Gun Control – Las Vegas

I don’t think I have ever spoken about gun control on this blog. But the tragic news today has made me think. 

Firstly, my thoughts and condolences are with the families and friends who have lost loved ones in this horrendous tragedy. It’s appalling to think that so many people lost their lives in such a way that is easily preventable.

This wasn’t a natural disaster like a hurricane or an earthquake. Something that couldn’t be avoided or stopped. This was a deranged terrorist (and rightly named) who brought carnage, death and suffering on an unimaginable scale.

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Yet I am still hearing that people in America will not move on the idea that there should be stricter gun laws in the country. I have heard commentators repeating their mantra that they should be allowed to access weapons as it’s this is their right.

All I can say is that thank goodness I live in the UK and not USA. It is almost laughable that a progressive country like the USA is allowing its citizens to carry out mass-murders without sensibly addressing the issue.

When the Dunblane massacre occurred in 1996 stricter laws in the UK were brought in and I believe made the country a safer place. I had to reassure my class at the time as they were frightened that a gunman could do the same in the school. They were genuinely worried.

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If ISIS had carried out this attack, USA would have reacted. If North Korea had done the same they would have bombed their country. The utter madness and insanity in this that America cannot and will not police itself. Believing their second amendment right outweighs the rights of those who tragically lost their lives.

The USA has collective denial. Some of those people who were affected by the Sandy Hook tragedy have campaigned for tighter gun laws. This was reflected in Barack Obama’s attempt and failure to change the country’s law regarding guns.

Everyone can own and drive a car with a license that’s attained by certain standards. These standards are legally required drive on UK roads. There are yearly checks made on a vehicles roadworthiness. Billions of pounds is spent implementing safety measures in vehicles so people are less likely to be injured or killed as a result of an accident. Yet America is not prepared to do so on guns which are solely designed to insure or kill. If you don’t know that a definition of madness is, this is it.

 

impatient

Oh. I like that word. It describes a lot of people and a lot of situations. We want things now. A generation has grown up that has had access to the internet. No longer do we have to wait a week or two for something to be delivered to our down we can purchase something and have it delivered the next day, the next hour or (depending on our broadband) instantaneously.

I have had a bad cold over the past week and I wish it was gone. I am still mourning for the loss of my mother and I wish that was gone. I am wanting a new job and I wish I started tomorrow. But all of things I have mentioned take time to resolve.

All this combined with super fast communication has left people stressed worried and sometimes mentally ill. It has been reported that girls in Britain are more likely to be worried and stressed more than other similar developed countries.

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Can you put down your phone for more than thirty minutes? (apart from when you are sleeping) I know I am addicted to social media. It’s FOMO syndrome. The fear of missing out. I woke this morning worried as my phone was set to silent, thinking that I might have missed an important phone call. I hadn’t.

So I will try to be a little more patience. Stop beating myself up about things I cannot change. And perhaps leave the phone on silent a little more often.

London again

Been away. Yep. Another time away for Philip. This time I am hoping when I come home I am not ill again. Just thought it was an ideal time to get a break from taking a break. This time I was a lot more relaxed and able to enjoy the sites and sounds of London.

London is crazy. The people are crazy. Every day I hear car horns blaring and a constant stream of emergency vehicles sirens screaming down past the hotel at all times day and night.

I was able to have a quieter moment in Green Park on Saturday afternoon as the weather had turned from nice to the Mediterranean. Coming from the northeast and unable to feel the cold it was a little unbearable at times especially travelling on the tube at temperatures that would have rivalled my oven at home. Plenty of water and patience.

I decided to have a less “touristy” visit and take in some of the bookshops that London has. It was a great time although my suitcase now looks like I have done a Hatton Garden on a local library.

The good thing as well is I don’t have to justify these purchases to anyone when I return. Why have you bought all those books? My mother would have asked.

It was a time of reflection given the horrible terrorist attacks on Westminster Bridge. Seeing all those flowers and dedications somehow made something I just saw on the news very very real. It was difficult not to shed tears for those innocent people who had been caught up in it and those left behind asking the question why.

I did make an important journey to Marchmont Street to the home that Kenneth Williams grew up in. It was an important pilgrimage. I cried uncontrollably for a while when the reality hit that I was in a place where he frequented. It was a place of heartache and sometimes laughter for him. I was moved by the fact that he was honoured with a plaque in 2009 commemorating the place.

I did stop by Downing Street where there was a Stop the War protest of Trump’s bombing of Syria. I made conversation with a lady as I wanted to get their point of view on the matter. Her simple message was forgotten all the complications and points of view and see the violence for violence as not the solution. That’s a standpoint to start from. I saw her simple view as intriguing as well as frustrating. What is the solution?

Time to come home after a great few days away. I am looking forward to the next chapter in my life. Looking for work and moving on from the past few years.

Lottery dreams

Everyone has considered once in their life time what they would do if they were to win the lottery. I have heard of lots of plans and ideas. Lots of people wanting to invest or drive off into the sunset.

I have always wanted to buy an old vicarage in Northumberland and have a flat in London. I think that would be the first two things I would want to buy. I certainly wouldn’t be buying expensive cars. They are distasteful and vulgar. I know of a certain ex-friend who would drive around London every now and again in a very expensive hired car for the day just to show off to people. If this isn’t a sign someone is a nobhead I don’t know what is.

I have read that most people say that winning a large amount of money hasn’t brought them happiness or it has been a burden to them as they get so many begging letters. I could only tell a select few an then remain anonymous. The vultures would be circling overhead waiting for the perfect moment to strike claiming to be your best friend.

If you weren’t happy for various reasons in the first place then winning a lot of money might not heal or provide some sort of comfort for the things we are dealing with in life. It might buy you the best therapist or allow you to have plastic surgery to change your appearance.

We all now and again need to look deeper into ourselves to what is making us unhappy and deal with it. I had to have three months of therapy in 2012 and it identified the source of my depression. Something I had had been looking for for years.

Throwing the priceless diamond back was the best thing she ever did in Titanic. That was the part of her life she knew was over and she had closure. That’s what I am looking for now. Something that will say right. Lets do this get to the next bit and move on.

The gift of love, life, true friends and acceptance is a priceless thing. It’s only when we discover these and know that they are more important than millions will we ever be a good person and truly happy.

Monday

Cyber Monday, Black Friday, Pink Wednesday and Green Sunday. What is going on in the world? Companies desperate to get us to part with our money or credit even in the run up to the biggest shopping time of the year Christmas.

My good friend Gregory and I only ever once stood in a queue in the cold to buy the new iPhone 4s. Now things have changed you can have then delivered to the comfort of your own home and not have to wait in long cold queues.

I sat at 11pm last night and did some Christmas shopping in the comfort of my living room. But has the time for going out to the shops in decline? I would always thought as much when online shopping really kicked off. I thought there would be less people on the streets things would be lovely quiet but how wrong I was on Saturday afternoon at a local out of town retail park. I even waited until 4pm thinking it would be really quiet. Not at all. Still obnoxious people and screaming children.

We are encouraged each year to spend and people do go out just for the sake of saying that they did buy something. Regardless if they actually really wanted a certain item in the first place.

Some people need to take a serious look at their lives. Finding the the difference between our wants and needs has been blurred for decades.

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Still grumpy

Gari Wellingham

UK-based musical theatre geek previously living with a brain tumour!