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The Oregon Shooting And Gun Regulation In The US

9th October 2015 | Politics

The Oregon Shooting And Gun Regulation In The US
Nine people were killed in a shooting at Umpqua Community College in Oregon last week. This is not the first mass shooting in America in recent times; in fact it’s become something of an epidemic threat, with deaths from guns reaching a staggering 10,000 a year. This figure far exceeds the number killed by terrorism, and yet the US government spends billions of dollars on security measures; they even make you take your shoes off at the airport because of one shoe bomb incident! It is bizarre how it took a single occasion to change entire airport security protocol, however after several mass shootings, there’s still been no change in gun policy.

Calls for gun regulation have been countered for a number of reasons. To start, important, albeit outdated, 2nd amendment entails the right to bear arms, something which Americans have clung to dearly. Additionally, the National Rifle Association, which provides significant financial backing to the Republican Party, promotes gun provision. The Republicans currently control both chambers in the law-making Congress, therefore any reformation in gun legislature is made unlikely. This has perturbed Obama, as he sought gun control, but can’t achieve it without cross-party support. He gave a 12 minute emotional address this week after the shooting expressing such frustration, adding that not securing gun reform was one of his biggest regrets as President. Nonetheless, he has received criticism for politicising the issue – by encouraging Americans to vote Democrat – and not doing enough to fix the issue in his first two years as President.

We had numerous messages on the show regarding this subject. Many defended the general British stance that America must alter its position. After all, this country – and most other Western nations – made it much harder to purchase…

Focus on Guatemala: Mental Illness

29th September 2015 | Politics

Focus on Guatemala: Mental Illness
The Federico Moro Psychiatric Facility located in Guatemala City, has been deemed ‘The Most Dangerous Hospital in the World’. Housing roughly 340 patients, it has received this title due to its horrific conditions and mistreatment of patients.

Chris Rogers a BBC journalist, who gained access to the hospital in 2014, exposed the shocking standard of care in the facility. This included the overuse of solitary confinement, forced treatment including sedation and most worryingly the regular physical and sexual abuse of patients. When visiting the facility he described many patients were heavily sedated and left to lie in the baking heat of the concrete courtyard.

Mr. Rogers also described ‘walking into one of the wards is alike to entering hell on earth’. These wards house more mentally disturbed patients, many who are dangerous criminals. Whilst in the hospital facility Mr. Rogers met the hospital director Romeo Minera, who confirmed that sedation and isolation rooms are overused in an effort to control the more mentally disturbed patients. Although this is designed to ensure the safety of the staff and other patients, it represents the disturbing idea that in Federico Moro those with mental illness are treated as prisoners rather than as patients.

The striking mix of patients is even more disturbing. Dangerous criminals are housed alongside people with physical disabilities or those who have learning difficulties. Of course many of these patients should not even be in a mental facility and the hospital director Mr. Minera went further on to admit, that up to 70% of the patients at the facility shouldn’t be there.

Unfortunately there is a lot of stigma associated with disability and mental illness in Guatemala. This stigma results in disabled or mentally ill individuals being abandoned by their families and left to…

Corbyn Gains Labour Leader Status

29th September 2015 | Politics

Corbyn Gains Labour Leader Status
Jeremy Corbyn was the victor in the Labour leadership battle. A few months ago if you had said he was going to win I think almost everyone including himself would have laughed at you, and yet here we are, Jeremy Corbyn a 66 year old backbencher has just got the highest job in the Labour Party.

At the start of the leadership battle, Andy Burnham was the front runner with Yvette Copper the main competition and Liz Kendall also contending. Jeremy Corbyn entered to make the competition more diverse and turn away from the new Labour way of thinking, which has seen them lose elections. He hoped to turn back to old Labour - when they were winning. To enter the race other Labour MPs put their names forward to accept him, some just said yes to open the debate, not many thought he would actually win.

Over 250,000 supporters and members voted him in to office. His first public engagement was to speak at a pro migrants and refugees rally in central London, at this he thanked his supporters and broadly said what his plans are to help the migrants. By going to this pre-planned event, it showed that he is still going to be the down to earth man he has always been. He has had to clarify his - and now the party's standings, on important issues that are splitting the party and country, including the EU, Trident and refugee crisis.

Corbyn has been in the job nearly three weeks now and in that time he has made some controversial moves. He received criticism for not singing the National Anthem at the memorial for the Battle of Britain. This was seen as disrespectful to the Queen, and as the official leader of the…