A NATION OF VIOLENCE: WHY ARE WE ADDICTED TO GUNS IN AMERICA

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“We love our guns.”


Throughout American history, we have this fascination with guns. But with all these guns comes the history of violence. Whether it’s some maniac shooting up his workplace or school, to gang warfare in inner city streets. We have this characteristic about ourselves that we cannot shake loose. Yesterday there was yet another shooting, this time on a United States Congressman. The man shot was Representative Steve Calise, hit in the hip with a bullet as he practiced with his team playing ¬†baseball. The man had a gripe with politicians, and decided to shoot one of our representatives in the government. So where did all of this start and how?

See, America is not this once peaceful nation and then out of nowhere we became violent. From conflicts with the first Europeans and Native Americans, to the brutality of the Transatlantic Slave Trade, and on to numerous wars and conflicts fought throughout history. Our country on paper is considered the freest place on Earth. A place where families for quite some time have decided to move here as a safe haven from their native land. But then you hear about the mass shootings and hate crimes throughout this nation and it scares everyone. Another trivia fact regarding America is this nation’s love for guns.

This country made the Guinness Book of World Records for most guns per capita for any nation not in war time. And not in war time is a really good observation for what is going on here in America. The last war on United States soil was the Civil War. Since then, we have fought wars overseas on automatic weapon, bullet, camouflagesomeone else’s land. Yet we carry so many guns that you would think we are at war with ourselves. And here we go again back to the gun debate. When the fore fathers of America drafted up the right to bare arms they didn’t foresee AR-15, AK47’s, and M16 assault rifles. Guns pumping out thousands of rounds in minutes. And if they did, it was meant for the United States armed forces. So why all of a sudden do we need so much fire power?

I know we believe in protecting our homes, but when I see high powered rifles, there is something else there. There are people with arsenals that can rival the law enforcement, and chances are, they’ll never use them. Or what about the availability of guns in the hands of young boys in inner city neighborhoods. The inner cities have turned into their own battle grounds where in some places the AK47 is the gun of choice. See, in the end, I don’t see this country changing. And with people becoming more and more infuriated with the economy, you’ll see more of these mass shootings. And mental illness, political differences, economic strife, and guns do not mix. As long as we don’t address these issues head on, we’ll continue to have problems.


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EPIEPRICE!! THE HIGH COST OF HEALTHCARE

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“Where do you draw the line between business of greed?”

Recently in the news, the high cost of the Epipen has caused quite the controversy. And for those of you who are unfamiliar with the Epipen it was is designed to inject epinephrine into the system. The shot’s purpose is used in the case of severe allergic reactions. It aids in blood flow, keeping muscles from becoming constricted, improves breathing, and¬† increases heart rates. The pharmaceutical company Mylan branded the pen for over $600. But the original amount that consumers were spending was $50 – $60 for a pack. So in response to the outcry from the public, the company stated it would roll out the generic version for $300.

Now, it sounds like they’re giving a deal, but it’s not. Especially considering the original amount was less than $100. Price hikes came a result of trying to remain competitive in the marketplace. But I ask the question; when does competition becomes pure greed. You mean in order for a company to compete, the prices needed to be raised from $50 to $600. There was also criticism over the CEO receiving, or better yet, giving herself a raise. And we’re not talking a few dollars or even a few hundred thousand dollars. She received a nearly $20 million payday, about $18 million up from her previous salary.

Now as a society, we’re always hearing about the government getting tough on insurance companies for their practices. But what about the pharmaceutical companies as well. If you don’t already know, not even a few years ago, another businessman purchased an AIDS vaccine. After purchasing the pills, the price was taken from $13.50 to $750 per pill. The move prompted the government to intervene. And this is why we have so much federal regulation in the United States as it pertains to the corporate world.

But at what point is it greed? How much money is enough or is there ever enough? While these multinational corporations generate revenues hand over fist, the average American suffers. Who can can afford to pay an increase in Epiepen shots even if the cost is down to $300. Still, I have been waiting to hear from the president, but still no answer. I wish that I could say it’s a particular administration, but it’s all of them. None of them will come out and attack what should be illegal business practices.

Charging the highest amount that the market is willing and able to afford, while shifting deadweight loss to the consumer sounds familiar. Oh yeah, it’s called a monopoly. Monopolies under the law are suppose to be prohibited, but we have other names for companies that fit under monopoly like categories such as Oligopolies. Which is few competitors in the marketplace who control nearly the entire market. The government says it makes it easier for them to regulate having the big four or the big five instead of the big ten or big twenty.

Whatever the case may be, I don’t much regulation. It seems as if the government’s regulations are no more than words on paper. Words that only are used to make people feel good, yet never enforced. In the end price increases are normal in business, but not by hundreds of percent. Prices that are so high it’s beyond obvious that the company raising the prices are getting over on the consumers.