Archive for September, 2009

Nebraska Recognizes Other States’ Concealed Carry!

September 3, 2009

It’s finally happened, and I’m thrilled!  My home state of Nebraska now recognizes most other states’ concealed carry permits.  This includes the states on either side of Kansas City, where I live.  I’m thrilled personally, because aside from the Missouri side of KC, Nebraska is the only other state I ever really visit.  Both my immediate family and my wife’s entire family are up there.  I’ll be hunting there in November, and with a little luck I should have my permit by then.

On a grander scale, looking at how this law affects more than just me: concealed carry permits from at least 34  states are now recognized by Nebraska.  They enacted basically the same law that Kansas did this year.  If another state has concealed carry requirements that are equal to or greater than our own, we recognize them as valid.  It took a while for the Nebraska Attorney General’s office to compile the list, but they finished it recently.

This is definitely a step forward, but I feel for states like Vermont that put no restrictions on a person’s right to concealed carry.  You don’t even need a special permit there.  Perhaps they should offer the option of a state sponsored permit expressly for the purpose of taking advantage of new reciprocity laws.  I’d spend money and take a class in order to open up more states I could carry in.  Heck, I’d toyed with the idea of an Arizona permit just for that reason.

Of course ultimately, I think it’s a person’s right to carry, and that means no state should be able to put any restrictions on that.  Between the certification (class and ammo, $120), filing fees ($150), and permit issuance ($20) It cost me almost $300 total.  I’ve spent all but the last $20, since I’m currently in the 45-90 day wait for the permit approval from the state.  This is cost prohibitive for many Americans, which isn’t right.

It’s only when criminals know there is a very real chance of victims being armed that it will begin to have the greatest impact on crime.  Who would rob a bank if you knew 2-3 of the customers on average were carrying guns?  That’s why Vermont’s law makes the most sense.

The one upside, for now, is that permits add legitimacy.  We can obviously see how states like Nebraska, Kansas, and others value requirements when deciding what other states to honor.  Also more businesses are taking down those no-gun signs from their doors, after responsible concealed carry holders explain the difference.  The general public is already prohibited from carrying in most states.  The sign only serves to restrict the people who have been properly trained, certified, and background checked.  No bank robber’s plans were ever foiled by a door sticker.

Learning to Live with Hunger

September 1, 2009

Yesterday I took some time to really contemplate hunger.  As I’m trying to lose weight, I’ve realized that maybe the discomfort of slight hunger is akin to the slight discomfort from say, not having your house at the perfect temperature at all times.  People lived without air conditioning for all of history, save the last 50 years or so.  Now, we’re uncomfortable when the temperature is even a couple degrees from perfect.

I think maybe the same goes for hunger.  We live with such abundance here in America.  Even in those first shaky years of my marriage and family, when money was scarce and rent was almost always late, I was never hungry.  The idea of always eating until we’re full seems just as “given” as the idea of always controlling the temperature to within a couple degrees.

I’m starting to think this is wrong.  Defining the end of every meal as being the point of total satisfaction (and often more) is a recipe for disaster.  I see now how I got overweight.  I expected to feel “full” after every meal, and even the slightest hunger was a discomfort I was unwilling to live with.  I think if I can learn to live with even the smallest amount of hunger, I can eat much less.

My wife gives the kids as much as they want to eat.  That sounds good on the surface, but I’m starting to think it’s wrong, and will leave them as overweight as she and I have become.  Refills of sweet breakfast cereal until kids no longer desire more seems dangerous.  Perhaps just a single serving is in order.  And if the kids are really still hungry, something more nutritious(and less tasty) like toast is probably a better way to go.  If you’re really hungry, you’ll eat toast.  But it doesn’t take more than a sweet tooth to down another bowl of sugary cereal, even the varieties that are “healthier”.

This summer I did a great job of conditioning myself to live with the mild discomfort of temperature.  I didn’t use my mustang’s a/c at all, even when hopping on the interstate for 20 minutes or so meant keeping the windows rolled up.  Eventually, it didn’t even seem like discomfort at all, and I’m genuinely shocked at times when my wife needs air conditioning.  I did the same thing with physical effort, upping my daily tolerance.  Perhaps I can do the same thing with hunger.  Maybe if I’m always comfortable with a mild amount of hunger, and I accept this mentally, weight will become a non-issue.  And it’s not a bad survival skill!