Just One Shot

There are many ways to make an easy buck these days. Viral YouTube videos, dog walking, donate plasma—liquid part of the blood that carries the red and white cells, or selling rare pictures of celebrity kids. Yes, that’s right, money can be made taking elusive photos of other people’s children. Well, that’s unless the ways intended to acquire these rare pictures consist of ambushing them after camping outside of their home masquerading as an auto accident lawyer.


What’s so wrong about that?


Well, for one, it falls within the lines of harassment. Other than that, though, California has decided to crackdown on the overbearing paparazzi by boosting penalties, fines, and jail time for the act. The bill was introduced by Senator Kevin de Leon of Los Angeles, who didn’t have go very far to find the support he needed. A-List celebrities, such as Halle Berry and Jennifer Garner, were among those who pushed hard for this bill to put in place in order to protect their children and loved ones. The bill not only protects the children of celebrities but, also, other public figures, judges and police officers.


Doesn’t the press have the right to take those photos?


Of course, The First Amendment prohibits the government from interfering with the printing and distribution of information, which includes photos. Though, the recent bill wasn’t put in place to disallow paparazzi and others from taking pictures, it’s to improve their actions on how they decide to capture such photos. There is an abundance of paparazzi these days. Pictures don’t sell as well as they used to because now anyone can get those elusive shots that tabloids pine so desperately for. So what does the paparazzi do? They try to get the even more elusive shot by any means necessary; whether it’s following people to their homes, place of business, or their children’s school just to get the career-altering shot that guarantees them an enormous payday.


Why don’t more people get involved with this profession?


It’s not even a profession worth getting involved in anymore since, also included in the bill, parents or legal guardians of the harassed child can sue paparazzi for damages and fees. Taking most of, if not all, that highly coveted payday. The paparazzi will always be okay, though. There are still another 49 states that have both celebrities and public figures for them to make money off of.…

Fighting Smoke with Smoke

VapeFor a while, smokers had believed there was a small loophole around being able to smoke in public indoor locations—Electronic Cigarettes, also known as E-Cigs, until recently. Some states and local governments are starting to crackdown on the sale and even the usage of the rising non-tobacco based electronic cigarette.


What exactly is an Electronic Cigarette?


Electronic cigarettes are battery-powered devices that provide inhaled doses of nicotine through a vaporized solution contained in cartridges inserted into the device. No smoke or combustion is involved, the device emits only vapor when used.


What are the laws being created to hinder the E-Cig?


So far, the law quickly being pushed around most states prohibits the sale of e-cigarettes to minors. New Jersey law prohibits the use of an e-cigarette at the workplace or any other indoor public place. California may create a new law that requires you to own a tobacco retailer license in order to sell e-cigarettes. Some places, including Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, have already banned the use of e-cigarettes in their buildings.


Why such the fuss?


There’s no definitive reason why these laws and regulations are being drafted and created to impede the rise of a documented successful smoking-reduction product. Maybe that’s the actual reason. The growth of a product, that contains ten times less nicotine than tobacco smoke, starting to deter longtime smokers and even new smokers away from the traditional cigarette may not be something that states and local lawmakers want to take place so they have to do what they possibly can to regulate its fast paced growth.


Other things to know about E-cigs


The Food and Drug Administration, known as the FDA, has not studied or released any guidelines on usage or risk regarding e-cigarettes at all. Which has played a pivotal role in the rising laws and restrictions being proposed and passed by lawmakers throughout the country.


However, like traditional cigarettes, e-cigarettes are somewhat expensive to purchase. Some people consider them to be mini hookahs, while others consider them to be a pain. Surprisingly enough, not many people, including smokers, necessarily like smoking of any sort indoors. Which has probably played another key role in the recent local and state restrictions of the product. Even through all the recent bumps, e-cigarettes continue to be a very lucrative business and a different path to quitting smoking altogether.…


Divided We Stand, United We get Evicted

After college, many find themselves exhausted, drained, and happy to have finally graduated. That’s until they realize they have school loans due soon and, in some cases, in need of an affordable place to stay. Many times they settle on finding themselves a roommate or two to split rent and other costs, such as furniture or luxuries like roller blinds, without totally realizing what they’re truly getting into.


How much trouble could a potential roommate be?


A lot, if you don’t screen them properly. Having a roommate means sharing your intimate space and life with someone. Creating a joint partnership to uphold your end of the tenant-landlord agreement. Roommates that violate or don’t adhere to certain rules put in place by the landlord cannot only get themselves evicted but you, the uninvolved party, as well. The landlord has the right to remove all tenants due to one tenant’s mishaps. One tenant being late or not being able to pay their rent is included in the eviction of all tenants. So try to find an ideal roommate that understands and knows how to take care of their responsibilities.


Ways to protect yourself


First and foremost, ask for a separate rental agreement so that you’re not confined or bound to any agreement where violations or evictions aren’t necessarily effected by you. Secondly, documenting everything helps any conflicts or issues with roommates or landlords if any shall occur. And, once again, screen your roommates. This point cannot be stressed enough. Ask them as many questions as possible pertaining to how their finances are, what they like to do, what are some of their habits, or what they potentially like in a roommate as well. This helps immensely.


What else should you know?


Read your rental agreement carefully and, possibly, have another trusted eye read it over as well so you have a full understanding of what you’re getting into. Pay close attention to how your security deposit is handled throughout the course of your stay, especially when living with a roommate. Roommates that leave before the rental agreement is over may not be subjected to some of the charges that can be deducted from a deposit. Though, legally, they’re still responsible for certain fees, if charged, well after moving out. So keep documentation and a steady knowledge about your living arrangement and rights when it comes to living with someone else under joint circumstances.