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Michael “AcidFluxUSMC73” Edwards
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So, tonight, I'm going by Sonic Drive-In, ordering a large Orange Slush, get home and add in some Absolut vodka, and then watch a little Doctor Who.
If you get the joke, +1 for you, my fellow Whovians.

So, today I was told on +Andrew Peng's post that I had to identify myself before making a public comment on a public post. No, not by Andrew. He was actually pretty cool about it. But simply by asking a question, and offering a comment (in a perfectly polite manner) to +Tina Wu, I was accused of being a 'stranger danger' by +Janis Li, which I felt was incredibly rude, and then +Jasjeet Dhaliwal implied that I shouldn't have commented because I didn't identify myself. Which was not only rude, but ludicrous.
Thankfully, Andrew has recently posted an explanation of how public posts on Google+ work. My recommendation would be for those people that do not want their comments to be pubic, or to engage in public conversations, to learn more about the functions and features of Google+.
I've posted in the past about how complaining about public commentary on your public posts is illogical. I did nothing wrong, and it was offensive to imply otherwise. I don't want to know Jasjeet personally. I really don't care about knowing any details of her life. Same goes for Janis and Tina, and even Andrew.
I'm not here to pry into your private lives. I'm here to engage in public conversations. If that's not something you enjoy, then I politely suggest you explore other options.

By the way, this is a public post, and comments are unlocked. So, don't expect me to complain if you share your opinion, and please be aware that EVERYONE on Google+ can read what you write. And that's the way it's intended.

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If you are a Zimmerman defender, read this article and educate yourself. I wrote something vaguely similar, But +Lucian Randolph was far more eloquent.
I have a somewhat different take on the Zimmerman shooting

This is going to cause arguments, but you know me. I don't really care. I'm going to stand up for what I think and believe is the right thing to do.

My attorney on gun matters actually wrote the book on gun laws in the state and I have had direct interaction with the police in Central Florida over the gun laws. In the past in Florida, and in general legally, self-defense would sometimes not be claimable if a method of escape became available or was available to the claimant during the altercation in question. This implied but not mandated duty to retreat would often cause confusion in the case of someone defending their home or property. The Castle Doctrine allowed for defenders to use force to defend self and property without needing or trying to escape the conflict. But that still left confusion on the issue of open self-defense in someplace that was not your home or property. The Stand Your Ground rule allowed you defend yourself (with deadly force if necessary) to protect your life and did not require you to try to escape or flee the altercation.

HOWEVER - no aspect or derivative of the self-defense claim is applicable if you start the argument, conflict, fight or altercation.

You do not have any right to self-defense if you are the one that starts the conflict. If you tell someone to do something and they refuse, and you subsequently start an argument, confrontation, conflict or fight – then you do not have the legal right to claim self-defense. This case was not about the Castle Doctrine protection of self or property defense because that applies to the person or property holder and cannot be transferred by assignment. Nor does the Stand Your Ground rule apply. The shooter in this case followed around the victim and then confronted him. At that point, the shooter stepped outside of his protected activities. The 911 dispatcher asked the shooter if he was following the suspect. When he answered "yes" the dispatcher immediately told him to stop following him and not to confront him.

The shooter had no right to confront anyone and tell them what to do even as a neighbor watching the community and the 911 dispatcher told him as much. You do not have the right to start a fight and then if you're getting your ass kicked, pull out deadly force and use it. That's not self-defense. If you create the conflict or start the fight, self-defense is only applicable for the other guy. The Stand Your Ground rule actually makes it irrelevant who felt threatened first or even who hit whom first. It only matters who initiated the conflict. Once the conflict was initiated, the Stand Your Ground rule allows for any escalation by the one who is reacting to the first conflict. According to the evidence in the 911 call logs, the shooter admitted he started following the victim. The 911 dispatcher told him not to follow or confront him. When the shooter confronted the victim, that was the initiation of the conflict.

This is an important detail. The direct personal conflict must precede the fear or threatened feeling that gives rise to the Stand Your Ground rule. Someone must be attempting to conflict with you first personally by physically getting in your face. If you are afraid and feel threatened but no one has initiated any type of conflict physically directed toward you personally, then you feeling threatened is not an issue or even applicable to the Stand Your Ground rule. This is why you cannot start a conflict and then claim self-defense in any way even if you felt threatened before the conflict. Feeling threatened without direct conflict is called paranoia. Paranoia is not protected by the Stand Your Ground rule.

If you are confused about this, consider the following examples. The Stand Your Ground rule does not give you the right to look across a field or street and say, "I feel threatened by that guy," and then pull out a gun and kill them. A direct initiation of conflict is necessary first or there is no connection to you feeling threatened. Also, the Stand Your Ground rule doesn't appy if you walk up in front of someone and start to curse or yell or argue until you cause them to hit you and then you pull out your gun and kill them. If you are the initiator of the first direct personal conflict, even if that is just getting in front of someone and arguing, then you are the aggressor according to the Stand Your Ground rule. Lastly, the direct personal conflict by physical confrontation is necessary and the trigger for the legal protection because the rule would not apply if someone was threatened over the phone and then they hunted down and killed the offender.

