Sunday, July 15, 2018

Sanford, Florida Police Department Lip Sync Battle

Sanford, FL Police Department joined the lip sync battle way back when it first began, even before it went viral.  The different departments challenged each other.  Here are their lip sync videos:

Alpha Unit -- Locomotion

Community Relations Unit -- A Thousand Miles

Charlie Squad -- Don't Stop Believing

They challenged Delta Squad, but I can't find the video.

Sanford Police Department -- Can't Stop the Feeling

Motors -- Born to be Wild

Crime Scene -- I Put a Spell on You

K-9 Unit -- Happy Together

Thursday, March 2, 2017

My Cruise/Vacation Tips

Many of these can be found in other posts, here are my favorites in no particular order:

Carnival uses sail & sign card for everything. It's a room key/charge card/disembark/boarding card all in one.  You can use a card holder lanyard either with pocket or they have a hole you can just clip your lanyard to it.  

We also got RFID credit card holders to take our cards/cash off the ship.  They easily fit in your pocket. 

Coffee usually sucks on cruise ships and some hotels.  If you really like good coffee bring your own and get a travel steeper

My room steward commented on how good my coffee smelled.  I left her my leftover coffee and my coffee steeper.
Don’t forget your travel mug.
I also bring mini cups with lids to carry the coffee from my room to the buffet. 

Bring lots of Ziploc bags in different sizes.  Quart, gallon, 2 gallon.  Can be used for ice, wet clothes, carrying your coffee to breakfast and the wet travel steeper back to the room.  Also, grab some fruit/snacks and take it with you.

The ship is metal, the walls and ceilings are metal, bring magnetic hooks.  I got these at Walmart and they were very helpful keeping my oxygen tubing off the floor preventing a tripping hazard.  Can also be used to hang clothes, towels, laundry bag etc.

I I bring extra hangers, the flat lightweight kind, because there aren’t usually enough, though this time there were plenty.  I think someone left them behind. You can get slim hanger clips for pants/skirts for the slim hangers. You can also just use the magnetic hangers that I mentioned above.

Extension cords and power strips are helpful.  You can usually get an extension cord from the ship, just ask your steward.  On some ships staterooms have only 1 plug.

 If you need a handle getting in/out of shower/tub, this is a good travel handle.  Never fell off the whole week on the ship and I even hung my mesh shampoo bag on it.  It’s small and lightweight enough to pack.

If you check your bag don’t forget to bring a carry on bag with your medicines, jewelry, bathing suits, extra clothes etc.  You may not get your checked bags until later.   You can then use this bag for the last night/morning since you have to put your checked bags out the night before.  On most cruise lines your empty suitcases fit under the bed.

When the restaurant boxes up stuff to take back to your room they usually put it on a plate with a cover.  This plate doesn’t fit in the mini fridge.  We used to bring a small collapsible cooler, but that didn’t work either for the plates.  We got this round collapsible cooler.  It collapses but it does take up quite a bit of room in the suitcase.  We were driving so it didn’t matter because we could have taken it out of the suitcase and carried it off if we need the room. One 2 gallon Ziploc filled halfway with ice kept everything cold.  

We got lightweight foldable backpacks.  These worked great.  

 Cruise luggage tags work great and protect the paper from getting wet or pulling off.  There are different ones for the different cruise lines.  We got these for Carnival.  They worked very well. 

Tipping.  Bring cash to tip your dining room server (if you have anytime dining like we did you can tip the individual groups accordingly)  and room stewards.  I don’t know about other cruise lines, but Carnival takes some of the money out of the tips.  Go to guest services and have dining and housekeeping taken off your list and then tip them with cash.  That way they will get the entire tip.  Leave Alternative Services on since this goes to all the people who take care of you on the lido deck.  Bar servers you can tip as you go but watch out as tips are usually included.  I also found out that Carnival has been cutting back on staff for the last year.  Many long time staff have quit. (No this has nothing to do with immigration, they’ve been cutting back well before Trump even started running).  Therefore the room stewards need to cut back on service depending on the steward’s load.  Our steward could clean the room either in morning or evening.  If you choose morning there was no turn down service.  Every time I cruise I notice they’ve cut back more and more.  However,  the staff is great, they bust their butts and they do it with a smile.  Keep an eye out, you’ll see they work very hard.  That’s why you want the entire tip (and maybe then some) to go to them. 

