Jun 11

An angry mom takes aim at the NRA

Shannon Watts is my hero. 

As you’ll read in this riveting account of one week in her life, Shannon is putting everything on the line (including her life) to mobilize moms to stop gun violence. In fact, she has already succeeded in helping to pass gun safety legislation in 20 states.
Shannon is a Type-A mom with a cause. She’s authored a book called “Fight Like a Mother” and founded a non-profit called Moms Demand Action that has more followers than the NRA.

Watts began her one-woman crusade in the immediate aftermath of the Sandy Hook mass school shooting in 2012.

Since then, she has been the Energizer Bunny of the anti-gun violence crusade (Note: Moms Demand Action isn’t anti-gun. It’s anti-gun violence).

Make no mistake that Shannon Watts knows she is putting her life at risk by taking on the more extreme elements of the NRA.

In fact, if you read her weekly diary, you’ll see that when she arrived in Rhode Island to participate in an advocacy day with Governor Gina Riamondo, Shannon was met at the gate by two security guards. As Watts noted, “Their job is to take me to the nearest hospital if anything should happen.”

Our country is a better, somewhat saner place thanks to a true take-no-prisoners, damn-the-torpedoes, full-speed-ahead hero like Shannon Watts. And it proves that one person can indeed make a difference.

I encourage moms (and dads) everywhere to join Ms. Watts in her crusade. The life you save may be your own child’s.

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Jun 05

Still think global climate change is a Chinese hoax? Ask Mount Everest climbers their POV

As someone who dabbles in high-altitude mountain climbing, I’ve been closely following the horrific events on Mount Everest in the past month.

While most news coverage has focused on the lax standards that have allowed hundreds of climbers to be caught above the death zone in complete gridlock (and many die as a result), I stumbled across an equally disturbing trend of late.

Thanks to global climate change, warmer temperatures and melting ice, scores of long-dead bodies are suddenly emerging from their ice tombs on Everest.

In fact, it’s now a routine occurrence for guides and climbers alike to spot human bones poking up from the ground, smooth and ice encrusted.

As one guide told the New York Times, “Snow is melting and bodies are surfacing. Finding bones has become the new normal for us.”

The plethora of long-gone, perfectly preserved climbing corpses has caused something of an ethical dilemma for the climbing community.

Traditionally, people who perished on Everest had been left on the mountain in the exact position in which they expired. (Think the perfectly preserved Roman corpses of Pompeii.)

Now, though, with so many previously buried bodies popping up from the melting ice, the climbing community is faced with a conundrum: Do they leave hundreds and hundreds of corpses on the fabled mountain or ship the remains back to the victims’ families?

All of which brings us back to global climate change.

According to the New York Times, the snowline on Everest is higher than it was just a few years ago. Areas once coated in dense ice are now exposed. Climbers are trading ice aces for rock piton spikes that are hammered into cracks on the mountain’s walls. Trust me when I say that is absolutely mind boggling.

The Nepalese government already has its hands full with far too many inexperienced climbers attempting to summit the world’s tallest peak. Now they have to figure out what to do with the zombie-like remains of previously buried climbers.

For the Climate Denier in Chief, I’d say it’s high time to schedule a State Visit to Mount Everest. Assuming he can make it at least to base camp (which shouldn’t be a problem, given his self-proclaimed physical prowess and fitness), I think the president would get a whole new point of view, literally and otherwise, on global climate change. Let’s hope seeing is believing for Trump. Otherwise, melting ice won’t be the only condition that yields human bodies.

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