Sadly, in the aftermath of some horrible mass murders, Sandy Hook, Virginia Tech, Columbine, Washington Navy Yard, and the movie theater in Aurora, Colorado, we learned that the assailants were or had been receiving some sort of mental health treatments-- medications or counseling. Sadly, they were not enough to stop these tragedies from happening. In some of these cases, the access to care had been limited or even denied because of insurance policy limitations.
In the aftermath there were public cries for gun control. But 2nd amendment rights advocates and more powerfully the NRA successfully placed the blame on these assailants mental disorders. They claim the problem isn't gun control. It's that there's a deficiency in providing mental illness care.
Well, in a movement to address that situation, the Obama administration, as part of their overall health care initiatives and the Sandy Hook massacre have now produced President Obama's 23rd executive order. It's now official: Health insurance companies must cover mental illness and substance abuse just as they cover physical diseases.
The administration had pledged to issue a final mental health parity rule as part of an effort to reduce gun violence. Officials said they have now completed or made significant progress on 23 executive actions that were part of a plan announced in response to the school massacre in Newtown, Conn., last December.
"For way too long, the health care system has openly discriminated against Americans with behavioral health problems," Sebelius said in a telephone conference call with reporters. "We are finally closing these gaps in coverage."
What's the significance of this executive order? Quite simply, in the past, medical health policies (which included limited emotional,psychiatric, drug and sex counseling) had different payment schedules when it came to non-mental health issues. There were tremendous policy limitations to the number of visits per year as well as significantly increased deductibles -- the patient's co-payment for each allowed visit. Oftentimes that priced a visit beyond the means of a patient.
Basically you could see a doctor as many times as you needed for say, kidney stones, liver disease, heart and high blood pressure issues. But if you had anxiety, phobias, psychotic episodes, those were on a different and far more limited schedule. That's now all in the past. Now if you are sick, physically or mentally, you can get the care you need without the fear of using up your visits.
Will this cut down on tragedies like those listed above? Possibly. Until we get guns out of unqualified people's hands we're never going to be without reckless, wanton shootings. But it's about time that drug users and the mentally/emotionally challenged get the same treatment as someone with cancer or pneumonia.
The bottom line, is the Presidents order AND the Affordable Care Act extend the parity protections for those participating in individual and small group health insurance plans.
The Republicans and gun zealots were blaming the lack of care for the mentally unstable. Hopefully now they'll applaud Obama's actions to provide these people care. If not, when the next gun massacre happens, the public may just revisit sane gun control measures and weapon's registration.
Oh those Taliban rebels. They've really got their sh** together. They're not like our domestic terrorists, the Tea Party. In Pakistan, when they have a leadership position to fill, they don't waste time. When they lose a commander, they've got a better one to step right into his burqa. I hope our Taliban work as quickly in the Commonwealth to replace "the Cooch." We wouldn't want to see the south regions of Virginia to go too long without an extremist to look up to.
The former head of the Pakistani Taliban, Hakimullah Mehsud, was killed by a U.S. drone strike on Friday just as he was entering his compound in a village in North Waziristan. Even though Mehsud was responsible for the deaths of thousands of Pakistani civilians and security forces, his death outraged Pakistani officials, who accused the U.S. of sabotaging the government's attempt to strike a peace deal with the militants.
Don't be harsh with the Paki's mourning the loss of a mass murder. Lord knows thousands show up in support of our mass murders, people like Rick 'the executioner' Perry and Wayne 'I can put a gun in your hands' LaPierre. They've directly or indirectly killed many.
The new leader, Fazlullah [one name, like Cher or Elvis], has served as the Pakistani Taliban's leader in the northwest Swat Valley but is believed to be hiding in neighboring Afghanistan.
He rose to prominence through radio broadcasts demanding the imposition of a harsh brand of Islam, earning him the nickname "Mullah Radio."
A couple of things come to mind in these paragraphs. First, his gerrymandered district is called Swat Valley. How appropriate for a man who uses sniper fire to take down innocent farmers, women and children.
Secondly he's going to be a modern day leader. He's going to telecommute. He rapes and pillages in his native Pakistan while hiding in Afghanistan. Some guys have all the luck. They can destroy innocent lives without ever having to leave their man cave.
