Grandma goes to jail for slapping cussing granddaughter in Florida.

In what is sure to be painted by the religious far right as another sign of how America is going to hell in a hand basket, 73-year-old Theresa Collier was arrested in Florida for slapping her potty mouthed granddaughter:

Collier says she invited her 18-year-old granddaughter, Felicia Collier, to her house so she could use her computer to do homework.

Felicia is finishing her senior year online after getting kicked out of Catholic school in Massachusetts, Collier explained.

“She said F-off to a nun!  I would just crawl into a hole,” said Collier.

On Tuesday, the newly turned 18-year-old did not want to obey her commands to complete her assignments.

“She kept repeating the F-word to me, about the whole family.  She just went on and on and I just got so upset, I got up and slapped her across the face,” she told 10 Connects, “She grabbed my wrists and I couldn’t get out of it and she let one go and she punched me in the cheek here.”

Sounds like Grandma and her granddaughter didn’t spend much time together as it was. She seems to be somewhat surprised by the girl’s actions so that suggests she doesn’t really know her.

Anyway, the granddaughter called police who showed up and promptly arrested the Grandmother for battery despite the young woman pleading with them not to do so and she spent the next 24 hours in jail.

“I went to medical, they take my blood pressure, it was sky high and he says, my God!  And I said, ‘Can you blame my blood pressure?’ ” said Collier.

“My wife of 52 years went to Catholic Parochial school, went to church, she’s a good strong Catholic and raised four kids and no one ever spoke to her like that,” said her husband, Walter Collier.

Well, someone has spoken to her like that now. I suggest she either gets used to it, learns to restrain her slappy impulse, or doesn’t hang out in Florida too much.

Because as it turns out, dear Grandma is a victim of the rule of unintended consequences. Here, I’ll let the police explain:

While Collier’s arrest seems out of line, under the law, a battery was committed.

“Legally she’s 18-years-old, so while I understand the difference between corporal punishment on a child, disciplining your child for using poor language, this is an 18-year-old child,” said Lt. Mike Loux, with the Largo Police Department.

Lt. Loux says his department has a mandatory arrest policy when it comes to domestic violence calls, so someone had to go to jail.

“If an officer on scene finds probable cause to arrest a person, because they’ve committed domestic battery, then our policy is a mandatory arrest of that person,” said Lt. Loux, “The discretion does not come because the victim does not want to prosecute.  It doesn’t come because the victim has remorse for calling police.”

In short, the kid isn’t a kid as far as the law is concerned and if you go around slapping adults you can and will be charged with battery and if it looks even remotely like domestic abuse in Florida that particular police department will haul your ass in and charge you. It’s that whole zero-tolerance policy showing what a bad idea it is once again. The police don’t have the option of discretion without violating the policy and the unwillingness of the victim to press charges is not enough to keep them from being applied. Which makes sense as it’s often the case in domestic abuse situations that the victims are unwilling to press charges.

The article appears to be painting this as an example of the police overreacting to a spoiled brat getting what she deserves, but if you look at it logically it went down the way it was supposed to when you take the power of discretion away from the police. It’s a reminder that it’s important to consider the rules and laws you set up before you enact them.

Should Grandma have the right to slap a mouthy grandchild? Lots of people seem to think so, but in this day and age of greater awareness of domestic abuse you could find yourself on the wrong side of the law if you do. Best not to associate with them if you don’t like their attitude.

Man arrested for breath mints spends 3 months in jail.

Donald May of Florida was driving home one afternoon when cops pulled him over ostensibly for expired tags and then things went downhill fast:

May was pulled over for an expired tag on his car. When the officer walked up to him, he noticed something white in May’s mouth. May said it was breath mints, but the officer thought it was crack cocaine.

“He took them out of my mouth and put them in a baggy and locked me up [for] possession of cocaine and tampering with evidence,” May explained.

The officer claimed he field-tested the evidence and it tested positive for drugs. The officer said he saw May buying drugs while he was stopped at an intersection. He also stated in his report May waived his Miranda rights and voluntarily admitted to buying drugs.

May said that never happened.

“My client never admitted he purchased crack cocaine. Why would he say that?” attorney Adam Sudbury said.

