---G. K. Chesterton
I live with the curse of being impossibly pragmatic, and much as I try not to judge people, I sometimes have trouble understanding their decisions. For example, I do understand that seat-belts can be uncomfortable, but I have no understanding how parents choose to leave their children unbuckled. I understand that motorcycles can be fun, but come on dude...wear the helmet.
I am not a believer in heavy government control of adults. If an individual chooses to risk his/her life in unsafe practices, and it effects only him/her, then so be it. If, however, it puts you and me in danger, then the government needs to become involved. If all drunk drivers only have single car accidents then the choice to drink and drive is theirs. Since it is usually the sober victim that pays the price though, a jail sentence should be the penalty of drinking and driving, even if there are no accidents.
If your intent is to do something that can cause harm, then your act is criminal. I never understood being rewarded for being a bad shot. If you shoot and kill someone, you can go to prison for life, but if you shoot at that same person and miss, it is attempted murder with a much shorter sentence. As far as I am concerned, once you take that shot, you are a murderer...successful or not...and should be treated as such.
Of course there are extenuating circumstances. If a person is mentally ill in the eyes of the law, they can't make a rational decision to take a life, and therefore they can not be punished for the act. Mentally ill people need special treatment in most walks of life. Pragmatic me wonders then, why would our senate vote to nullify the part of the gun control bill that keeps severely mentally ill people (people with psychotic disorders who can't manage simple tasks on their own) from buying guns. It wasn't even all mentally ill people, it was focused on those who needed help for personal management. Yes, our house and our senate both decided that it is more important to appease the NRA than to protect the citizens that they were elected to protect. This is not about gun control...this is a common sense safety precaution.
I think the only way to solve the quagmire that is our political arena, is to elect our senators and representatives for one six year term only. Six years will give them enough time to accomplish their goals. No more worrying about re-election. No more dealing with lobbyists, because no need for their money. No more out of proportion retirement packages that they vote for themselves. Just six years of pure public service and back to their former careers. One and done!
Speaking of one and done, I must apologize because today's blog will contain only one review. Unfortunately, family matters continue to occupy my time this month, and reading has taken the dreaded back seat. Fortunately, the book that I did review, Never Say No To A Rock Star: In the Studio with Dylan, Sinatra, Jagger and More... by Glenn Berger was quite interesting. Mr. Berger was seventeen when he started working for A & R Recording Studio, and his interactions with the musicians and top names in the industry make for a great peak into a world that most of us only fantasize about. The book is definitely on my gift list for the music lovers in my life.
As always, a complete review of this book follows this blog.