Personal · Politics · Rants

Gun Control & Other Ramblings 

It’s appalling that people care more about their right to own weaponry just for the hell of it, just because they can, than they do about the safety of our people. Gun control means exactly what it sounds like; it does NOT mean citizens would lose all their rights to own firearms. I don’t understand the confusion.

I don’t understand the obsession Americans have with guns. It embarrasses me, honestly. It absolutely mortifies me that our citizens care so deeply about the second amendment yet completely disregard the first.

1st amendment: right to practice religion freely, the right to free speech, press, and peaceful assembly.
Yet right now, our citizens are torn apart over peaceful protests regarding discrimination, news channels being honest or “fake”, and the “loss of morality” because we’re not a fully Christian nation anymore. How are these currently enormous concerns supportive of the 1st amendment?
Often, when other countries think of Americans, they think: “stupid, greedy, gun-loving, and bible-obsessed”. I want to be known for being progressive, caring, open, and FREE. A free country is NOT a country full of mass shootings, religious judgment, discrimination, and authoritative leaders. We are not currently concerned about the biggest issues in our country. We care so much about the little things, about the things that DO NOT MATTER. 
We care if someone has a different skin color instead of caring about humans being treated equally. We care about whether or not someone is wealthy instead of caring about WHY so many of our people live in poverty. We care about a fetus being aborted or not instead of caring about the future life of the child and mother.

We currently care SO MUCH about people “disrespecting the troops and the flag” by kneeling instead of caring about homeless and disabled veterans. If you’re worked up about the protests but don’t spend a second thinking about the amount of veterans that can’t support themselves now, you don’t really care that much. You just want to be angry at protestors. If you’re angry about the protests but also think people shouldn’t get government assistance, you don’t care that much about people that have fought for us. If you think people should just “get a job”, you don’t really care. People like disabled war veterans need government assistance to live. If you want to be mad about troops and veterans not getting the respect they deserve, be mad at the people who can’t get their selfish heads out of their asses enough to think about what anyone else goes through in life.

We care if “man loves man” because the Bible says it’s wrong. The Bible was written long ago, and the Bible did not write our constitution. It was also written by men and didn’t exactly address lesbianism as if did “man with man”. I believe in practicing whatever religion you wish to practice, but I also believe in a progressive world. Religion would not be where it is today if not for progressive thinkers that spiked change. It is okay to change, to progress! If religion hadn’t progressed, women would still have less rights. Progression doesn’t cease to exist once your personal, individual needs are met. We have become a less secular nation within the last twenty years, and that is the opposite of progression. We have separation of church and state for a reason, and that reason is NOT to abandon morality or create evil generations. We cannot expect to have an inclusive nation if we expect everyone to follow the same religion and beliefs. That is not logical nor is it fair.

We care about collecting guns because we legally can instead of caring about safety! How selfish is that?! Yes, the constitution says people should be allowed firearms for their protection, but do you realize how much firearms have changed since that amendment was written?! No ordinary citizen needs a semi-automatic weapon for protection, and if they do, it’s because whoever they need protecting from probably also has a weapon that shouldn’t be legally obtainable.

But Shanon, “guns don’t kill people, people kill people”. Right, no shit, but they often do so with guns. And what about those “horrible accidents” where a gun goes off and kills a child because someone didn’t put the safety on? The person that didn’t secure their gun properly IS at fault, yet these instances are often referred to as “horrible accidents”. Yet mental illness cases are not often to referred to as horrible accidents. Mentally ill people do not receive the care, support, and/or treatment they need, which can lead to events like the Sandy Hook shooting. You simply can’t have it both ways, people; either guns are dangerous or people are ALWAYS to blame.
However, I think it’s a bit of both. Since people are nowhere near recognizing and understanding mental illnesses though, we have to address the dangers involving guns. We have to. Guns are lethal; therefore every single gun owner should have a THOROUGH background search and should be even more thoroughly trained on how to properly hand,e and secure a gun. There should be NO CASES where a gun “goes off by accident”. To me, that’s an “accident” that makes guns completely unworthy of the trouble.

Ordinary citizens should not be allowed to walk around in public with a firearm visible. It. Is. Completely. Unnecessary. It causes unease and anxiety and can lead to tragic, irreversible damage. You cannot predict the behavior of others in situations, especially in populated areas. Drugs are illegal for this same reason. Alcohol consumption is monitored for this same reason. There is an age of consent for this same reason. You might be responsible but other people aren’t and the world consists of a plural you, not a singular one.
We make sacrifices as human beings to make this world peaceful for all. Think outside of yourself and realize, whether you’re a gun owner or not, guns and danger run hand in hand. You might be a responsible gun owner, but not all people are! It’s unfortunate, but it’s how the world is; we’ve learned this since we were children. The worst time to have such a selfish and childish mentality is when guns are involved. Guns often complicate situations and cause conflicts to become deadly; we all know this. However, some people think the answer to gun issues is “more guns!”, which is essentially fighting fire with fire. To deny that guns cause harm is to deny that car wrecks occur.

