How You Can Prevent School Shootings

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(photo by Tucker Good)

The Florida school shooting that killed 17 people was the 273rd attack in America since the Sandy Hook Elementary School attack in 2012.

In total, 430 people have been shot, most of them kids.

You can help prevent future shootings. How? By voting and sharing information with your friends on social media.

You are powerful. You can exercise your right to vote. You can vote against the lawmakers that have voted against gun control laws and vote in lawmakers that will vote for gun control laws. You can share your information with everyone you know.

If you are eighteen are older, you can register to vote. Google search: “How to register to vote in (your state)”

When you receive your ballot, another simple google search will tell you how the candidates will vote in regards to gun control. Google search: “Where does (candidate’s name) stand on gun control?”

Vote for a candidate that will stand up for gun control.

How did your lawmaker vote on gun control?

In 2016, our lawmakers had 4 chances to change gun control laws. Each time they failed to reach the 60 votes necessary to pass those laws. (From this article at Slate.com)

Here is how the vote tallies broke down:

Dianne Feinstein’s Democratic amendment, that the Washington Post notes, would “let the attorney general deny firearms and explosive to any suspected terrorist.”

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John Cornyn‘s Republican amendment that would allow the government to delay the sale of a firearm to terror suspects “only if [the attorney general] could prove to a judge within three business days of the attempted sale there was probable cause to suspect the buyer of ties to terrorism,” according to the Post.

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Chris Murphy’s Democratic amendment that would “expand background checks for anyone trying to purchase a firearm at a gun show or online,” according to the Washington Post.

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Chuck Grassley‘s Republican amendment that increases funding for background checks but does not make them mandatory.

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Now get out there and change the world.

Further reading:

Here Are the Senators Who Just Voted Against Closing Gun-Purchase Loopholes
After Sandy Hook, More Than 400 People Have Been Shot in Over 200 School Shootings
What Explains U.S. Mass Shootings? International Comparisons Suggest an Answer

 

Horrible Blog Post Titles

seatbelt

How to Operate a Seat Belt

My Neighbor’s Garage Contents

Types of Traffic

The Disadvantages of Educated White Males

Floss Your Way to Perfection

Organize Your Light Bulbs!

10 Ways to Repress Anger

Eat Your Way to Emotional Fulfillment

Top 20 Toilet Bowl Cleaners

I’m into Vermin!

5 Signs You Have Trench Mouth

How to Crush Your Spouse in a Dishwasher Argument

Twee Tree Tweets

Accounting for Accountants

Leeches and the Joy They Bring

Passive Aggressive Infant Training

Types of Traffic

Cookies for Kid Cannibals

Cloud Storage Haikus

(Please add your titles in the comment section!)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ask H.P. Lovecraft!

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Guest Blogger: H.P Lovecraft

Advice from H.P.

Dear H. P. Lovecraft,

How can I get Donald Trump out of my mind? He seems to be everywhere and I’m totally bummed out all the time. I think I’m going to have PTSD.

Signed,

Orange Everywhere

Dearest Orange,

Speak not the name of this ill-formed, belligerent beast from the foul Netherlands of Hades. He is the scourge of the Earth, the demon whose lies invade the mind and attack the truth. For he is Cthulu, poorly reborn in the form of a human.

Take this advice: Acquire the purest sand and have it blessed by a holy person. Spread the sand in an unbroken line around your sacred home. Speak an incantation besmirching this malodorous foe and command the deceitful demon to never cross the sacred line. Afterwards you must proclaim your home to be ever free of this foul ghoul.

The name of this hideous troll must not be uttered within this sacred space. Remove any pictures or written word of the despicable hobgoblin. Blockade any portals, physical and mental, with which it could use to travel. Oranges, carrots, and persimmons must be removed and only eaten outside the circle lest their color alone drag you into the claustrophobic dungeons of despair. Your mind must become the moat around your castle, replete with vicious and loyal monsters at your bidding, strong enough to vanquish any thought that arises of this festering demon.

With these steps, your mind will become calm and with it, your home. Let this sacred space steel your soul against the deceitful ogre and prepare you each day to leave your home refreshed again, to fight anew this vile and putrid imp.

-H.P. Lovecraft

Kneeling at the Altar of the Word Count Gods

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Dear Lovely Laser Eyes,

I understand you’ve got gobbledygook in your brain. You’ve decided to cut the word count of your novel from 121,000 words to 70,000 words? You’re sick.

~Concerned

Dear Concerned,

It sounds like self-punishment, I know. But I think it might be self-love.

Whuuut?

Last week, I got some advice from an author with a lot more experience in publishing. I asked her for some help with my pitch package. She took one look at my word count and told me, “No agent will look at your YA book with a word count of 121,000.”

When I was writing my book, I knew the word counts of YA were hovering around 60-80,000 but I ignored those numbers. Now, after getting over two dozen rejections from agents with zero requests for partials or fulls, I’m ready to kneel at the altar of the word count gods.

My goal has always been to publish traditionally. If you want to publish traditionally, you have to play by the industry rules.

Wish me luck, writer friends. Hopefully I’ll return with my sanity.

 

Play These Songs on my Deathbed

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Seeing my mom decline has been one of the saddest experiences of my life. It has made me see that our system of dealing with old age is broken.

Should we be keeping people that have Alzheimer’s and dementia alive? I personally don’t want that for myself and I bet most people, if given the choice, wouldn’t either.

I’ve talked to several people in my generation that say, “yeah, I’m going to get a pill and take it when the time comes.” Suicide when the time is right.

95% of the time, that’s not how it goes down. Where did I hide that pill? I forget because Alzheimer’s crept up on me. Or, one minute you’re happy, you’re 85 and still loving life and then you have an event. Like a stroke. Your brain is affected and you can’t think for yourself anymore.

I’m going to die someday. That’s inescapable. So I want to be able to plan my death. I want to be able to go further than just have a “Do Not Resuscitate” order in my will. What if I get Alzheimer’s or dementia? I don’t want to put my family or myself through that. Planning how I die should be my right as a human being. To say that when I don’t remember who my loved ones are, put me to sleep! Have a ceremony for loved ones so they can say goodbye. Make is special. So they can recount the good times we’ve had and laugh and cry.

Play some Oscar Peterson,images

play some Madness, Madness-012

and of course, play “The Final Countdown”. europe-the-final-countdown

 

Querying Agents and Other Forms of Self-Torture

Dear Lovely Laser Eyes,

Where in the hell is your book that you finished, like last year?

-Confused

Dear Confused,

Holy crap, I hear you! Where IS my book? I’m trying to find an agent. What a pain in the ass!

I’m trying to publish traditionally. I want that roaring machine behind me! I need the Frankenstein jump start on getting my book out there. How long am I going to give it? Probably six more months.

If not, I’ll self-publish of course. In the meantime, I’m going to keep writing as much as I can.

My strategy so far has been to query 6-8 agents and judge the response. If there are no partial or full manuscript requests, then tweak the pitch package. I’m on my third round and so far, no love.

The thing is, I know the book is good. My beta readers have scored it on average at 8.5 out of 10.

So what’s the deal? I think it’s a tough sell for agents because it’s told in first person, multiple point of view’s. While I was working on it, I got inspired watching “The Wire” television series. I loved seeing the story from so many angles. It’s so comprehensive and fascinating. That’s what I’ve tried to do with my book by telling it through seven different characters.

I’m going to keep trying, tweaking my pitch package with the help of people I’ve met on Goodreads and my writer buddies. With fingers crossed, I hope to find an agent that will be psyched to represent me.

If any of you have advice, I’d love to hear it!