Inevitably, when the universal background check discussion comes up, the discussion of gun registries follows. Over at Slate, they say we don't have to worry about gun registries, since the Firearm Owners Protection Act of 1986 forbids it. Oh, gee, thanks Slate. That calms my nerves - an ACT. Kinda like the Defense Of Marriage Act (DOMA) - you know, the Act the Obama Administration no longer defends because it says DOMA is unconstitutional. Yep, I feel better already.
So why are people even concerned that universal background checks will lead to gun registries? And what's the big deal anyway?
Well, the broadest proposed universal background checks involve having to run NICS searches in private sales and transfers, which is currently not required. A lot of what is making its way out of committees to the floor exempts transfers, and some private sales. So, you have to ask: exactly how universal are these checks, and isn't this just smoke and mirrors? Yes. Truly universal background checks would mean every transfer or purchase of a firearm would need a NICS check. You might say "sounds good to me". Well, let me ask you: how would the government know if you're transferring a gun to your son or your cousin, selling it to a neighbor or co-worker, unless you told them?
It seems that we have a preconceived notion about what makes a person an activist. Activists are people who affect change, and working women, especially those in male dominated professions, are at the forefront. Smart Girl Politics member Monica Wells spent 14 years as a Probation Officer in the Juvenile Division of Harris County, Texas. Harris County includes Houston, which - as the fourth largest city in the country - has more than its fair share of criminal and gang activity, and is certainly in the big leagues when it comes to law enforcement.
Q: What made you decide to go into law enforcement?
A: Growing up my father was my hero and he was a Special Agent for the US Immigration Department, now ICE. During the early years of my childhood, I really didn't understand what my dad did for a living. I knew he had a shiny badge and carried a weapon, and that he was frequently gone on "details" and worked weird hours. When I was about 10 years old, I had a conversation with him about what I wanted to be when I grew up, telling him that I wanted to be a police officer but that girls couldn’t be police officers. He proved me wrong by taking me to the local police academy and introducing me to the first female cadet to go through their academy.
Yesterday, in an effort to teach a valuable lesson, Dove posted a three-minute youTube video of an experiment they conducted on how women see ourselves vs. how others see us.
A former forensic artist for the San Jose, CA police department was tasked with doing two sketches of each individual. Participants were asked, when they arrived, to spend some time getting to know one other participant, and then one by one they entered the room. They were hidden behind a curtain, so they had no idea what was going on, they were simply asked to describe themselves to the gentleman on the other side of the curtain. They were also asked to describe the other participant with whom they'd spent time.
The results were amazing. When the artist revealed the two sketches, the contrast was remarkable and is a stark reminder that we often fail to appreciate the God-given beauty that lies not just on the outside, but more importantly, within.
Yesterday was another day in America where you were either glued to your TV or turned it off in disgust. It was a day where we prayed for people to be safe, or in the comfort of God's arms; a day where, once again, we could all put ourselves in the shoes of those faced with terror and tragedy. Two bombs were set of at the finish line of the Boston Marathon - arguably one of the world's most high-profile running events. It also happens to be the day Patriot Day is celebrated (celebrating the opening battle of the American Revolution). Tweets and Facebook updates started immediately. And for me, like many others, it was the blurbs on these social media sites that got me to flip on the major news networks and open a tab for each one in my browser. And, of course, almost immediately, the blame started from the usual suspects. So much for cooler heads, waiting for the facts, not jumping to conclusions, or just being reasonable. In fact, if you want to speculate the identity of the perpetrator(s), we have a history you could use. But, it's not very politically correct or expedient. See, most of the attacks on that list involve some sort of Islamic extremism. Of course, the one incident left off that list (and the most successful incident, in terms of terror), was the shooting at Fort Hood. Don't ya know, that's workplace violence?
When the Kermit Gosnell trial wraps up in Philadelphia, the jurors will literally have his life in their hands. The abortionist behind the gruesome shop of horrors in West Philadelphia faces a mandatory minimum 20 years for a number of charges including eight counts of murder – but he may also be sentenced to death.
If I were on that jury pool, my primal impulse would be to sentence him to death by “snipping” – have the warden grab a pair of medical scissors and sever his spinal cord, just like he did to those innocent babies. But ultimately, I believe he shouldn’t be sentenced to death at all. I implore the court to spare Dr. Gosnell’s life. A couple reasons why:
First, millions of folks’ pro life stances are rooted in the belief that every life is sacred – even the life of someone who callously takes the lives of others. Kermit Gosnell is no exception.