You must feel physically threatened for the law to apply, but if you threaten someone first, you can't claim self-defense if they threaten you back. This is why if you walked up to someone's face and told them you were going to kill them and then you reached into your pocket for a pencil and they shot you right there, the law would protect them, not you. You started the conflict and the escalation was a result. The Stand Your Ground rule only applies to the person who is not instigating the confrontation. That was actually the point of the law, to give the right to stop the initial aggressor. According to the law, the initial aggressor was the shooter because he started the conflict by following the victim and then approaching him. The shooter should be charged with killing him without justification, because nothing he has claimed changes the application of the law. He started the confrontation by following and approaching the victim and he broke the law when he did. He is not protected by the Stand Your Ground rule, because it is not applicable in the shooting.

The police who responded misapplied the Stand Your Ground rule and did not know the law. The police in Central Florida are some of the most sued departments in the state for malfeasance and corruption. It appears they lead the state in ignorance of the law as well.

Why you shouldn't depend on spellcheck
Marry hat hey lid tell lam, ids fleas woes wide has know
No errors found.

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Florida Castle Defense Law

I've heard a lot of misinformed ideas about how this law in Florida works. First, similar laws are in 44 states. The right to protect yourself, your family and your property is an inherent right.

However, the 'Castle Defense' law doesn't apply in this situation. Zimmerman's actions were extremely far outside of the parameters of the law. The very fact that he followed Trayvon any distance whatsoever is clear proof of this. The problem isn't the laws in question; it's the lack of proper procedure during the investigation, and the fact that Zimmerman was an (alleged) racist @$$hole with a gun. Unless you want to repeal the Second Amendment, this could have happened anywhere in America.

Zimmerman committed murder (or at the very least, manslaughter), not self-defense.

It seems to me that some opponents of the Second Amendment are using this as a rallying cry. Shame on you. How dare you use the death of this boy as part of your political agenda. The NRA and the Florida Legislature did not kill this child: Zimmerman did. And he did so in a manner that is outside of the law. He could have committed this same crime with any other weapon, or even done so with an illegally obtained firearm. Using this tragedy as political capital is appalling.

Zimmerman needs to be brought to justice. The police officers and the members of the State Attorney's that mishandled this need to be investigated. That should be the focus of this issue.
"It is apparent that my involvement in this matter is overshadowing the process," Lee told reporters, adding that it had become "a distraction from the investigation."

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When an old, white guy from Georgia supports Gay Marriage, the debate is over.

In all seriousness, I've always liked Jimmy Carter (I even did a 3rd grade book report on him, and dressed up as him, with my little suit and tie, a big smile, and peanuts to hand out to the class), even if I didn't always agree with all of his politics. I really like his clarification that the church and state should be kept separate on this matter, too.

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For everyone that compalins about 'opposing opinions' on your public posts... read this article. If you don't want public commentary, stop making your posts public.
This bears repeating. Privacy is important, and Google+ has great privacy controls. But you need to know how they work to use them to best advantage.

The first rule of privacy on Google+: people don't get any access to your info without you taking action. Relationships in G+ are "asymmetric", meaning you can "follow" someone ("adding to a circle", or "circling") without their having to reciprocate by circling you back. When you circle someone, the things they share you'd already be able to see anyway — because they're shared publicly or with a circle that includes you — will appear in your streams. But if you go to their profile before and after you circle them, you won't see much difference — circling someone doesn't give you access to their info.

At the same time, when you circle someone else, you are not only asking Google+ to put that person's shares into your stream, but you're also giving them access to things you share with your circles. For instance, if you edit your profile (the circle with a profile in the buttons up top of the G+ web interface), you can give people in your circles access to your email address or your phone number. Those are people you have added to your circles, not people who have circled you. (When you edit your profile, you can change the visibility of items by clicking the little icon next to each one.)

Similarly, if you enable G+ chat, when you click the triangle to the right of your name in the chat box (in the left sidebar of your G+ stream, not in Gmail) you can choose whether "Your Circles" can chat you, or a custom selection of circles. Note that those people must have also circled you and done the same; chat is obviously one case where reciprocity matters!

But if you've been paying attention, you'll notice that you circle someone for two different reasons: one, to see their shares in your stream, and two, to give them access to your info and/or chat. This makes sense most of the time; people you know are the people you want to hear from. But sometimes the two don't align, and when they don't, you need to know a couple of more advanced tricks, which I've taken screenshots of below.

First, not all circles are created equal. Some circles are ones you may use for celebrities or people you don't know but who publicly share interesting stuff. (A lot of people use the "Following" circle for that.) Maybe you want to get their stuff in your stream, but you don't want to give them any access to your info. No problem: go to and click "Customize" under "Your circles" (first screenshot). Then make sure only the circles you want to share with have the checkbox clicked (second screenshot). Now, when you see "Your circles", you know that really means "all my circles but the ones I unchecked here", and you're safe to add whoever you want to "just follow" to those unchecked circles without giving them visibility to things you want to share in a limited fashion.