Speaking of dining, Carnival has 3 dining options.  Early dining at 6:00pm (5:30pm for Alaska cruises), Late dining at 8:15pm (7:45pm for Alaska cruises) or 'Your Time' open seating, between 5:45pm and 9:30pm (between 5:15pm and 9:00pm for Alaska cruises). The early and late dining you get the same table/wait staff every night.   We  do the ‘Your Time’ dining.  If you come early you might have to wait.  They use pagers now.  If you come at 8pm or later you don’t have to wait and you can ask to sit with the same wait team (though not necessarily same table) every night.  It’s very flexible and if you don’t like your dining staff you can pick someone else the next night.  Also, if you go later you get more individual attention because the dining room isn’t full.  Don’t forget, unless otherwise stated, you are not limited to only one appetizer, dinner or dessert. You usually can also get the dining room menus in advance if you ask at guest services/purser.  If you are traveling over a holiday, make specialty dinner reservations as soon as you book your cruise.  Even though we did, the steak house was sold out for our anniversary which coincides with Valentine’s day.

If the ship has multiple buffet stations on lido deck, the ones in the back are usually less crowded.

If you like bananas, eat them at the beginning of the cruise, they will be non-existent by the end.  They load them on in the home port so they are no good by the end of the cruise unless you grab a few and keep them in your mini-fridge.  They will turn black on the outside but the inside will still be good 5-7 days once ripe. 

We’ve now had 2 bad experiences with the Carnival Breeze “Cherry on Top” store.  The first cruise they didn’t deliver things as promised and then tried to say they delivered things they didn’t.  It was a hassle and my birthday cake came 2 days late because of all the back and forth trying to get it delivered.  This cruise they had the total for something Jerry picked up in the store and he signed for one amount and they added a tip for delivery (it wasn’t delivered) without telling him.  We had to go to guest services Saturday night and wait in a long line to get it taken care of and it still wasn’t taken care of as we were getting ready to get off the ship.  Once again we waited in a long line to get it take care of.  The guest services person got on the phone and waited until it was credited to our account and then gave us our final bill.  Long story short, watch your charges like a hawk. 

Carnival hub app.  It’s great.  There is room for improvement, but it’s great.  It has the entire schedule, ship map, photos, time schedules open/close.  There’s a chat feature we didn’t use, it costs $5 but we didn’t need it.  The photo feature will get even better as they convert the ships over to totally digital photos.  Right now only the Vista has it and the Breeze is next in April.  Right now the Breeze is only semi-digital.  There is face recognition and when  they take photos on the ship they connect some of the photos automatically by swiping your sign/sail card.  Some of them still have to enter your cabin number manually.

Speaking of photos, they use your passport photo as your id photo now.  I was appalled as my photo is horrendous and every time I went in/off ship or had photos taken there was my awful photo. 

Carnival says don’t bring towels they have for you to use, and yes they do.  However, their towels weigh a ton and 2 tons wet.  I bring lightweight towels I got at Walmart for about $5.  They also come in handy when you need to wrap breakable things up.

You can bring on 2 bottles of wine.  Depending on which port they may ask to see the wine.  I use wine skin bags to protect the wine.  They are disposable but I usually use them several times before I need to throw them away.  You can also use the bags to protect small breakable items on the way home.  Carnival has a $15 corkage fee if you want to drink it in the dining room.  On our last cruise we found a wine we liked.  On the ship it’s $36, at Total wine it’s usually 12.99.  I got it on sale for $10.39.  So even with the corkage fee I saved money. (Yes, they charge almost 3 times what you can get the wine for on land).  Mini fridge is good for wine.  You can only bring on one bottle per person.

