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Monthly Archives: March 2017

I Need My Happily Ever After Still

I had no idea that I was going to need a divorce lawyer. I was married for six years to the man who I thought I would spend the rest of my life with. The only problem with that is he found someone else to spend his time with. When I found out that he had cheated on me several times during our marriage, I knew that we were done. I can forgive a lot, but that is one thing I knew I could not get over. Eric M. Willie, P.C. in Austin is the attorney that I ended up hiring after looking over several different attorneys that were recommended to me.

I did not feel comfortable just picking one out at random without learning as much as I could, mainly because my husband had told me that if I left him, I would lose everything. He was talking about our house and vehicles along with the bank accounts, but I was thinking about our children. Continue reading

Hate Crime Or Assault And Battery? Video In Chicago Being Examined

teenagers in the Chicago area filmed and posted to Facebook LiveThe world was shocked when they saw the video of what four teenagers in the Chicago area filmed and posted to Facebook Live. Much more than your average “bullying” video, the content that was posted contained a mentally handicapped man being subjected to some of the most inhumane treatment that anyone could fathom.

President Barack Obama has maintained that since he took office, race relations have been strengthened and that blacks and whites in America share more racial harmony than any other time in American history. But what the media is telling us is something much different.

Many high-profile cases including white-on-black crime and police shooting allegedly innocent black men have surfaced, making entire cities explode with tension. The latest video differs only in one aspect from what people have been witnessing recently: the offenders were not white, nor were they policemen. They were four African-American youths displaying some of the cruelest behavior that the world has seen.

There is no doubt that the four teens were involved in assault and battery. Over the time that they held the disabled man hostage, they not only verbally assaulted him, but beat him throughout horrendous hours of torture. Only some of the incident was filmed and posted, but there is no argument that they abused the man and should be prosecuted for criminal assault and battery.

What is in question is whether what they did will be escalated to a hate crime. Since in the video you can hear racial slurs and the teenagers repeatedly calling the man’s race, out with distaste, it appears to many who saw the video that the man was taken hostage not only because he was mentally challenged, but because of the color of his skin.

The Attorney General has had no problem pressing charges against anyone who makes racist statements against African-Americans and the gay and lesbian community, but prosecuting a black person for a hate crime against someone who is Caucasian is not the standard.

The man from Crystal Lake, Illinois was beaten severely as the teens shouted obscenities about President-elect Trump. His mouth was covered with tape and his hands were bound with orange bands. The assault went on for over five hours and might have never been discovered if it wasn’t for the footage of the assault and battery going live on Facebook. The young man was found wandering aimlessly, clearly distressed and hurt when police picked him up.

no more racism

Not only were the obscenities directed at Trump, but the teenagers also made clear references to white people. The Chicago Police superintendent, however, has been very unclear about whether they are going to prosecute the teens on just the assault and battery charges or whether they would face prosecution for a hate crime.

Trial attorneys will see to it that a hate crime would carry a much harsher penalty and be a federal offense, instead of just an assault and battery charge. It’s reasonable to charge them with a hate crime not only because he was mentally challenged, but also because of the racial comments made. In either case, escalating charges to a hate crime will allow for the prosecutor to impose much stiffer penalties.

If it had been a white group of teens torturing a black man, especially if he were disabled, there would be no question as to whether it was a hate crime or not. The mere fact that an offender is white and the defendant black typically classifies it as a hate crime. If the young teens are not held to the same standard of conduct, there is a reason to question the entire definition of “hate crime” and why it exists if it’s only for certain people.

A hate crime is a crime perpetrated on someone because of their race, gender, sexual preference or anything else that makes them vulnerable. If being disabled and beaten by four other people due to the color of your skin is not a hate crime, then the entire prosecution label needs to be reexamined.

For now, organizations like “Black Lives Matter” and other groups are defending the actions of the youths as nothing more than violence against another person in retaliation for the injustices put upon black Americans. If we want to have equality in America, it would seem necessary that we see all colors, not just one, as being worthy of protection from prosecution by others.

What The Workplace Fallout Could Be If The Affordable Care Act Is Repealed

While few would make the argument that the Affordable Care Act has made healthcare better, stronger, and more accessible to the American public, there are some parts of the Act that have been undeniably beneficial for the public; things like preventing insurance companies from targeting pre-existing conditions and having your healthcare tied to your employment have benefited many across the board.

Affordable Care Act
Image source: nytimes.com

The ideal goal of Obamacare was that no one would be forced to remain with a job or position that they didn’t want to be, solely to keep their healthcare coverage. Obamacare was supposed to free the workforce from being pushed into labor to maintain health insurance. The problem is that many unintended consequences have come from the Affordable Care Act. Some may have been predicted, but some could never have been.

President Donald Trump stood at the podium during his campaign run and promised his supporters that he would repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act with another system for American healthcare. At the time, it sounded like a viable and simple option. But just as there was fallout with implementing Obamacare, there are likewise going to be many consequences for repealing and replacing it. Not only will overhauling the health care and insurance system affect access to medical care in America, but it will also change the face of the workforce and how it relates to healthcare coverage.

The idea behind separating health care from your job was that you could open up your own business, freelance, or partake in other, more flexible work arrangements without the fear of not being able to afford healthcare. Unfortunately, it has become a situation where not many can afford their healthcare anyway. Between increasing premiums and reducing job hours for small businesses to not have to pay the costs of their employees, the workforce and small business operations have been completely transformed.

Republicans are currently working on a way to overhaul a system that is simply unaffordable and which finds itself in free-fall, with rising costs and people having their premiums doubled and sometimes even tripled. Those who have opened up their own business or who freelance and are getting assistance from the government through the marketplace are worried that if they have to seek insurance without help, their hopes of coverage are all but nonexistent.

The problem is that there is going to be a population who isn’t going to be happy no matter how the health care coverage system works. Those who pay for coverage on their own and aren’t privy to assistance will likely see their premiums lowered, which will be a welcomed change. But those who are getting subsidized healthcare coverage might have their premiums raised and not be able to afford it. The whole thing is in chaos.

The healthcare system is in a terse place in history. While many enjoy government help, there are just as many upset that their high premiums aren’t getting them much of what they need. Their doctor and hospital options continue to decrease, medications are being denied and many insurance companies are opting out of the marketplace altogether or limiting coverage to the point that insurance is rendered obsolete because it doesn’t cover anything anyway.

Those who are considering leaving their current full-time position are still concerned that going out on their own might mean less coverage at a higher premium — if they can afford it at all. Some experts like an on the job injury lawyer LA, believe the Affordable Care Act is killing small business creation and making it more difficult for small businesses to exist. If the repeal couples employment with insurance again, the fear is that many will stop their entrepreneurship endeavors and go back to their full-time positions, which will have an impact on innovation in America.

 There is little doubt that no matter what happens to healthcare, things are going to change. Everyone is looking to the Trump Administration to untie things, lower costs and increase competition to make healthcare not only better and more innovative, but also to help the average American afford the healthcare system necessary to build a productive and happy society.