Month: July 2016

California: Hardest State for Law-Abiding Citizens to Buy a Gun

A listing of the most difficult states for law-abiding citizens to acquire firearms shows California as the most difficult of all. The listing, compiled by 24/7 Wall St, shows that law-abiding citizens in California have to go through a universal background check for any gun purchase — whether private, retail, or at a gun show. These checks require the “dealer…[to] submit an application to the Department of Justice in order to determine whether the buyer meets the state’s stringent background check criteria.” Law-abiding gun buyers are required to have a Handgun Safety Certificate before purchasing handguns. And the California Department of Justice webpage explains that “purchasers of handguns must provide proof of California residency, such as a utility bill, residential lease, property deed, or government-issued identification (other than a drivers license or other DMV-issued identification).” California requires a 10-day waiting period on all gun purchases. On July 1, Governor Jerry Brown signed legislation expanding universal background checks to include ammunition purchases as well, and expanding the state’s “assault weapons” ban. He also signed a ban on the possession of “high capacity” magazines. These laws make the path for a acquiring a firearm very circuitous for law-abiding citizens, while criminals bypass the controls and acquire their guns through personal connections far from the watchful eye of law enforcement.

Best snacks to eat late at night

Dinner is over and you’re getting ready for bed—but your stomach is wide awake. While health experts often advise avoiding late night snacking entirely, if you’re genuinely hungry late in the evening you shouldn’t feel like your only option is to tough it out until morning. Choosing a light and nutritious snack can satisfy your appetite and keep you from overdoing it on the box of cookies when you tell yourself you’ll eat just one. Next time your stomach growls before bed, try one of these healthy and satisfying snacks to take the edge off your hunger. Just click here.

Space radiation took a toll on Apollo astronauts, study says

The rarified group of men who blasted off from Earth on the Apollo missions in the 1960s and 70s have suffered from much higher rates of death by cardiovascular disease than not only other astronauts, but a slice of the U.S. population as a whole, a new study finds. Researchers looked at the rate of death from cardiovascular disease among astronauts who never flew in space, went to space but stayed in low-Earth orbit, and the Apollo astronauts, who went further away from Earth than anyone else. Of the 24 Apollo astronauts who flew into deep space, eight have died and seven were included in the study. The eighth astronaut – Edgar Mitchell – died after the data analysis had been completed. That’s much higher than the other groups the researchers considered. Astronauts who never flew, or who flew in low-Earth orbit, had much lower rates of death from heart disease than the Apollo astronauts. And, for those non-Apollo astronauts, the rates of death from cardiovascular disease were much lower than death from Americans in general between the ages of 55 and 64. The Earth’s magnetosphere helps to protect people on the ground and in orbit from cosmic radiation. “We know very little about the effects of deep space radiation on human health, particularly on the cardiovascular system,” Michael Delp, the first author on the new study and a professor at Florida State University, said in a statement. “This gives us the first glimpse into its adverse effects on humans.” But the Apollo numbers are small. The study took into account just seven astronauts from the Apollo mission who have died, and says that 43 percent of them succumbed to cardiovascular disease— which is three people. This new study comes at a time when NASA is eyeing a manned trip to Mars or an asteroid at some point in the future— and SpaceX turns its gaze to Mars too— and suggests that exposure to space radiation is an important factor to consider. As the study, which was published in the journal Scientific Reports, says, “These data suggest that human travel into deep space may be more hazardous to cardiovascular health than previously estimated.”

Starnes: Newspaper rejects ad over the word “Christian”

