- Quo Vadis, Aida?: This harrowing tale of one woman’s choice to save her family or save as many people as she can during the Bosnian War is as powerful as a film can get.
- Mass: Two sets of parents meet after one of their sons has killed the other in a school shooting to figure what happened. Along the way, they are forced to answer questions that are painful and difficult.
- Spencer: This fictional take on Princess Diana (Kristen Stewart) and what might have occured during Christmas in the early 1990’s is a unique take on the myth of the late royal.
- Belfast: A young boy is growing up during the Troubles in Northern Ireland in the late 1960’s. As he starts to transition from a child to a young adult, he begins to realize that nothing is ever a simple as it seems to be.
- Black Widow: After ten years, Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) finally gets the movie she should have gotten. Trying to atone for her past while living in the present, she must face reality and make up for mistakes.
- Framing Britney Spears: This Hulu documentary took viewers in the life and career of Britney Spears and how it has changed since her father took control over both.
- West Side Story: Steven Spielberg’s adapation of this beloved musical takes it into the 21st century while retaing its message about prejudice and lack of opportunity.
- The Eyes of Tammy Faye: Jessica Chastain not only brings Tammy Faye Bakker back to life, she reveals the real person behind the punchline.
- Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings: This latest addition to the MCU is more than just the first all Asian cast. It is the story of a complicated father/son relationship and a young man who cannot run from his fate.
- Moxie: A shy teenage girl stands up to the sexist bullshit at school and empowers her fellow female students in the process.
Tag Archives: gun control
The game of politics can often be ground down to the game of top that.
The proposed bill, according to a press release from Newsom, would allow Californians to sue “anyone who manufactures, distributes, or sells an assault weapon or ghost gun kit or parts” for damages — the same injunction-skirting mechanism Texas has used to ban all abortions after six weeks, which has so far been permitted by the Supreme Court.
The lawmakers who have created and enacted these draconian pieces of legislation knew exactly what they were doing. They knew that if their bills were written in a certain way, it would be impossible for the Supreme Court (or any court) to strike it down.
Bravo to Governor Newsom. At least someone is thinking rationally.
December 14th, 2011, was a day that broke America’s heart.
Twenty-six people, most of them six and seven-year-old children, were murdered. They were killed because someone had a gun who shouldn’t have had a gun.
I remember Columbine like it was yesterday. I was in high school then, the kids who died were around my age. They at least had the opportunity to see some of the world and experience a little of what life could offered them. The children who died 9 years ago today were just a few years out of diapers. Had they lived, these beautiful and innocent souls would now be teenagers themselves.
What kills me is that even today, after too many young Americans have lost their lives for no reason, that some in the halls of power refuse to take simple steps to protect our future. They are more concerned with saving their own behinds.
May the memories of those precious lives forever be a blessing. Z”L.
Another week, another school shooting in America.
This firearm was given to him by his parents as an early Christmas present less than a week before the massacre. His parents have been charged with four counts of homicide involuntary manslaughter. As of yesterday afternoon, they were absent from their court appearance.
Ryan Busse, a former executive from a major gun company, published his memoir recently. Introduced to weapons as a young man by his parents, he received a message very early on how dangerous they could be.
Though forcing the shooter’s parents into court will not bring back the teenagers who were killed, I am hoping that it sets a moral and legal precedent. They could have made it absolutely clear that there were caveats and responsibilities attached to this gift. Just as a sixteen-year-old is limited to where they can drive once they get their license, the rules about where and when he could use it should have been crystal clear.
Instead, his parents gave him carte blanche to do as he wanted and as a result, the lives of four families will never be the same.
Maybe the memories of these innocent souls forever be a blessing.
Our childhood has a powerful effect on who we are when we reach adulthood. However, it does not mean that it is predetermined who we are and what we will accomplish.
Firearms have been part of Ryan Busse‘s life for as long as he could remember. Raised in a hunting family, it was natural that he would find a career in the gun industry. In his new memoir, Gunfight: My Battle Against the Industry that Radicalized America, he goes into great detail about his decades-long career and how it turned into one that was nearly unrecognizable. When he was starting out, the purpose of the job was to cater to their customers while ensuring that all safety precautions were followed. Over the years, there was a slow shift to a more radical perspective that politically veers away from democracy and towards another form of government that can only be described as concerning.
For anyone in this nation that is worried about the gun rights issue, this book is a must-read. Busse does not leave anything on the table, taking the reader on a ride that by the end should force us to ask questions. By no means is he calling for the 2nd Amendment to be abolished or the complete removal of all firearms from anyone who is not in the military or law enforcement. He is challenging those who are still in the industry to use common sense, which would solve many problems if it was used.