Bring filter bottles and fill them on the lido deck.  You can also bring a travel cup or sports bottle and fill with juice/tea.  Carnival has Orange juice and a mixed juice in the morning and lemonade and tea all other times.  You can fill your bottles and they will fit in the mini fridge with your wine.

Depending on the port you may have to have your CPAP/oxygen concentrators check by K9 unit.  They never opened the CPAP machine bag, though I’m sure they are supposed to.  They do sell distilled water on the ship.  Gallon is around $3.49.

  Most ports let you on the ship just by showing your sign/sail card.  Some ports, like Cozumel, make you go through security, X-ray, metal detector etc.

If you are on Carnival and it a standard stateroom, faster to the fun is worth the price, unless you don’t mind waiting…  They sell out fast.

If you are in a cabin or hotel room that you need to put a card in to keep your lights on, you can use any card, it doesn’t have to be your room key card. 

Have fun.  If you have any other great tips, let me know and I’ll add them.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

2 Juveniles arrested in Sevier County Tennessee Fire, Investigation Ongoing

TN Fire news conference 12/7/16 3pm ET:

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation Director Mark Gwynand announced that 2 juveniles were arrested Wednesday morning in connection with the fires.  The Sevier County District 4th District Attorney General James Dunn said that because they are juveniles state law prevents them from releasing any information, including age and sex, on the 2 except that they are from TN but not Sevier County. There will be a detention hearing within 72 hours to determine if they are held with bond, without bond, or released pending trial. 

The investigation is still ongoing. Because they are juvenile and because the investigation is ongoing, Dunn would not give any other information except to say "everything is on the table" as far as charges and/or moving the case to adult court and responded "it's part of the investigation" to almost all questions, meaning they will not comment on any aspect of the investigation or about the suspects at this time.

Also in attendance was Great Smoky Mountains National Park Chief Ranger Steve Kloster.
Official Update for the Chimney Tops 2 and Cobbly Nob Fires for 2016-12-7
To date, there are 14 confirmed fatalities. Over 145 people sustained injuries. A total of 1753 structures have been damaged or destroyed. This number includes 1711 single family residences and 42 commercial properties.
Start Date: Nov 23 Size: 17,006 Containment: 64%
Start Date: Nov 28 Size: 819 Containment: 67%
To access Gatlinburg, it is important to follow check point protocols. There is only one check point access at East Parkway (Hwy. 321) at Glades Road and the Post Office. Be sure to bring valid forms of identification showing name and address of residence or business inside Gatlinburg. Officials will verify renters and lease holders, as needed. 
Closed Trails: Chimney Tops Trail, Road Prong Trail, Cove Mountain Trail, Gatlinburg Trail, Huskey Gap Trail, Sugarland Mountain Trail, Rough Creek Trail, Little River Trail, Cucumber Gap Trail, Jakes Creek Trail, Miry Ridge Trail, Goshen Prong Trail, Old Sugarlands Trail, Twin Creeks Trail, Bullhead 
Be vigilant while driving; emergency vehicles and personnel may be working in areas open to the public.

Incident Summary: The Chimney Tops 2 Fire was reported in Great Smoky Mountains National Park near Gatlinburg, TN on Wednesday, November 23, 2016 at approximately 5:20 pm. The wildfire began burning in a remote location (Chimney Tops) of the park in steep terrain with vertical cliffs and narrow rocky ridges making access to the wildfire area difficult for firefighting efforts. On Monday, November 28th, the exceptional drought conditions and extreme winds caused the wildfire to grow rapidly, causing numerous new wildfire starts from embers carried miles away and downed powerlines in and adjacent to Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The wildfire was determined to be human-caused and is currently under investigation.