The owners of a Christian bookstore in Knoxville, Tennessee were dumbfounded after the News Sentinel rejected their ad because it included an offensive word – “Christian.” Lois McGinnis and her family own Cedar Springs Christian Store. They recently decided to close a second location of the store so they decided to place an ad in the classified section of the newspaper, which is owned by Gannett. The advertisement read: “Store closing sale – Cedar Springs Christian Store – Clinton Highway location – All merchandise, fixtures, slat walls must go. Sale through August 13, phone 865.947.XXX.” Mrs. McGinnis placed the ad on July 26. It was supposed to run on July 28. But when she opened up the newspaper – the ad was nowhere to be found. So Mrs. McGinnis phoned the newspaper and spoke with a classified ad employee. “She said our ad did not run because it contained an offensive word,” she told me. “I asked what that offensive word was and she said the offensive word was ‘Christian.’” She said the News Sentinel did not notify her in advance the ad had been rejected nor did they call to say they were refunding her money. “We had no way of knowing they considered the word ‘Christian’ offensive until we tried to place this ad,” she told me. “As Christians, this was a slap in the face to us,” she added. So the bookstore decided to tell their customers what happened in a very clever Facebook posting. It was simply titled, “Do you find the word ‘Christian’ offensive?” Let’s just say the good, church-going folks of East Tennessee lit up the telephones – and it wasn’t too much long afterwards that the Knoxville News Sentinel addressed the issue. They offered up one heaping helping of an apology “for any misunderstanding about the News Sentinel stance on Christianity.” “We had a system failure, which resulted in a classified ad for Cedar Springs getting hung up in our front end system,” they wrote in a statement posted online. A front end problem, eh? “We corrected the technology issue in our system and the ad is now running for an extended period at no extra charge,” they added. And for the record – the newspaper does not have a problem with Jesus. “The News Sentinel does not have a bias against Christianity or any other religion,” publisher Patrick Birmingham wrote in response to online critics. However, the newspaper’s explanation doesn’t seem to be placating its readers. “Considering how liberal this paper is…I take the apology with a grain of salt,” one reader wrote on Facebook. Another wrote, “Don’t be offended Cedar Springs Christian Stores… Nobody has read the Knoxville News Sentinel in over a decade anyway. Spend your advertising dollars elsewhere.” “I cannot believe they are doing this now. I am so glad I do not subscribe to them or give them my business. To not sell an ad because the store’s name has the word Christian in it is absolutely wrong. I guess if the store was called Cedar Springs Muslim store it would be published. I hate to tell them, but the majority of the people who live here proclaim to be Christian,” another irate reader added. Well, let’s hope the News Sentinel has fixed their front end problem – lest their readers give them a back end problem. -Todd Starnes is host of Fox News & Commentary, heard on hundreds of radio stations. His latest book is “God Less America: Real Stories From the Front Lines of the Attack on Traditional Values.” Follow Todd on Twitter@ToddStarnes and find him on Facebook

At least 5 US troops wounded in Afghanistan fighting Islamic State

Five U.S. special operations troops were wounded in combat with Islamic State fighters in eastern Afghanistan, the senior U.S. commander in the country said Thursday. It appeared to be the first reported instance of U.S. troops being wounded in fighting against the Islamic State in Afghanistan. U.S. military spokesmen in Kabul said they were researching the question of whether there have been previous casualties in combat with IS, which is present mainly in the country’s eastern regions. IS bases in the eastern province of Nangarhar, which borders Pakistan, are currently being targeted by an Afghan military offensive, backed by U.S. troops. The Afghan offensive began on Saturday, hours after the IS group claimed responsibility for a suicide bomb attack in the capital Kabul that killed around 80 people. Gen. John Nicholson, the top commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, said the five wounded Americans were hit by small arms fire or shrapnel during a combat operation conducted with Afghan special operations forces to clear areas once controlled by the Islamic State in Nangarhar. He did not say exactly when the injuries happened. The Pentagon later issued what it called a clarification, saying one of the five was wounded on Sunday and the other four on Monday. “There was not one incident or specific firefight, but these service members were wounded over the course of the clearing operations General Nicholson described,” a Pentagon spokesman, Adam Stump, said in a statement. “As General Nicholson indicated, we’re not able to discuss further specifics at this point of the counterterrorism operation.” Speaking to reporters at the Pentagon from his headquarters in Kabul, Nicholson said none of the wounds are life-threatening. Three of the soldiers have been evacuated to a U.S. military hospital in Germany, he said. “They’re in good spirits,” Nicholson said. “They’ve talked to their families. We expect a full recovery.” The other two wounded have been returned to duty in Afghanistan, he said. Nicholson said the casualties happened during a counterterrorism operation in which Afghan forces have recaptured ground previously held by the Islamic State, following U.S. airstrikes. Thus far, operations have been successful, Nicholson said. “We have helped the Afghan security forces to reclaim significant portions of the territory that was previously controlled by Daesh,” he said, using an alternative acronym for the Islamic militant group. “We have killed many Daesh commanders and soldiers, destroyed key infrastructure capabilities, logistical nodes, and Daesh fighters are retreating south into the mountains of southern Nangarhar as we speak.” He said the number of IS fighters in Afghanistan has declined from an estimated 3,000 at the start of this year to between 1,000 and 1,500. The majority of those in Nangarhar are former members of a Pakistan Taliban group known as TTP, he said, adding that they were largely forced out of Pakistan by a government offensive and joined IS earlier this year.

It was only a matter of time…  We’re just glad these brave warriors will make full recoveries.

