses his greater physical strength to his advantage and ends the fight.

“What if the “bully runt” as you call him was your son? What would you think then?” I don’t know. I sincerely hope I wouldn’t raise such a disrespectful and foolish child but I think after watching the video I would tell him, “Stupid should hurt.”

The People and the Law

Tank Chair Video

Disabled Man Banned From Driving Wheelchair Tank

We hear it all the time on the news, “the rule of law.” It’s a big deal. The rule of law prevents life from turning into a chaotic game of Calvin Ball. I am a big fan of law. I used to be a police officer. However I have a problem when the people who enforce the law forget that the law was made for us! We do not serve the law. The law is there to improve our quality of life. Each law enacted is there in an effort to solve a problem. The problem a law is trying to solve is its spirit.

I am not interested in researching the history of wheelchair law in the UK so I’m going to make some assumptions. I can’t imagine that the laws the Tank Chair violates were enacted to prevent those bound to a wheelchair from having greater freedom. I would guess that the laws are there for standards relating to accommodating wheelchairs in buildings and barring people from doing crazy things like calling their cars wheelchairs.

Off the top of my head I can think of a few ways to address these issues:

  • One bound to a wheelchair has no right to expect any premises to accommodate an oversize chair.
  • When in an oversize chair it is the “driver’s” responsibility to accommodate pedestrians on the side walk.
  • Something like the Tank Chair may be on otherwise restricted walks and roads for brief stretches.
  • And finally, a Tank Chair is not actually a tank.

Please! This is a guy who just wants to engage life more fully. Have these people forgotten how blessed they are to have the use of their legs? Perhaps they are wheelchair bound and begrudge Mr. Starr’s extremely generous friend. I would think it was obvious that we should try to facilitate the freedom of the not-so-able-bodied.

It seems like some folks are only happy when they get to tell someone he can’t do something. It also seems like there are a disproportionate number of people like this in government.