Monday, July 23, 2012

Gun control. Right now, members of the NRA are worried that the recent shooting in Aurora, Colo. means that howl will be on for laws restricting gun ownership. They are afraid that such laws will restrict their Second Amendment rights. Presidential candidates are afraid of the NRA’s political clout, so the two leading candidates are not going to address the issue, according to news reports. Mr. Obama and Mr. Romney, I am looking at you. I wish one of you would get a spine. I agree that the Founding Fathers placed the Second Amendment high up in the Bill of Rights because they had first-hand experience with government taking away weapons from those they considered “dangerous.” (Read enemies of the state.) OK, I understand that. I don’t own firearms, but enjoy going to the range on occasion. But it seems to me that the purchase of two handguns and two rifles (one an automatic) in a few weeks should have raised a flag. Certainly wholesale purchases of ammunition should have been cause for concern. My suggestion: Allow the purchase of weapons, but set it up so that the law enforcement entities that issue permits get a red flag if someone in their jurisdiction purchases and registers more than X number of firearms in Y time period. I leave the X and Y up to legislatures as I don’t know what is reasonable. Maybe someone is a new hunter and purchased weapons for herself and her daughter. This is something a quick query to the weapon purchaser can clear up. I hate to put people in law enforcement in danger, but I think they would rather make an in-person visit to the multiple gun purchasers than clean up a tragedy. Ditto for ammunition. And yes, if you purchase more than X number of rounds in Y time period, the local police should be informed. Certainly someone who is doing a lot of shooting to prepare for an event can explain themselves. (BTW, Kudo to the USA Olympic Shooting Team

Friday, July 6, 2012

Hi all, Sorry I haven’t been on in a while. Got a job, got laid off (THANK YOU BP) got another job and got laid off. Such is the economy. The last job was in Mississippi, and thereby hangs this next post. Or rant. You decide. I was pleased to get Mississippi Blue Cross/Blue Shield as one of the benefits of working my last job. When I was laid off, I decided to COBRA the benefits so I would have medical coverage while looking for work. It’s expensive, but worth it should I get seriously sick. I moved back to my mother’s home in Alabama to save what little $ I have. My mother is a great person, and she’s putting up with me and the two cats. I needed to see my doctor, first to get back in touch, get some forms filled out and get an Rx refilled. I was overjoyed when her receptionist said I could have an appointment the next day. Got to the office and handed over the Mississippi BC/BS card. Saw the receptionist look over a couple of pages on her desk and scurry to the back. This was not good. I was asked to see my MD’s husband, who handles the business end of the practice. He explained that while the practice was a “National” BC/BS provider, Mississippi insisted on their own set of forms to be filled out to have claims covered. He showed me the inches-thick package of paperwork. No, I would not want to slog through them either. But … So, despite HAVING insurance, I can’t use it. At least not with the doctor I had been seeing for the past five years. At least not unless I pony up the cost of a visit, which I did. Next is a trip to the local hospital to see if they accept Mississippi BC/BS coverage. To say the least, the exchequer is empty. What part of “national” does Mississippi not understand? I know they left the Union in the Civil War, but I thought that had been dealt with. I thought they had figured out that they were part of the United States, and that they should go along with national programs. Mississippians are touchy about being seen as ignorant yahoos on the national stage. With good reason. If a California comedian wants to portray a hick, they paste on a Southern accent and say they are from the Magnolia State. That is insulting. BUT, Mississippi, you are a bunch of ignorant such-and-sos if you don’t recognize an MD in Alabama is a national BC/BS provider. And that sometimes people have to leave the state. Fix this and maybe, just maybe, you can do something about the way you are seen across the country.