If you want to hunt, that’s fine. If you want a gun for protection, that’s fine. You do NOT need a collection of deadly weapons only necessary in the military. Arguing with that shows shallow-mindedness. And yes, I’m well aware that “people always find a way”. Again, no shit. I do not see why we should start facing issues with that mentality. People still commit murder in prison and we haven’t stopped imprisoning people. “People still find a way to sell and smoke weed and it’s illegal!”. Yeah, but you can’t grow guns, and botany is easier than weapon assembly. Along with this, most people don’t use weed to kill 50+ people at concerts. People always find their ways, but why not make it as difficult as possible to obtain deadly weapons?!

People that are pro gun control do not hope to rid the world of guns, we simply want to make it a safer, more peaceful place.

Disability · Personal · Politics

Trump… “care”

I’m currently shaking out of anger. It’s well known that I’m a “flaming liberal” as some so respectfully call me, so you can imagine where I’m going with this. If you are triggered by us “flaming liberal” types and if you cannot read opposing thoughts without closing off your rationality and respectfulness, I ask you, politely, to move on. 

As we know, the House of Representatives has passed the American Health Care Act and we’re now awaiting the Senate’s approval or disapproval. I’m absolutely sick over this entire thing. First, I’ll admit that the Affordable Care Act was not perfect. Honestly, what can be perfect today? I saw people complaining and moaning about how their insurance was going up and it was less spectacular than it used to be, and to that I thought: good to know you’re more concerned about yourself, that you’re worked up about slightly less coverage for you in order for others to have any coverage at all. Call me crazy, but I’d rather have to pay a little more if that means everyone gets some kind of healthcare. I guess it’s too much to ask that we care more about people than money. I think people easily forgot that their insurance is most likely still better than what it is for those receiving government healthcare. 

I could go on endlessly about every infuriating aspect of this callous bill, but I’d like to move on to something that everyone can care about since that’s the only time some people will be angered: when it actually seems unfair to them. So, I present to you the pre-existing conditions part of Trump’s bill. 

Ive read multiple different articles and seen a copious amount of pictures and lists and so on, and what I’ve gathered is that the AHCA still “favors” the requirement set by the ACA regarding pre-existing conditions: insurers cannot deny benefits to those with pre-existing conditions. However, with the AHCA, insurers sure can drive up the prices and decrease the amount of coverage for those of us unfortunate enough to have contracted or been born with a disease/disorder. With that, states will be allowed waivers that will then allow insurers to sell plans that exclude benefits to those with pre-existing conditions. 

In a nutshell, the Trump”care” act does not guarantee affordable care or any health insurance at all to those of us with certain diseases, disorders, or conditions. No matter your political affiliation, you’re susceptible to ailments. Thus, everyone is impacted by this. 

List of pre-existing conditions that could cause premium spikes or may not be covered:

  • Acne
  • Asthma
  • Cancer
  • Pregnancy
  • Menstral irregularities
  • Transsexuality
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Depression
  • AIDS
  • Hepatitis
  • Anemia
  • Muscular Distrophy
  • Anxiety
  • Alzheimer’s
  • Diabetes
  • Obesity
  • Organ transplants
  • Macular degeneration 
  • Schizophrenia
  • Sleep apnea
  • Sex reassignment
  • Cystic Fibrosis
  • Alcolholism/Drug addiction
  • Sickle Cell Anemia
  • Tuberculosis

And the list goes on. In case you think I’m blowing smoke uo your ass, here are links to other lists and more information:

Here is a link to Trump’s actual site explaining and reiterating over and over that Republicans aren’t against supporting those with medical conditions. The link also includes that states will have the ability to seek waivers allowing insurers to deny benefits and raise premiums. The writers of the page express again that Republicans don’t wish to eliminate benefits to those with conditions, they merely explain why companies began denying and up-charging in the first place. It’s up to you to decide whether or not this explaination is excusing or justifying the unfairness.

Let’s get into this unfairness, shall we? 

