Thursday, March 20, 2014

More Politics

Then there's Georgia's new proposed gun law that no longer would require those using the Stand Your Ground defense to even be in compliance with Georgia’s Criminal Code. Under this law, a felon who has illegally obtained a gun (it is by definition illegal for a felon to have one) can now fire at will at someone, say, playing rap music too loudly in their car or carrying a particularly offensive package of Skittles, as long as they claim they saw that person reach for "something."  The fact that they’re committing a crime by even having a gun will not get in the way of the Stand Your Ground defense.

Meanwhile, an abortion bill heading towards Gov. Nathan Deal's desk would require victims of rape to pay for their own treatment if they decided not to keep the gift of nature's little miracle.  The law would prohibit abortion coverage in the State Health Benefit Plan or in the federal healthcare exchange set up under the Affordable Care Act.  The only exception would be if the mother's life is in jeopardy, but victims of rape are not exempted.

But all is not lost as Gov. Deal has a plan to keep open those rural hospitals that keep closing down. No, it's not that one that makes sense where Deal expands Medicaid under the ACA.  First, Deal wants to make it so that hospitals can turn away without treatment those who are not- or under-insured.  Then, his plan involves paring back the services offered by hospitals that are facing financial hardship.  The hospitals would stay open, but would only offer the most basic emergency services if another full-service hospital is within 35 minutes, sort of like a sad, mostly vacant strip mall, but one with the ability to dump on the street those requiring emergency treatment without evidence of being able to pay.

What else?  There's a bill for $17 million in bonds to expand parking at the Georgia World Congress Center, which really means that Georgia taxpayers would pick up the tab for a parking deck for the new Falcons stadium.   A "Preservation of Religious Freedom Act, " similar to the one that even Arizona found too extreme, has been re-introduced that would allow business owners to discriminate against gay and other minority groups if they felt their religious beliefs were being compromised.

The good news is that today is the last day of the legislative session, so all this madness should stop soon, but damage is already being done.    

1 comment:

Caro said...

I love that the sentence about the falcons stadium is followed by the one about the religious freedom act!