We have another example of how copyright and trademark laws are being using to bully and stifle individuals or small businesses. In Beulah, Michigan, locals enjoy their Blue Caribou Cafe and its quirky dishes like Hypocrite Omelet (a vegetarian omelet with your choice of meat.) However, if Caribou Coffee Company has the final say, Blue Caribou may no more. You guessed it. Caribou Coffee appears to believe that it owns Caribou-themed restaurants.
Daniel in the Lion’s Den by Peter Paul Rubens is a painting that has inspired millions in capturing the moment of faith dedicated in the Bible. The same cannot be said about the scene this week in Santiago, Chile where a man stripped naked and jumped into the lion enclosure at the zoo in what is believed to be a bizarre suicide attempt. In order to save the man, the zoo was forced to shoot and kill the two lions. (Warning: disturbing video shot from YouTube below.)
There is a bizarre story out of Barcelona where people are engaging in activity called “sex roulette” where people have unprotected sex knowing that one of the group is HIV positive. For some reason, this adds an element of danger for such people in not knowing if they will contract a lethal virus. Putting aside the deeply disturbing psychological element, there could be some interesting legal elements for anyone who wants to sue. Presumably, this is the ultimate case of an assumption of the risk and plaintiff’s conduct as a defense. However, the party organizers could also be viewed as creating a type of ultrahazardous or abnormally dangerous activity. While defenses could still apply, the question would be law suited from family members or third parties.
We previously discussed the suspicious claims made by a gay Texas pastor, Jordan Brown, who accused a Whole Foods store of changing his order for a cake reading “Love Wins” to “Love Wins Fag.” Various people seeing the cake immediately began raising questions over Brown’s claims and a videotape seemed to contradict his account. Whole Foods countersued Brown. Brown has now fessed up that he did alter the cake and made the whole thing up. After he dropped his lawsuit, Whole Foods has decided to drop the countersuit though a strong case could be made for seeking damages in such a hoax.
By Darren Smith, Weekend Contributor
The family of a then fifteen year old girl filed a lawsuit against a Tacoma, Washington mall and its security contractor alleging a Tacoma Police Officer used excessive force during what plaintiff’s claim is an unjustified stop and arrest. Newly released security video shows in the opinion of your author a disturbing example of a law enforcement officer utilizing not only unjustified and unreasonable force, but disregard for even common decency and showing clear conduct unbecoming of a professional.
The incident was captured on surveillance video and shows what I believe is self-evident conduct likely to garner strong liability on behalf of defendants.
It is the classic tort and a virtual cultural icon: mailman versus dog. New figures show that this is not some cultural mythology. According to the U.S. Postal Service’s annual report, 6,549 postal workers were attacked by dogs in 2015. That is an increase of 14 percent from the year before so either dogs are getting more aggressive or mail carriers are getting slower.
There is a rather bizarre case out of Texas where Whole Foods was sued by Pastor Jordan Brown of Austin’s Church of Open Doors. Brown said he ordered a cake from Whole Foods meant to read “Love Wins” — a slogan associated with the movement to legalize same-sex marriage — but the store instead wrote “Love Wins. Fag.” The very notion of Whole Foods, an iconic brand for liberals, producing an anti-gay cake is news in itself. Indeed, Whole Food was initially apologetic and shocked by the news. That soon turned to a more confrontational and angry reaction after the store reviewed the security tape. The store has countersued and suggested that Brown added the offensive language.