Do I recommend it? Yes.
From the outside, it appears that the NRA is one of the most powerful non-profit and lobbying intuitions in the United States. But, like any image, what we see may not always be the complete truth.
Misfire: Inside the Downfall of the NRA, by Tim Mak, was published earlier this month. Back in the day, the NRA was simply a grassroots organization whose goal was to encourage gun safety among its members. But over time, it morphed into a company that has had a stranglehold over the nation and any attempt by those in power to enact reasonable gun control laws. Led by Wayne LaPierre, the book reveals internal conflict, misuse of funds by those at the top, and the idea that they are above legal and legislative reproach.
The first break in the chain came right after the Sandy Hook massacre in 2012. Instead of working with the powers that be, LaPierre and the NRA doubled down on their perspective on gun rights and gun control. This opened the door to the revelations about how low it would sink to retain power. Even if that meant working with Russian spies and manipulating those at the top of the political food chain.
It has been said that the bigger they are, the harder they fall. To say that this fall is spectacular is an understatement. If we are to balance the rights of gun owners while protecting the lives of Americans, the NRA must be dismantled. Mak’s book, I believe, makes this clear. If we don’t, we will continue to be a fractured nation that is continually grieving over loved ones lost to gun violence.
Do I recommend it? Absolutely.
There is no doubt that the issue of gun control has created a crisis in this nation. Too many Americans, young and old, have been directly or indirectly affected by the unnecessary loss of life. More often than not, those who have survived have walked away with emotional and physical injuries that will last for the rest of their lives.
John Woodrow Cox‘s new book, Children Under Fire: An American Crisis, was published back in March. Following two young children, Cox talks openly and honestly about the long-lasting damage created by gun violence. The subjects of the book are two young children: Ava and Tyshaun. Ava watched her best friend die when a former student entered her school and started shooting. Tyshaun’s father, who he adored, was killed steps from where his son was receiving his education. He looks into the many attempts of reforming the gun control laws, interviews family members, academics, and politicians, and follows both children as they live with the after-effects of those tragic days.
If I could have hugged both Tyshaun and Ava and found a way to wipe their memories clean of the day their innocence died, I would have. When it comes to events of this kind, the subject of mental health and the perpetrator is inevitably brought up. But we don’t think about the survivors and the lasting consequences that they will be with them for the rest of their days. This book is long and hard to read. But it is one that I believe must be read by every adult and more importantly, even parent. We are failing our children if we do not stop this epidemic. It is possible to respect the 2nd amendment while keeping our kids safe. For foolish reasons, it is just not being done. Which pisses me off to no end.
Do I recommend it? Without a doubt, yes.
Change starts with a conversation. But first, we must be able to have that conversation, which is sometimes easier said than done.
The new CNN movie, The Price of Freedom, is about the battle for gun control and the measures both sides have taken to win the hearts and minds of both the public and those in the halls of power. It examines the power that the NRA holds over certain sectors in this country and its unchanging belief in the 2nd amendment. On the other side, family members of victims, survivors, and pro-gun control politicians plead for being reasonable and coming to the table to compromise.
I enjoyed this film. The filmmakers did a good job of letting both sides make their case and let the viewer decide where they land. They also provided a historical background to this topic, giving a greater grasp of the topic beyond the last few decades. Though it did not change my mind, it is a good start in bringing both sides and their beliefs to the table. Hopefully, it opens the door to a dialogue and perhaps understanding one another.
Do I recommend it? Yes.
This weekend, there were 15 people shot in 14 separate incidents in New York City. It is only Sunday morning. We still have another 12 hours or so before it is over.
- Where is Mayor de Blasio? What is he doing to keep us safe? Apparently nothing. Anyone living in the city knows that this is his last term in office. But that does not mean that he can be a limp noodle and rest on his laurels. He is still in charge and can affect change. Between sharp uptick of violent crimes and the attacks on the AAPI community, it makes me wonder if my sense of safety is nothing more than one incident away from being destroyed completely.
- Where are these weapons coming from? Most of them do not originate within NYC borders. Due to the fact that gun control laws vary from state to state, they can be transported from another part of the country. Which is another reason why a nationally recognized standard of vetting who can own a gun is vitally important.
I wish that I lived in a city and a country in which I would not turn on the news and be told that someone else in the hospital or in the morgue because they were killed by a gun. But until we have the balls to finally do something about it, this will continue to be a regular headline.
P.S. I hope this post does not deter any future visitors from spending time here, it is merely written out of frustration.