Chimney Tops 2 fire did not increase in size yesterday and is estimated to be 17006 acres. Due to more accurate mapping, the Cobbly Nob fire is now estimated to be 819 acres, but there has been no actual growth in the fire size. Containment has increased to 64% on Chimney Tops 2 and is up to 67% on Cobbly Nob. Despite the rain, heat still exists within the fire perimeter. Smoke may be visible within the fire perimeter from time to time, and firefighters will continue to patrol and mop any hot spots that may be a threat to the containment lines or structures.
Today property owners, business owners, renters, and lease holders are being allowed to return to full-time occupancy beginning at 7:00 am through the East Parkway (Hwy. 321) entry point. A curfew will be in effect from 10:00 pm until 6:00 am both today and Thursday. Use caution when entering the burned area.

The City of Gatlinburg plans to reopen for business and to the general public on Friday, December 9 at 7:00 am. Major roadways are expected to be open, but some city roadways may remain closed to accommodate utility work.

Even though the fire is not 100% contained, the areas opening to the public have been deemed safe. The area will continue to be monitored and patrolled. Firefighters will continue to provide structure protection and will maintain a presence in these areas until the fire is 100% contained.

Though there is little or no active fire evident at this time, everyone should use caution when entering the burned area. Be prepared for other hazards that may be present on your property. These include, but are not limited to: hazards trees, footing, parking, collapse of structural material, and utilities. We will continue to mop up and patrol and provide for public and firefighter safety. For detailed information on safely returning to your property, please follow us on our Facebook, website, or call us (information above).

Chimney Tops 2
Cobbly Nob
Incident Resources: 18 hand crews, 35 engines, 3 helicopters, 1 dozers, 1 air attack, 593 total personnel

Weather: Low pressure continues tracking across the area as high pressure prepares to build into the area thru today. Rain showers yesterday resulted in 0.8 inches of rain in the fire area. The light intensity showers allowed much of the rain to soak into the soil instead of running off. High pressure will be over the region briefly today with a fast moving frontal boundary system that will cross the area tonight and Thursday morning. This system will allow much colder air into the fire area for Thursday night into Saturday.

Road and Trail Closure Status: The National Park is closed from the Gatlinburg Entrance to Smokemont near Oconaluftee (US 441, Newfound Gap) and Little River Road from Sugarlands Visitor Center to Townsend. The Gatlinburg By-Pass and Cliff Branch are also closed. The Spur between Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg is open from Pigeon Forge to the Gatlinburg Welcome Center. There is no access to Wiley Oakley or Westgate from the Spur.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Remembering Bella

(all these photos, and more, can be found on Rob's Instagram and Facebook pages.)
Here is a story of love and devotion between a terminally ill dog and the man, a marine veteran, who loved her and spent her last months taking her on the journey of a lifetime.

Here is the story of Rob and Bella.

Over a year ago, doctors gave Bella, diagnosed with terminal cancer, she had a leg amputated because of bone cancer and the cancer had spread to her lungs. She was given 3-6 months to live. Rob decided to take Bella with him on a trip to Chicago so he could spend as much time with her as to spend as much time with her as he could. It didn't stop there, next thing you know, they were an epic journey around the United States together.

As word spread, Rob and Bella became internet sensations. 

They were even featured by several news outlets.

Here's a story about them on CNN:
Man takes his dog, dying of cancer, on one last, epic road trip

and the Telegraph:
Man takes terminally ill dog on farewell cross-country road trip​

and even the today show
His dog was given months to live, so this man took her on a cross-country trip​

He gained thousands of followers on his instagram, facebook and twitter accounts.  People from around the world were following the journey of Rob and Bella.

Rob and Bella traveled the country

Thursday, October 27, 2016, Rob took Bella on a ride, not knowing it would be her last.

Video of Bella's last ride.  Click here

That night Bella's breathing became labored and, as Rob snuggled in next to Bella at the vet, he posted to his instagram followers that that the end was near.
Click here to read Rob's post
Sadly, Bella passed away Friday, October 28 with Rob by her side. Through the sheer force of Rob's love, Bella lived much longer than the vets thought.