That’s a pretty good question. It’s also curious that the officer says he saw May buy the drugs when he originally said he pulled him over due to expired tags. Still, it shouldn’t take long for things to get straightened out, right? I mean it was breath mints. That should be pretty easy to establish in short order.

Of course not. Don’t be silly. Most crime labs have a backlog to contend with. So they tossed May in jail, where he was unable to raise bond, so he sat there for three months until the crime lab was able to confirm that the candy was just candy. In the meantime his life went to hell as a result:

“While I was sitting in jail I lost my apartment. I lost everything,” he said.

While May was behind bars, the Kissimmee Police Department towed his car and auctioned it off. He lost his job and was evicted. Now May is suing the city for false arrest and false imprisonment. He wants to be compensated for the loss of his car and job.

In short the Kissimmee Police Department ruined this man’s life over fucking breath mints. This is what the “War on Drugs” has come to. You can be arrested on mere suspicion, held for months until the crime lab gets around to examining your evidence, and the police can happily sell your car while you’re rotting in jail. That last fact galls me to no end. The forfeiture laws in this country are ridiculous. At the very least you should have to be convicted in a court of law before any forfeiture of property to the police is allowed.

Jesus. He’s what’s for breakfast.

He’s at it again. Ever the attention whore Jesus has decided to show up on a South Florida man’s toast:

Troy Eckonen was eating breakfast at Mack’s Cafe in Pompano Beach last Tuesday when he spotted Jesus’ face on his last piece of French toast.

After studying the toast Eckonen says he and friends also see Christ’s left arm raised and holding a cross, as well as two birds over the left shoulder.

Looks more like Frank Zappa to me.

Florida Republican politicizes 9/11 on anti-Democrat billboard.

Florida resident and musician Mike Meehan is a complete douche bag and here’s why:

Click to embiggen.

The man behind the billboard is Mike Meehan, a St. Cloud businessman and musician. His website advertises a CD and music video titled “The Republican Song,” with the chorus, “Don’t vote for a Democrat.” He’s selling CDs for $5.

“This is a blatant exploitation of that terrible tragedy for political and, perhaps even worse, personal gain,” said Bill Robinson, Orange County Democratic Party Chair.

Orange County Democrats are calling for the billboard to come down and the local Republican Party has said the ad is “inappropriate.” Meehan hadn’t returned Channel 9 calls or e-mails Monday afternoon, but some are defending his right to free speech.

“They can have their opinion. It’s a free country, if they want to pay for the ad. I’m sure it’s expensive,” resident Louis Champeau told Eyewitness News.

The company that owns the billboard, Beech Outdoor Advertising, views it as a fundamental first amendment issue and for that reason wouldn’t censor the ad. The billboard will be up until after the November election.

I agree that he has every right to put the billboard up and I have every right to call the man a douche bag for doing so. I suppose if there’s one positive thing about this situation is that it gives everyone a chance to exercise their right to free speech.

God helps man invent car that runs on water.

Looks like we won’t have to worry about gas prices for much longer. God has graciously provided us with an alternative means of powering our cars:

‘Water-Running’ Car Gets 100 Miles To The Ounce, Inventor Says – Orlando News Story – WKMG Orlando

JACKSONVILLE, Fla.—A Florida man has created a car he claims runs on tap water.

“I’m getting 100 miles to the ounce on water,” inventor Anthony Brown said.

Brown said he shut his fuel injection system down and created the system that can use any type of water with a small amount of gas. He said the car is getting just fuel vapor.

“When you separate the water from the oxygen from the hydrogen, it cooks and it cooks down to a brown,” Brown said. “We’re not having any waste product off of it. Everything is consumed and burned.”

Local 6 showed video of Brown filling up his vehicle with water and then driving around.

Brown said any profit he makes from his invention will go toward helping missionaries around the world.

“I’ve just been asking for a way, for the Lord to show me to raise money rapidly and I started to working on this idea,” Brown said.

No, I don’t think he’s a total nutball. Why do you ask?

OK, I’m lying. I really do think he’s a nutball.

Florida Senate passes misnamed “Academic Freedom Act.”

Seems they have a few IDiots in the Florida Senate that are hoping to have the non-theory of Intelligent Design taught in schools. After recent revisions by the Florida board of education put in place a stronger emphasis on teaching the theory of evolution the politicos sprang into action:

TALLAHASSEE, FL—Teachers are one step closer being able to openly criticize the theory of evolution in the classroom.

