HUD Seeks To Ban Smoking In Public Housing

Johnna Stahl · Albuquerque, New Mexico
If you’re going to ban smoking for poor people, you might as well ban alcohol, too. Kids (and the public) are in more danger from parents who drink than from parents who smoke. We should also ban the use of pesticides on apartment grounds, especially where kids play. And now that we know that meat is carcinogenic, no more outside grilling at apartment complexes. In fact, no more cooking meat inside, either — smoke caused by meat can infect other tenants with cancer. And HUD should make sure its apartment complexes are a certain distance from other causes of pollution, like freeways and industrial sites. When was the last time HUD tested its properties for other toxins, not only in the air, but in the water, too?

This is plain and obvious discrimination against poor people (and renters), especially medical cannabis patients who choose to smoke their medicine. If poor people could afford homes, this discrimination wouldn’t be possible.

Veterans Drop Empty Pill Bottles In Front Of White House To Rally For Medical Marijuana Access

In line with the news, the senate passed the Military Construction and Veterans Affairs (MilCon-VA) Appropriations Bill for 2016 on Tuesday, Nov. 10. The said bill entails VA doctors to prescribe medical marijuana in states where it is legal…

Too bad the government can’t help veterans who live in states that don’t have a medical cannabis program, or veterans trying to cope with a crappy program. And too bad the government can’t help with the cost of a drug that isn’t covered by insurance. If the VA (and Medicare) can cover opioids, why can’t they cover cannabis?

Feel good stuff :)

Young Dad Pens Emotional Letter About Life As A Single Parent

“She’d only ever seen boys skateboard so she just assumed that it was a boy sport,” said Thomas, 29, who grew up skateboarding as a teen. “She and I had a long talk — there’s no such thing as boy things or girl things, there’s just things, so if something interests you, you can do it.”

They dug Thomas’ childhood skateboard out of the basement, bought a pink helmet and went to the skate park…

Within five minutes, though, one skateboarder offered a helping hand and tips that made Peyton’s first time skateboarding a great experience. Later that night, Thomas was so touched she wrote a “Dear teenage boy at the skate park” letter, hoping his parents would see how wonderful he was.

“I want you to know that I am proud that you are part of my community, and I want to thank you for being so kind to my daughter, even though your friends made fun of you for it,” she wrote in the letter that’s since gone viral. “She left the skate park with a sense of pride and with the confidence that she can do anything, because of you.” …

In case you missed it, here’s my experience at a local skate park:

Maybe a star can only shine for a short time

Some critics say that this movie was like watching a train wreck, and perhaps it was. But more than that, it’s about this young woman, her gigantic talent, and her deep love of music. Of course, it’s also about her bulimia and abuse of alcohol, drugs, and love. But just like every other person who suffers from mental illness, Amy Winehouse was so much more than just her addictions.

After winning a Grammy, Amy remarked to one of her best friends:  “This is so boring without drugs.” As someone who considers boredom an enemy, I can certainly understand where she was coming from, but…

Here’s this awesome young woman, with character, courage, sass, and a talent that couldn’t be contained — and yet she suffered from bulimia and low self-esteem. And her incredible talent wasn’t enough to keep her from boredom. It’s sad and it’s tragic, but how could we have saved her? I sure wish I knew…

Watching Amy’s decline, all of it so public, and the reactions of the media and comedians (like Jay Leno)… she was treated brutally. Why is it okay to make fun of people who are suffering from addiction?

What’s the difference between Amy Winehouse and someone like Adele? Is it the otherworldly talent that turns creative people towards drug addiction or is it the people that they surround themselves with? Or is it our DNA that has control?

What would you do if you lived in the middle of a war zone?

I love a good documentary, and Cartel Land is one of the best documentaries that I’ve ever seen. Seriously. What director Matthew Heineman was able to catch on film is amazing, but he was also able to put it all together in a format that is just stunning — the man really knows how to tell a story. (He won the International Documentary Association’s Courage Under Fire Award last week.)

As a chronic pain patient and an American, I’ve seen a different part of the drug war than those who live not too far away from me in Mexico. This movie illustrates why people from Mexico risk their lives to cross our borders — they are refugees caught in the middle of America’s drug war, just like the refugees crossing European borders are escaping wars in the Middle East. When America makes war, everybody loses.