On Friday, October 28, 2016 Rob posted this picture of Bella to his instagram/Facebook
Click here to see Rob's message
and wrote:

Goodbye my Love. Thank you for never abandoning me...never judging me...never giving up on me... Thank you...for Loving me with every beat of that beautiful heart. Now go, become one with in the wind, flow in the ocean, and give warmth to the hearts of all you've touched...for your Love is now eternal and immeasurable.
To my brother Mike, sister Charity and all my grandparents... give this girl some tummy rubs, would you? For all the spirits young and old who were brought to the other side far too soon due to some type of ailment or disease that took you before your time... welcome this girl as I'm sure she's greeting you with a wagging tail.

 R.I.P. sweet Bella.

Our thoughts and prayers are with Rob at this difficult time.

Fly Bella, Fly!

For more, you can visit Rob's

instagram page CLICK HERE,

his Facebook page, CLICK HERE

or his website, RK Life Illustrated, CLICK HERE

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Monday, September 26, 2016

My Opinion of the Presidential Debate September 26, 2016 YMMV

Segment 1, the economy goes to Trump. His plan much more beneficial. Clinton's plan is disastrous and would put many out of business.

On to segment 2, prosperity/taxes. Segment 2: Nobody answered the question. Both fail.

Segment 3: Clinton loses, disconnected from reality and some really BAD ideas. She proved she's clueless about guns. A couple of good ideas. Addressing help for mental illness is great (except should be addressed state/locally not federally as outlined in the Constitution)
Trump, some good ideas but stop and frisk is a BAD idea, I agree with Hillary on that.
Both agreed on mental illness so they both get points for that.
Trump edges out Clinton only because of her less than stellar support of police.  Otherwise it would be a tie.

Segment 4: This question was poorly asked. Tie.

Cyber-security segment:
Hillary loses. She was so concerned she had an un-secure server and did not even defend it in her segment. She diverted the questions away from cyber security to ISIS to avoid the question.
Trump seems to have a better handle on cyber security than Clinton.

Segment on ISIS:
Trump is correct about getting out, many military leaders had advised against leaving Iraq.
Not so sure about taking the oil.
He's right about the Iran deal. NATO should be paying fair share and what they owe by contract and focus on terrorism. Could have spend his time on ISIS not defending "I did not support the was in Iraq"
Hillary wants to continue same failed policies.
Working with local law enforcement is a good idea.
Hillary flustered.

Last segment. Trump is right about Iran.  Trump takes a firmer stance with foreign countries than Clinton.  She has a women’s touch, which wouldn’t work with many of these countries, especially in the Middle East.  
Clinton is in denial about “putting a lid on nuclear Iran.”  She’s trying very hard, but what she outlined does not represent “standing up to bullies”. 
Hillary is running a more negative ad campaign than Trump and she didn’t deny.  FYI, Hillary, we live in a Republic, not a democracy.

Result: Tied.  Lester Holt asked good questions when he could get them in.  He lost control of the debate several times.

Update: Polls

People say you win or lose a debate in the first 30 minutes. That's probably the reason Trump won the debate in all but one of the polls I've seen. Though Hillary said she spent much time preparing, she appeared less prepared, less at ease and more flustered than Trump. Clinton has a greater disconnect to millennials than Trump. If she wants to win the next debate she'll need to get out of the gate faster and connect better to the millennials.
Trump Win: TIME, CBS, FOX, PIX, Heavy The Hill, Atlantic Patch, Drudge, The Right Scoop, The Hill, True New JerseyClinton Win: Orlando Sentinel

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Why the People Who Agree with This Meme Are the Ones Hurting the Poverty-Stricken

The first thing those who agree meme are going to say is “how am I hurting the poverty-stricken?”  

To understand how, you must first go back and look at our government and our Constitution and understand how the government is supposed to work and why it is not working, why it is not only not helping the poverty-stricken but hurting them in so many ways.
Our founding fathers were some pretty bright men.  They put a lot of thought into our Constitution and to how the country would run best for everyone.  The Constitution was created specifically with checks and balances and to give the people a voice.  Unfortunately, the Constitution has been bastardized by using self-helping “interpretation” of the Constitution for their own purposes.  They do this by convincing people that what they are doing is helping the people and the people give them control. 

