Please note the incredible credentials and accomplishments of this woman doctor originally from Colombia. She just got convicted of attempted murder in Houston. She put anti-freeze into her lover’s coffee. She now faces up to life in prison.
Men be faithful to the women close to you!!! I have learned this the hard way.
Thanks too Netflix I got to see this jewel of a little known film. It’s about three groups of people who decided to forsake normal civilized life and got to live on the island of Floreana in the Galapagos Islands. Some were highly-trained professionals. The story did not have a happy ending. One couple,most likely, was murdered. The probable killers died later in a boating mishap between islands. A German medical doctor who settled there died of either accidental or intentional poisoning. Ironically some other people survived and built a life there.
For all of those in NASA and in private companies with a goal of colonizing Mars, this film is a “must see.” It shows some of the pit falls of sending humans far away to a hostile environment. I am a firm advocate of sending humans to live on Mars. This film made me think. We must plan such endeavors with the greatest care.
Sometimes small bureaucratic battles fought for years and having a good outcome make one feel wonder. While in the US Navy I went to graduate school of business at night at George Washington University. I was the only enlisted man in my classes. All of the other students and most of the teachers were military officers. I attended this wonderful university from February of 1972 to June of 1973. I never graduated and that was a huge mistake in my life. To add insult to injury, the Registrar’s Office at George Washington University could find no record of my attendance. After over two years of correspondence a wonderful lady named Renee Kamauf finally found my records. I have officially applied for my transcript. Slowly but surely I am getting back small pieces of my life that I considered lost forever.
Everyone I predicted the outcome of the Oscar Pistorius murder trial in South Africa correctly. I’ve watched enough hours on real-life crime stories to have learned something about murders between domestic partners. They happen for three reasons as follows:
1) One of the partners has found someone else. They want to get rid of their current partner to be with the new person.
2) One of the partners stands to get a whole bunch of money if the other partner dies.
3) One of the partners has been a victim of bad domestic abuse for a long time and decides to bring it to an end and get even with the abuser.
The Oscar Pistorius case fit none of these criteria. In my mind it was always a manslaughter or culpable homicide case over charged because of the fame of both domestic partners involved.
What brought us to this tragic point where a bright and beautiful young woman lost her life and the state spent millions of dollars of the taxpayer’s money prosecuting Oscar?
Before I give you an answer, I need to make one point clear, Despite the fact that I live in a firearms-free house, I support the Second Amendment to the US Constitution that grants citizens the right to bear arms. I feel that any person with a legal right to have a gun should have one, if they desire to have a gun. I also have zero tolerance for any violence against women.
Obviously Oscar is responsible for his actions. He is sane and knows the difference between right and wrong. However before this tragedy Oscar was observed by friends and even police officers being irresponsible with firearms to the point that he was a danger to others.
Here is what should have happened as follows:
1) The South African Police should have come to his home. They would have given him an order to surrender his firearms and his firearms license.
2) This order would further instruct him to take a rigorous firearms handling course similar to those given to people in the South African Police and South African Defense Forces. The order would also instruct him to go to a psychiatrist for an in depth and rigorous mental health examination.
3) This order would have further stated that Oscar would get his firearms and firearms license back when he passed the firearms handling course and mental health examination.
Had these steps been followed Reeva Steenkamp would still be alive and the millions of dollars spent on this criminal case by the South African government could have been spent or worthy things like health care and housing for the poor.
Today is the beginning of my 18th year in the San Francisco Bay area. I have never lived in one place so long in my life!!!!! In early September of 1996 I left Houston with less than $200 in my pockets and all the personal possessions that I had. I took a Greyhound bus to San Jose, California. As I rode into town I listened to a radio station playing songs in Portuguese and enjoyed the beautiful day. I could not imagine the hard times and the good moments that lay ahead of me. My heart was full of hope and joy that afternoon.
Yesterday I found myself in a giant bureaucratic hassle at the San Francisco International Airport.
A couple of weeks ago Elena signed up for the CLEAR program and paid a $179.00 annual fee.Their logo promises:”Speed through airport security in less than 5 minutes any time that you fly.” Elena was electronically finger printed and had a retina scan taken.
Most likely her fingerprints, names, and other details were checked against all the “no fly” lists, intelligence data bases, National Crime Information Center and Interpol (for criminal records and outstanding warrants), the IRS data base, child support enforcement, etc.
(By the way I served in the US Navy. I had a secret security clearance and was considered for a top-secret clearance when I was offered a job at the US Navy section in the White House in 1972. What Elena went through was just what anyone goes through to get a secret security clearance.)
Elena passed this rigorous background check and was given an impressive-looking CLEAR card. We assumed that she would go to the airport and fly through security rapidly without the necessity to take off her shoes, pull out her laptop and be subject to an x-ray body search with its radiation exposure.
Many of us have learned in life that what the book says is supposed to happen and what happens in real life are two different things. When Elena arrived at SFO to begin the journey to New Orleans, she went right to the front of the CLEAR line. She expected a quick walk through security.Instead an employee of CLEAR escorted her to the normal security line where she was forced to take off her shoes, pull out her laptop computer and go through the dreaded x-ray body search with its radiation. We both were mad as hell. We were sure that some large error had happened.
Likewise when we were getting ready to board the plane to return from New Orleans, Elena was subject to the same indignity. We were even madder.
Yesterday I went to the CLEAR booth in the international terminal at SFO. A very bright and charming young woman named Ann looked at Elena’s card, the boarding passes,etc. She carefully explained to me that the CLEAR card gets one rapidly through the line. The Transportation Safety Administration determines who gets TSA pre-screened so that they do not have to go through indignities like taking off shoes, pulling out laptops, and being subject to invasive and radiation-filled body searches. Ann told me that I had to go to a special Transportation Safety Administration office that handled TSA Pre-screened.
I spent one hour walking around two levels of the SFO international terminal and talking to several people before I found a tiny office sandwiched in between Starbuck’s and BART. A lady on duty told me that Elena would have to come to that office during normal working hours (9:00 AM-5:00 PM Monday through Friday to have her finger prints taken to get accepted into the TSA pre-screened program.
The people at CLEAR never told us this. It sounds to me like there is a big bureaucratic battle going on between the people at the CLEAR program and the TSA. The TSA people fear that the CLEAR program will put them out of business.
I explained all of this to Elena. She agreed to go to the TSA and be finger printed. She wondered why it was necessary to pay a fee to get the CLEAR card. I think that the CLEAR card started with the noble intention of speeding very trust-worthy travelers through the security process. The Transportation Safety Administration felt threatened and decided to put obstacles in the path of the CLEAR program.