Category: Animals

Virtually Insane: School Sends Police To Home After Child Shows A Clearly Fake Gun During Online Class

We have previously followed the suspensions and discipline of students under zero tolerance policies that are used by teachers to justify zero judgment or responsibility. I have long criticized zero tolerance policies that have led to suspensions and arrests of children (herehere and here and here and here and here). Now this insanity has gone insane after a Colorado school district called police because a 12-year-old boy flashing a clearly toy gun in his own home.  While the teacher told police the orange gun marked “Zombie Killer” was clearly a toy, the police went to the home of Isiah Elliot on a welfare check and the boy who has Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and learning disabilities was suspended.  Does that make sense as opposed to a simple call to the parents?

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Riotous or Racist? CNN’s Chris Cillizza Blasts President Trump For Using The Word “Riots”

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We have previously discussed how some media organizations told their journalists not to call violence after the death of George Floyd “riots,” including the recently much mocked headline of CNN calling the looting and violence in Kenosha “fiery but mostly peaceful.”  Now, Chris Cillizza, an editor-at-large for CNN, is under fire for criticizing President Donald Trump for labeling the violence in places like Kenoska as “riots.” Critics have noted that the picture posted by Cillizza with his tweet shows a building engulfed in flames.  Lawyers notoriously parse terms in ways that often deny their obvious meaning but this effort by some in the media would make a Philadelphia lawyer blush.

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Trump Moves To Approve Drilling In the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge Before Election

PolarbearoniceThis morning President Donald Trump just told Fox & Friends that he should go down as the “greatest environmental president” in history for signing the Great American Outdoors Act but he then proudly listed an array of rollbacks and attacks on environmental protections. If anything the President was understated in his damaging policies to the environment, including his opposition to efforts to deal with greenhouse gases and climate change.  What made this statement the most glaring for many of us is that this morning the Wall Street Journal disclosed that Trump is likely to open up the pristine Arctic refuge area to drilling — an act of breathtaking loss to our natural park and wild refuge areas.

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“This Man, If Nothing Else, Has Been Watered Down”: John Wick Reference Leads To Loss Of Cocaine

Roasted_coffee_beansSometimes flashes of wit or irony can be costly.  When a drug cartel in Medellín, Colombia decided to ship cocaine inside the shell of coffee beans, someone decided it would be funny to label the sender “Santino D’Antonio.”  Apparently, Italian police also like the John Wick series and recognized the name of the mafia boss from “John Wick: Chapter 2.”  The cost of the joke was the cocaine shipment and methinks there is a some avid movie lover in hot water with Medellín. To paraphrase the mafia character Santino D’Antonio, now “you have no [coke], no [beans], no [sale]. You have nothing. Vengeance is all you have left.”

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Trump Administration Sued Over Impact of Expanded Grazing Operations On Wolf Populations

Canis_lupus_layingI have often criticized the Trump Administration for its environmental policies from blocking climate control measures to rolling back on pollution regulations to developing pristine natural areas, including recent changes to hunting rules in Alaska.  Now the Forest Service is being sued over its failure on how expanded grazing operations are impacting gray wolf populations.  Given the ruling on DACA yesterday on the failure of the Administration to satisfy basic procedures requirements under the Administrative Procedure Act, this litigation will hopefully succeed in forcing a reevaluation of the operations of these private businesses on federal lands.

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Trump Administration Finalizing Rule To Allow Controversial Hunting Procedures In Alaskan Federal Lands

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U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

I have often criticized the Trump Administration for its environmental policies from blocking climate control measures to rolling back on pollution regulations to developing pristine natural areas.  The most recent change in hunting rules in Alaska however are truly disgusting. The Administration is finalizing rules to allow hunters in Alaska’s national preserves to shoot not just bears and wolves but their cubs and pups in their dens.  The policy change is horrific for many of us who cherish the environment and particularly the Alaskan parks and preserves. Continue reading “Trump Administration Finalizing Rule To Allow Controversial Hunting Procedures In Alaskan Federal Lands”

A Cereal In Wolf’s Clothing? New York Woman Sues Blue Buffalo Over “Inspired By Wolves” Claim and Content in Dog Food

We recently discussed the dismissal of the lawsuit by a woman who accused Dr. Pepper of false advertising for using the word “diet” after she failed to lose weight after 13 years of consumption. Now a canine version of the theory has been raised in New York where Shannon Walton is suing Blue Buffalo, a dog food company, claiming that it is misleading consumers about its dog food as “inspired by the diet of wolves.” Instead, she claims that dogs are wolfing down carbohydrates and that the closest her dog is getting to a real wolf is the picture on the package. She complains that her Tucker, a seven-year-old a Labrador-beagle mix, is diabetic and obese due to the high level of carbohydrates in the food. Warning graphic picture below.