The Constitution gives equal power to the federal government and to the states.  The states are not subordinate to the federal government; they have equal power.  Those in the federal government who want control have duped the people into believing that the federal government is above and has more power than the states.  The Constitution says otherwise. 

The Constitution gives the federal government control over managing the country as a whole, such as making treaties and defense: “commonDefence and general Welfare of the United States.”  It does not give the federal government control over caring for the individual, that is left to the state, and as part of the state, communities and individuals.   “Thepowers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibitedby it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”  Keeping the needs of communities and individuals at state level keeps control in the hands of the people.

What happens when the federal government takes over control from the states is that the individual gets lost?  The federal government says: lets help the poverty-stricken and people say ‘yes, lets help the poverty stricken.’  The federal government sets up a generic program to “help the poverty-stricken.”  This generic program has to be broad and generic that it helps the most people with one program.  Unfortunately, doing it this way is costly and impossible to manage well.  It is wasteful and doesn’t best help the people it is purported to help.  What it does do is give control over the people’s lives to those in charge.

To understand how this is especially harmful, bad, and wasteful we must look at how things would be if the government was run as the forefathers had intended and outlined in the Constitution.
First the federal government would only take care of federal matters, in other words making treaties and the defense and care of the country, not the individual, as a whole. They would only need to tax just enough to maintain just those things.  Much less wasteful spending.
All other matters would fall on state and local governments.  In other words, in the hands of the people.  The people of the state and communities would be responsible for caring for their own.  It would be much easier to identify and to help, in individualized ways, the people who need help.  Local tax payers would have a vested interest in where there money goes and therefore there would be less waste and more help.  There would be more assistance for these people because your money wouldn’t go into some generic fund, it would go to help specific people in your community.  You could actually see where your money is going and who it is helping.  People would get back on their feet quicker because the tax payer would hold them responsible.  The tax payer would also be motivated to help them get off of assistance and on to their feet.  The tax payer would ensure people who don’t need the money don’t get the money and that the money is directed to where it is needed most.

So to those who agree with that meme, you are allowing a government who is not supposed to be managing caring for the poverty-stricken to mismanage it instead of insisting you do it yourselves.  It’s lazy and it’s wasteful.  Cutting wasteful spending ensures there is more money for the poverty-stricken.  This can best be done at the local level.

Don't be content with allowing those who don't need the money, your money, to steal it because you think it's some noble gesture to allow people to receive money they don't deserve because you are afraid someone who needs it won't get it.  That's idiotic.  If you really want to help the poverty-stricken, if you want to make sure not a single poverty-stricken family goes hungry, take back control from the federal government and make sure your tax dollars, your charity, your money goes where it needs to go.  You should have control over where your charity money goes.  You decide where it goes.  It will be directed to those who need it and there will be more of it going where it needs to go.  Don’t allow someone else to decide where your charity money goes.  

Monday, July 11, 2016

The Effect $15/min Wage Would Have on My Business

What would happen the day my business would be required to pay $15/hr to our employees?

In order for us to be able to pay our employees and pay our bills drastic changes would have to happen.

Three employees, out of 5 would immediately be laid off.  That is more than 1/2 of our work force. We love and need our employees and don't want to let them go, and they love working for and with us and don't want to go, but we would be forced to let them go because we can't afford to pay them $15/hr.

Over the years we have had to raise prices, small increases of a few cents here and there.  Even a few cents is difficult for many of our poorer customers.  We keep our prices just below or at the big box stores in order to be competitive.  We usually lose some customers with every price increase.  If the minimum wage increased, our prices would have to increase significantly, perhaps by as much as 25-50% in order to be able to pay our remaining staff wages and also for the increase in pricing that we will see from our vendors.  We see price increases every time they have increase in costs such as when gas prices go up or minimum wages go up.  We would no longer be able to compete with the big box stores who will be better able to absorb the increase in wages and inevitable loss of employees better than we will. Their prices will not increase, if at all, as much as ours will.  In case you didn't realize it, the costs to you, the consumer, will also increase.