  1. Since I’ve hilariously been called “sexist against men”, let’s start off with women. To be charged extra or denied coverage due to menstral irregularities and pregnancy is simply to be punished for being a female. Would you like to know some causes of irregularities in periods? Adolescence, exercise, diet, stress, family history, medications, etc. Also, PREGNANCY?! Punishment for procreating, premarital sex, or maybe just a means to solve overpopulation? Yeah, those statements might seem ridiculous, but I promise you they’re on par with the ridiculousness of insurers considering pregnancy. Also, sorry gentlemen, but this matters for you as well if you’re going to be marrying a female and/or having a child with one. And you better hope that you have a boy if you do have a child because that girl would possibly have menstral irregularities some day! 
  2. The act seems punitive to our LGBT community as well. Like they need more inequalities. Correct me if I’m wrong, but transsexuality is in no way as expensive a “condition” as something like cancer. To me, this is not a pre-existing medical condition! Sex reassignment could be considered if a person is receiving procedures and medications, but it, along with transsexuality, seem to be included simply to allow for discrimination. With this, AIDS is so often linked to homosexuality, so it’s no surprise that it’s included on the lists. 
  3. Mental illness. No surprise there either, as these people are so often viewed as “weak-minded”. Depression and anxiety are  not widely understood as the life-altering disorders that they are but as made-up conditions for people who can’t “deal with reality”, “shake off sadness”, “get over nervousness”, or “deal like everyone else”. Also, the mindset of “why should insurers have to help pay for the “psychos” with bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, psychotic disorders, and more?” runs rampant in society. It’s so easy to disregard that mental illnesses often appear in people due to genetics and trauma. So yeah, let’s punish people with horrible healthcare for their conditions that were caused by abuse, rape, endangerment, neglect, and injury! 
  4. Cancer, cystic fibrosis, and organ transplants. This one will really rile people up because, unlike mental illnesses, they’re lucid. People can see the damage these diseases are doing to their sufferers, so they’re actually considered real and important like all severe diseases/disorders should be. So how could something as horrible as cancer make insurers turn their noses up? Well, these diseases are expensive, they have higher death rates, and  little to no cure. So somehow, this makes the money aspect more important than human life. Organ transplants are rare, difficult and extremely costly. Insurers know that someone who needed one in the past could really cost them a lot of money just like cancer patients can. 
  5. Obesity, addiction, and diabetes. Again, this is putative. Often, these conditions are viewed as self-caused, so of course they’re going to be considered as burdens in the healthcare world. We love to blame people for their own issues instead of trying to understand them, so it’s easy to justify that people should have to pay more if they can’t stop eating or abusing substances. 
  6. Sickle cell anemia and tuberculosis. These are just more examples of structured discrimination as Sickle Cell Anemia is present mostly in non-white people and TB kills mostly Natuve Americans. 

To paint a decent picture, I’m going to make this personal and explain how this could negatively affect me and others like me. I am visually impaired and diagnosed with both ADD and Major Depression. To clarify, I will be stating facts, not fishing for sympathy and pity. I am not pitying myself, I am simply pointing out my reality and how it differs from those that do not have the disorders I have. 

My visual impairment affects only 25-34,000 US citizens, causes legal blindness, and has no cure or treatment. Yes, that includes glasses and contacts. As you can imagine-kind of, our lives are pretty different than your full-sighted person’s. Our lives are also very different than the lives of fully-blind people because we walk a very misunderstood line between sighted and not. My disease is much more frequently used as joke material than it is understood; it’s not easy to comprehend a disability that is physically undetectable,e. For me, life includes: inability to see computer screens, menus, street signs, physical books, newspapers, important forms and documents, magazines, white boards and smart boards at school, people at a distanc, my own toenails, my weight on a scale, instructions on food, products, etc.; inability to participate in most sports, card games, ping pong, frisbee throwing, bike riding, art,  scuba diving, and so on; inability to be a server, pilot, doctor, surgeon, nurse, engineer, clerk, police officer, military solider, firefighter…you get the point. Only you don’t. Because I’m still slapped in the face all the time by yet another thing I’m unable to do. In order to do things that are simple to most, I have to jump hurdles and test different forms of assistance. 

Simply figuring out how to makes things even doable-not easy, is a constant struggle. Getting a job often seems impossible because, not only is it difficult to find a job that I could do, it is no secret to me that employers would prefer fully able employees. Truly, it’s hard to even know my rights as a disabled person, so imagine the difficulties I have when they’re violated. Yes, I’ve been bullied brutally. Yes, I feel misunderstood at times and insanely alone other times. Yes, I sometimes feel worthless and less human. I hate depending on everyone. I feel like a burden. I feel like people look down on me, view me as pathetic. Micro-aggressions are very real and I face them daily. My life would be a constant humiliation if I let it be and finally, yes, my disability was a major contributor to my depression. Do I always experience those things? Of course not, but a lifetime of of those on-and-off feelings and experiences takess it’s toll. It does for everyone with any kind of disorder that makes their life more difficult. 

My vision is my cancer, my missing limb, my seemingly fatal condition. An abundance of people, especially those with Trump’s pre-existing conditions , have their own cancer. Their condition has the ability to ruin their lives, whether it is considered significant or not by others. Some might say it’s absolutely ridiculous to compare a vision impairment or a mental illness to cancer, but if you truly attempt to understand, you’ll see that “simple” conditions can lead to major ones and can take your life from you or cause you to take your own. 

People who can’t easily get a job are never going to have an equal opportunity to get superb insurance, nor are they going to make enough money to afford a life with no insurance or higher prices! People with fatal diseases cannot work to earn money to pay for their expenses or support their families.