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New Zealand Horrified By Videos Of Beachgoers Kicking Shark To Death While Laughing and Taking Selfies

We have discussed disgraceful attacks or abuse of wild animals from birds to squirrels to tortoises to rabbits to sharks in the past but few reach the level of reported savagery as this week in New Zealand where a shark allegedly was pulled from the water and kicked to death on a beach. Most of us cannot imagine wanting to participate in such an attack on a wild creature. Indeed, many of us travel hundreds or thousands of miles just to see these magnificent creatures in their natural habitats. Yet, there remain many people who get a sick joy in harming animals or watching such unspeakable scenes of cruelty. The most distressing element is to see children in some of these pictures. However, the one promising note is that there were people who sought to intervene to help the shark though they said that they roughly treated by the mob.

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A Few Pictures Of The Coast

By Darren Smith, Weekend Contributor

In response to this week’s unnecessary contentions on a personal and national scale I thought I would offer to the reader a bit of a respite and distraction. Here follow a few pictures of a journey I made to the coast, featuring the woods, lighthouses and a sunset.

Feel free to click on each image for a larger version. Enjoy…

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White House Honors K-9 Serving In al-Baghdadi Raid

By Darren Smith, Weekend Contributor

Earlier this week, a special four-legged hero named Conan was honored at the White House.

The military K-9 was injured in the October raid that led to the death of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in Syria. Fortunately, the commando dog has since made a full recovery.

This is not the first time that this breed of dog was used in a special operation. Back in 2011, a Belgian Malinois named Cairo accompanied Seal Team Six to track down Osama Bin Laden.

As predicted, some Americans are cashing in on Conan’s legacy as the war dog already has multiple Facebook pages, ‘Zero Bark Thirty’ t-shirts, and even held a press conference on SNL.

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Airline Cracks Down On Fat Cats

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Well, at least it does for one fat cat. Mikhail Galin, 34, was barred from taking his cat Viktor on board an Aeroflot flight from Moscow to Vladivostok because his cat was too heavy. Faced with a cat over the 17 pound limit and unwilling to put Viktor in with baggage, Galin came up with a clever idea. He got a thinner cat and checked in with it. After the substitute cat was weighed and approved, he swapped the cat with Viktor and tried to board. The problem is Galin boasted on social media and that consequently left him with an engorged feline and no flight pass.

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Wisconsin Man Arrested For Driving Intoxicated With Chicken On His Shoulder

According to WDJT, a Wisconsin man was pulled over by police after calls of a possible DUI driver with a hawk on his shoulder. Police pulled over Ernesto Martinez-Garnica and found a brown chicken in the car. The chicken was sober but Martinez-Garnica was not, according to police. The chicken’s name is Teresa.

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Great Danes Kill Ohio Woman

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This week, I taught (with our esteemed visiting Professor Luna) animal-related torts, including the “one-free-bite rule.” One question that came up in class was whether the size of the dog could be treated as knowledge of the vicious propensity of the animal. I explained that it did not correlate to viciousness and gave Great Danes as an example of a large but thoroughly gentle dog. Right on cue, a story ran that night of a woman in Ohio who was killed by her Great Danes. The case actually tracked some of the issues that we discussed in class with the notable exception of the breed commentary on my part.

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North Carolina Hunter Injured After Shooting Bear Out Of Tree

Dept. of Interior

I still do not get the thrill of big game hunters, but a case in North Carolina shows that even the most one-sided hunts can take a bizarre twist.

Two hunters used dogs to force a black bear into a tree so they could stand below and shoot it. The bear tumbled out of the tree but was still alive and chased one hunter off a small cliff in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The hunter suffered bites and other injuries.

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