Concealed carrier receives Citizen’s Award of Valor for saving Ohio police officer

An Ohio man with a concealed carry permit was presented an award this week for saving a Mount Vernon police officer who was being attacked by a suspect. Cpl. Michael Wheeler of Ohio’s Mount Vernon Police Department recounted Wednesday an incident last year when he was attacked by a homeless crystal meth addict. Cpl. Wheeler said the suspect knocked him onto his back and pinned him to the ground, The Federalist reported. “I’ve never been in that situation before,” the 14-year department veteran told Inside Edition. “I’ve always been able to take control of a situation.” Cpl. Wheeler said the man was reaching for his firearm when Dylan DeBoard appeared with a handgun drawn. The officer said Mr. DeBoard announced he had a concealed weapon permit, and the suspect put his hands in the air. That’s when Cpl. Wheeler managed to flip the suspect over and handcuff him. Earlier this week, Cpl. Wheeler awarded Mr. DeBoard with the city’s Citizen’s Award of Valor. He said he often stops by Mr. DeBoard’s home just to thank him. “Every time I see him I let him know how much I appreciate what he did,” the officer said. “I wish a lot more of society would do what he did. There were people standing around, but they were just watching. I kept wondering why people didn’t do anything.”

No kidding..   What a great story!  Kudos to Dylan for stepping up like that!  Excellent!!   🙂

Marine Corps F-18 crashes in California, killing pilot

A Marine Corps F/A-18C warplane crashed in the California desert and the pilot was killed, the service said Friday. The jet went down around 10:30 p.m. Thursday during a training mission in the vicinity of Twentynine Palms, according to a statement from Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, the aircraft’s San Diego-area base. The sprawling Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center is located at Twentynine Palms, about 140 miles east of Los Angeles. The pilot from the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing was not identified. The cause of the crash was under investigation. The nature of the training mission was not specified. The F/A-18C is a twin-engine fighter-attack aircraft capable of multiple types of missions.

Very sad news..

Smithsonian Institution hiring first ever beer historian

It’s the career opportunity of a lifetime for sudsy sippers across the country. The Smithsonian Institute’s Museum of American History is looking to hire a beer historian for a three-year appointment based in Washington, D.C. Museum curator Paula Johnson told the Washington City Paper that the job is a brand new position funded by the Brewers Association—a national trade group that represents craft beer makers and that the Smithsonian is looking for a candidate who can “focus and dedicate efforts towards research, documentation, and collecting American brewing history.” “We have collected food history for many years, so when we were doing the research for the exhibition, which is all about big changes in the post WW II era in how and what we eat, one thing we were curious about is the craft beer movement,” Johnson says. “We were looking at wine, coffee, cheese, artisanal bread, and farmers markets. Well, this movement with small-scale, local regional beer is part of the ethos.” Currently, the Museum of American History has information about beer history dating back to the late 19th and early 20th centuries, but very little from the 1960s til today—which many consider to be the heyday of the craft beer movement. According to data from the Brewers Association, there are now 4,269 breweries in America—a historical high since 1873, when there were 4,131 breweries in the country.The number of beermakers in the U.S. jumped 15 percent in 2015 alone. The historian/scholar position requires individuals to travel, interview beer industry professionals, write articles about beer, perform research for exhibits and archives—and of course drink the stuff. The position pays $64,650 plus plenty of bubbly benefits. According to the official posting, “Candidates with an advanced degree in American business, brewing, food, cultural, or similar specialization within history are encouraged to apply.” But beer lovers should get moving. Applications for the Smithsonian Food Project’s beer history expert are due Aug. 10.

How cool would that be!??     🙂

John Bolton: Donald Trump Didn’t Tell Russia to Hack Hillary Clinton; They Probably Already Have Her Emails

Appearing on Thursday’s Breitbart News Daily with SiriusXM host Stephen K. Bannon, former U.N. Ambassador John Bolton addressed the “famous email flap” from Donald Trump’s press conference on Wednesday. “I heard what he said. He did not call on the Russians to hack into Hillary’s computer,” Bolton said. “He was making the point – I understood it when I heard it the first time; I’m sure most people did – that the Russians probably already had her emails. They got them when Hillary put them in that unsecured email server.” Bannon and Bolton both noted that veteran intelligence officers have made that point clear enough. Trump was echoing what top CIA officials have said about the certainty of foreign intelligence services penetrating Hillary Clinton’s unsecured email server. In the process, he successfully goaded Democrats and their media allies into admitting something they have long denied–that Clinton’s deleted emails probably do contain information she was not legally allowed to delete, and that America’s adversaries should not have seen. “What Trump was saying was the Russians are already there. They probably know more about Hillary’s email than the FBI because Hillary’s lawyers erased all those 30,000 emails that were not turned over to the State Department,” Bolton noted.

As usual, former Ambassador John Bolton is exactly right.  Excellent!

8 vacation hot spots for serious treasure hunters

From pirates who left behind buried booty to gold miners whose legendary stash was never discovered, there are plenty of mysteries out there about cash, gold and assorted treasure yet to be found. These legends have inspired a variety of new TV shows including “The Curse of Oak Island” and “Legend of the Superstitions” on the History Channel. Now tourists can flock to these locales in search of real lost treasure. Book a trip to any one of these locations steeped in gilded history. Who knows? You just might leave your vacation with a little something extra in your pockets.

Fun!  To see the list, click on the text above.     🙂