In a vote of 21 to 17, Florida’s State Senators adopted the evolution education bill, also known as the “Academic Freedom Act.”

[…] One subject facing scrutiny is the in-depth teaching of evolution.

State Senator Ronda Storms sponsored the legislation that would allow teachers to teach theories that contradict the theory of evolution.

The problem, of course, is that there aren’t any legitimate theories that contradict the theory of evolution. Intelligent Design certainly isn’t a theory as it makes no predictions nor does it contribute anything to science. It’s just a security blanket for people hung up on an ancient work of fiction who don’t like their cherished beliefs being crushed by reality.

The sad part is Florida is one of the states we had considered as a possible destination if the economy in Michigan continues to blow chunks. Anne could probably land a teaching job and word has it there’s plenty of technical jobs around Orlando and Tampa. If the winds of fate do end up blowing us that way then at least I can take comfort in the fact that Courtney will have graduated from high school by then.

People get their panties in a twist over atheist billboard.

The True Believers™ down in Florida are suffering fainting spells over a billboard ad that declares all religions to be fairy tales:

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla.—It looked harmless enough, but the words on a billboard unnerved so many people that a popular restaurant nearby actually lost business. The billboard was on Colonial Drive near Old Cheney Highway.

Although the popular Straub’s Seafood restaurant often advertises on it, it wasn’t their billboard. The sign was taken down after Channel 9 started asking questions.

The billboard came down around 4:00 Friday afternoon and nearby business owners are relieved. Straub’s Restaurant can replace the sign with the night’s specials.

At first glance, the sign looked like a children’s cartoon, but the message next to the fairy princess stirred emotions.

“When you condemn all religions and say they are a fairytale, that is wrong,” said Rich Stormes, a nearby business owner.

Oh my goodness! Someone get the smelling salts! I think poor Mr. Stormes is about to have a case of the vapors! Fair warning! I’m including a copy of this terrible abomination immediately below! You may want to have small children and women leave the room before you look at it!

Click to embiggen!

The billboard went up a week before Easter and business at the restaurant went down.

“Easter Sunday is usually a busy good day,” said John Russel, an employee at Straub’s. “Easter Sunday business was down by two-thirds.”

Since the sign is so close, John Russel’s customers thought the restaurant paid for the billboard. To clear any confusion up, Russel put up a sign of his own and called MediaNet, the company who owns the billboard.

“It’s been causing us some problems. I think it’s causing a bit of controversy city-wide. People have been contacting the media,” Russel added.

I can at least sympathize with the business owner here. If folks were misconstruing that it was put up by his business when it wasn’t and business has dropped off since it went up as a result, well, I can’t really fault the guy for being upset about it. Still, I find the whole situation pretty funny.

For their part the company that owns the billboard claims it’s an illegal posting that was put up in the dead of night which is why they took it down. The local business owners don’t really buy that argument, but I suppose it is a possibility that can’t be ruled out short of some group coming forward and claiming they paid for it.

This was sent in by several people over the weekend.

Failing at educating their kids, Floridians turn to prayer.

The state of Florida has a reputation among some people as being full of brain-dead morons. News stories like this Orlando Sentinel article do nothing to change that impression:

When Evans High School students bend their heads to take the 2008 Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test, dozens of community members will bow their heads, too—in prayer.

A group of about 40 churchgoers hopes that God’s power will do what studying has not for the struggling Pine Hills school: raise its state-issued letter grade above the F it received the past two years.

“Once you’ve done all you can do, you put it in the Lord’s hands,” said the Rev. Michael Kimbrough, pastor of Rising Sun Baptist Church in Pine Hills, who is organizing the prayer chain.

Florida has been in the news recently as the state Board of Education debated over new science standards that would require teaching the Theory of Evolution for the first time (it wasn’t a requirement previously). Around a half-dozen local school boards had folks pushing to have Evolution banned and/or ID/Creationism inserted into the science curriculum. Is it any wonder then that when faced with schools not making the grade the solution some folks come up with isn’t to improve the quality of the education, but to throw up their hands and declare they’ve done everything they can do and it’ll take a miracle from God to keep their kids from being total idiots?

Every now and then someone asks me, “What’s the harm in letting people believe what they want to believe?” I’d say the above is at least one very good example of the harm.