What about the reverse case? Maybe you have business associates or acquaintances who post stuff you don't care to read, but you do want them to have the "always up to date" contact information in your profile (especially useful if they have an Android phone or use Gmail!) and/or access to chat you. In that case, put such people together in a new circle (I call mine "Contacts", because that's how I think of them). Make sure the circle is checked in the "Your circles" setting we just saw. Then go to your stream and click that circle's name in the lefthand sidebar (third screenshot). Now, at the top, you'll see a slider. Drag it all the way to the left (fourth screenshot), so it says "Show nothing from this stream in my main stream" (fifth screenshot).

Now you won't see this circle's shares unless you specifically go to this stream again, but since this circle is part of "Your Circles", they'll have access to the things you want to share with them.

(One final note: when you enable chat in G+, you have your choice between allowing chat from "Your Circles" and a custom set you select. This gives you even a bit more control. Maybe you don't want to be chatted by that guy you're following with the interesting but weird political opinions, but you'd just love it if your favorite celebrity were to respond to your insightful comment with a chat. It's your choice.)
Customizing circles (5 photos)
5 Photos - View album

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Wow... I just geeked out a little.

Scene: Photo printing store, where a customer has just been told that his labor- and time-intensive order will be available tomorrow.

"No, I don't want it tomorrow!! If I wanted it tomorrow, I'd order it tomorrow!!! I want it today, so I ORDERED IT TODAY!!!"

"Sir, it takes a minimum of four hours for the photofinishing chemicals to fully process this type and size of image (relevant info: 24" x 36", meant to look like an oil painting), and we close in thirty minutes. If I stay late and come in early tomorrow, I can have it ready by 8 a.m."

"You IDIOT! I need it for the party tonight!"

"What party?"

"My son's high school graduation party!"

"So, wait... you've had HOW long to plan this? Eighteen years?"

"Err... yeah..."

"I'm sorry, sir. Even if I could change the laws of physics and make a chemical reaction occur faster than normal, a lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part. The best I can offer you is a poster print in the same size, which I can have ready within 20 minutes. (I point to an example print that is less than two feet away from him)

"Yeah, fine, do it"

(15 minutes later, the poster is printed, and ready to go. I've even got a nice frame picked out that I'm planning on throwing in for free, since I feel bad for his son in this situation)

"Okay, sir, it's all ready! I also have a..."

"What the HELL is this? This looks nothing like THAT!" (pointing to our display advertisement of the faux oil painting, up on the wall, no where near the example I showed him).

"True, because that's the process that takes at least four hours. This is the printing process that's faster, which I suggested as an alternative, due to your time constraints. It's still a photo quality print, though. I think your son will be pleased."

"Fine, whatever, let me just pay. And you can put THAT back (pointing to the frame). You're not upselling me!"

I quickly collect his money. After handing him his change, I tell him this:

"Actually, sir I was going to include the frame for free, since I know you're pressed for time and I thought it would be a nice gesture. However, since you've been exceedingly rude during this entire endeavor, and I've done everything within my power to assist you, and at no point have you expressed any appreciation, I see no need to offer you anything complimentary."

"You incompetent idiot! I'll come back tomorrow and talk to the owner and have you FIRED!"

"Actually, sir, that will be a little difficult. You see, I AM the owner. That's one of the reasons I was able to offer you the complimentary frame, and also the reason I put up with as much of your abuse as I did. If you had spoken to any of my employees in this manner, you would have been ejected from my store within the first five minutes. In fact, the only reason I even offered to complete this job for you was because of the sympathy I feel toward your son, who has a father that waits until the very last minute to prepare a graduation gift. Now that it's done, I want you to know that you are not welcome in my store, ever again. I refuse to do business with someone that is so incredibly rude, especially when the situation was created due to their own incompetence. I hope your son has a nice graduation party. But the next time you find yourself in a bind due to your own failures, perhaps you won't be a rude, inconsiderate prick to the only person that can help you. Have a great night, sir."

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+David Röll asked "And why exactly should a Reverend's opinion get this type of exposure on a national news outlet? Especially on a subject he has no authority on (like medicine, ethics and morality)?"

Because he's a public figure and many Americans are interested in his opinion. Also, the 'national news outlet' has Freedom of Speech, and is using as they see fit.

I don't see the problem here.

If you automatically have a negative attitude about someone's commentary, simply because they are a religious person, then that's by definition a prejudice. Even if you disagree with someone, they still have the right to express their opinion. If you don't like it, don't listen to it. Walk away, change the channel, skip the post.

But even the people you disagree with have the same rights as you.
Would Jesus agree? put that question to a few theologians and religion experts, and the answer is … decidedly hazy.
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