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by Layla

Jerry Springer’s program can be a freak show when it covers certain topics. You would be disappointed if it were any other way. One of them is domestic violence. Horror stories in this area abound, yet audiences eat it up—me included. It is human nature. I think it makes those of us who are not facing this scenario feel better about our lives. We sort of live vicariously through others, however, and it is a psychological fact of life.

When couples turn to ugly violence, the subject of weapons sometimes comes up. I have heard more than one battered wife complain about a ruthless husband who either threatens with a gun drawn at her or makes mention of it as a kind of challenge. It is a way to have complete dominance over another person and it is insidious. Organisations like Gun Allegiance are working to promote responsible gun ownership – after all, every right comes with a responsibility. Wives who live in such fear need a safe house for protection. Far too many accidents occur even when the bearer of the firearm does not have a specific intention. People in anger easily get out of control.

It is interesting that show sponsors are companies that in some way relate to the topic of the day. In terms of domestic violence, I have seen wall and gun safe businesses buy advertising. I have also seen such companies get free promotional consideration when the subject turns to safety in the home. Any family that has a gun on premises needs to hear a sponsor out on eliminating access. You must never leave a dial combination lock inactivated or give out an electronic code. You must not keep the guns in plain sight.

More often than not, a wall safe is used for multiple purposes. People keep important documents there, jewelry, cash, as well as a weapon or two. You want fire, flood, earthquake, and theft protection. But on the negative side, the safe gets opened a bit too often, posing risks for the home inhabitants. It is never a good idea for children to see an exposed gun on regular occasions. You can explain that there is one without divulging its whereabouts.

While guns are certainly within the law and are often needed for self-protection, they should never be used as a threat in a domestic situation. Too many of these can go awry if tempers flare to the boiling point. I can appreciate that these gun safe sponsors are not touting the possession of weapons for their own sake but focus more on housing them to keep family members from harm. They suggest that one person be in control and warn others of possible peril.

Beyond touting extreme care and caution, I also appreciate the way gun safe companies offer options and safeguards. For example, you can elect to operate your safe by voice command, fingerprint, date of birth, etc. It is called biometrics. You can also place the safe on a closet wall as opposed to the den or rec room for example. No matter what you do, security is the major concern and the motivation for having the unit in the first place.

He Gets an ‘A’ for Creativity

by Layla

I have some time between classes and I wanted to get this down for all of you to see what you thought. I watch a regional talk show that airs here sometimes so that I have a comparison base to the Jerry Springer Show. It’s very similar in format—host that asks serious questions amidst a tremendous amount of chaos, guests who seem more interested in threatening and bodily harm than talking out their issues, and a lot of craziness. Jerry Springer created this style of show and has ruled the airwaves with it for years; sometimes I’ll watch shows like this just to see the influence he’s had over daytime television.

This particular episode was real terrible. On Springer, it is intentional chaos to sway viewers, and this show looked like the host was overwhelmed by the antics of the guests. He looked hopelessly lost as the guests—a married couple where the husband just found out he was being cheated on—completely attacked each other and the boyfriend, who of course was a guest too. Chairs were thrown, again, not entirely unusual, but they usually don’t hit a cameraman! The husband was furious, and I guess he was a contractor, because he started yelling about all these tools he was going to go home and attack the boyfriend with. One of them was an air compressor, which I didn’t get at all. How would that work? It’s just air. Although he did say he was going to blow the guy up like a balloon, which was pretty funny.

I tell you what, if you google that, you’ll find sites like this can find out some scary stuff. Apparently a guy in New Zealand fell on an air compressor hose while it was on and basically did inflate himself like a balloon. He had terrible swelling in one leg and fluid in a lung, so I guess it is possible to do it to someone deliberately if you’re determined enough. Apparently you can get an embolism (an air bubble that blocks a blood vessel) if it gets into your system either through a break in the skin or if it makes one on its own. This can be serious and even sometimes fatal, depending on where it is and if it travels. You know how they found this out, though? People were blowing air on themselves after working to get themselves “clean.” Not the greatest of ideas, people! If you want to be a jerk, it seems you really can do some damage if you are mean (or in this guy’s case, angry) enough. According to my internet research, if you were to intentionally aim it at someone’s mouth at a high pressure, you could damage their lungs and esophagus; if you aim it near someone’s ear, you can rupture their ear drum. There were other injuries but I think I had grossed myself out by then and stopped reading.

I did learn that regular and safe operation of a compressor that is properly maintained doesn’t typically result in bodily harm, but like anything else, if you don’t follow safety procedures and wear safety gear, you can hurt yourself with compressed air or with any debris you’re blowing around.

So I guess the moral of that episode was don’t cheat on a contractor!