Within a few weeks we will have lost the majority of our customers, our remaining staff will be exhausted and our store will close forever.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

The Problem with Guns

There is no problem with guns, there's a problem with people.  The problem with guns is that people are focused on guns and not the real problem, people. If gunsare to blame for heinous crimes, why have no guns been convicted of murder?  Simple, guns are inanimate objects, people are the ones committing heinous crimes.  These criminals and terrorists don't follow laws. They don't care if there are gun laws. If someone is going to commit murder, a crime that has the death penalty/life imprisonment, do you really think gun laws will deter them? Terrorists and insane people who want to hurt people will find a way.  If not guns, explosives, planes, cars, or other means to cause harm.  This is because it's not the weapon that is causing the death, it's the person intent on causing death.  The focus must be on preventing people from carrying out heinous crime, not preventing law abiding citizens from protecting themselves and loved ones from those out to hurt them.

The way to prevent these types of incidents isn't to regulate or ban guns, it's to to identify terrorists and to identify and treat those with mental illness who are a danger to themselves and others before they commit heinous acts. To reiterate, people are the problem, not their weapons of choice. Remember, no guns were involved in the 9-11 attacks.

Let's look at facts:

  • Gun control doesn't work.  None of the worst attacks would have been prevented by any form of gun control and likely it was gun laws which prevented people from being armed defending themselves and others.

  • People misuse the term "assault rifle." There is a specific type of rifle, fully automatic that is called an "assault rifle."  Fully automatic rifles are illegal for most people other than military or police and a few select people to possess.  None of the recent attacks involved fully automatic rifles. Media, either intentionally or because they are ignorant, mistakenly call rifles used in the recent crimes "assault rifles."  "AR' does not stand for 'assault rifle' or 'automatic rifle' it stands for ArmaLite rifle, the company that developed it.

In case you don't know what an assault rifle is and what it isn't, here is an explanation:

Some have included semi-automatic weapons that are capable of switching to automatic in the definition of "assault rifle" but they all have the characteristic of being able to fire automatically.  Guns that are strictly semi-automatic are not "assault rifles."  Some people also confuse "assault rifles" with "Assault Weapons" which is something completely different.

The best way to understand firearms, and I recommend this to anyone prior to commenting on gun control laws, is to go to a range, speak with the range master and fire different types of weapons.  

  • The government must do a better job identifying terrorists and prevent them from carrying out heinous acts. We must prevent terrorists from entering the country by improving vetting people who come into the country.  If you can't vet someone, they shouldn't be allowed to enter the country.  Government, FBI, law enforcement must also do a better job identifying terrorists who are in the country. 

  • It is impossible to prevent all attacks and to prevent terrorists from getting firearms (they get them in countries where firearms are banned).  

  • Terrorism and terrorist attacks are only going to get worse, we must be prepared.  We must be armed and trained to protect ourselves and our loved ones.

  •  Most importantly, the government should not make laws that make people incapable of protecting themselves. It is not feasible for police to be everywhere.  What is feasible and what would be the best way to protect ourselves, our families and our children is to be armed and trained.
  • School staff should be properly trained and armed like they do in Israel. We train teachers and staff how to perform first aid/CPR and use an AED to save kids, why not train them to use firearms? This is just another way to protect our precious children.

Israeli Elementary School

  • Firearms are a good defense against terrorism.  People in the nightclub in Orlando were sitting ducks, being murdered while waiting for police with guns to come and save them instead of being armed and saving themselves.

  • For those who say that terrorists and those with mental illness who are dangerous shouldn't be able to get firearms I say, no they shouldn't.  They shouldn't be on the streets where they can buy firearms, or knives or a piece of string.  Identifying them and getting them off the streets is where the focus must be.
Bill Whittle sums it up nicely:

For further information see my post: "Does Research and Statistics Support Gun Control?"