And finally, this guy is issuing his orders over the radio? So he's kind of a Disc Jockey of Death. When he plays the hits, he means the hits -- killings and assassinations. Oh, that Mullah Radio. I wonder if he does a Sunday countdown show like Kasey Kasem. Maybe if Mullah Radio does, he calls his show, "Shooting Down The Oldies."
Now the choice of Fazlullah might seem odd or unusual to you. He, like Ted Cruz rose from obscurity to reek harm and pain on women and children. For Rafael Cruz, it was his ascendancy to the Senate and his attack on Obamacare. For Fazlullah, the Pakistani Taliban soldier is the one who planned the attack on teenage activist Malala Yousafzai. Yes, Malala, that young 15 year old girl who was a finalist for this years Nobel Peace Prize. Her crime, as we all know that was worthy of ordering her shot. How dare she incite young girls to go to school and become educated. If that's not a justifiable capital offense, I can't imagine what is. Way to go Faz.
With those kind of bona fides, it's no wonder that:
The shura chose Fazlullah as the new leader unanimously, Torashipa said.
Some Mehsud commanders were unhappy with the decision but eventually agreed under pressure from some of the group's senior militants, said the intelligence official, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to journalists.
Now if you need help with understanding what's between the lines above, the shura is the ruling committee and unanimously means at gunpoint. Now the commanders that were unhappy are no longer feeling that way. They're no longer feeling at all. They've been publicly stoned to death. This news also comes from the Taliban press official who isn't really authorized to talk to journalists.
Sadly he's not giving out much news anymore as Faz had his tongue ripped out for his previous news release. I'm sure details will be shared with all of us Sunday as Master Faz and his AK-47's spin "Shootin' Down The Oldies."
Last weekend I posted a story about a tragic shooting of a 13 year old boy who was carrying a toy rifle that looked like a real weapon. It was called Was This Stop And Frisk Or Stop And Shoot.
My problem was in the official timing of the event. After hanging up with dispatch telling them they were going to investigate a possible armed male, a mere ten seconds later the cops called back in. In that short time two cops got out of their vehicle, called out for the 13 year old who had his back to them to drop the weapon, the boy supposedly didn't respond immediately and they called out to him again, then he turned, one of them shot the boy 8 times and they checked on the fallen lad and then got back to dispatch -- ALL IN TEN SECONDS.
Well, this story takes on a bit more curiosity. According to Reuters
SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - A sheriff's deputy who shot and killed a 13-year-old California boy carrying what turned out to be a plastic replica assault rifle is a firearms expert who has trained officers for nearly two decades, authorities said on Monday.
Deputy Erick Gelhaus, 48, fired eight shots at Andy Lopez Cruz on Tuesday, as the popular eighth-grader was walking near his home in the wine-country suburb of Santa Rosa carrying an imitation AK-47 he planned to return to a friend, relatives and officials said.
Moment of perspective here: of the two cops involved in the shooting, one was a rookie, the other a seasoned vet who not only had years of experience, but he's the one responsible for teaching other cops, like the rookie, how to use reasonable force. One cop, the training officer fired 8 times, hitting the child 7. The other officer didn't fire a single shot. Did someone here have an itchy trigger finger? If I lived in Santa Rosa California, I wouldn't want that kind of shoot first, ask questions later rogue out on the streets, let alone teaching other officers how to handle a situation.
And how could all of this happen within 10 seconds? Did they fake this shooting? Had they already killed the child and then tried to cover it up. Just think about how short a time this is to do everything that supposedly went down. Does this raise your eyebrows too?
Both cops are on administrative leave, but maybe psychological medical discharge for the senior officer might be more appropriate. You shouldn't get second chances on the street armed with deadly weapons when you kill innocent kids.
Early reports from the tragic shooting in a Sparks, Nevada middle school.
A 13-year-old witness told the Reno Gazette-Journal that he saw a boy in a Sparks Middle School uniform shoot a teacher.
The witness, Kyle Nucum, (see video below) said that he heard a "pop" when he was outside of the school, and that a teacher came to investigate. When they approached the shooter, the boy shot the teacher.
Two people are dead and two boys are in critical condition after a shooter opened fire at Sparks Middle School in northern Nevada this morning, according to police.
More to follow.
Are we still waiting to consider gun regulations?
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Kuwaiti Citizen Detained at Guantanamo since 2002
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