April 21, 2015

"A New York judge has ordered state lawyers to justify why two chimpanzees living at a public university on Long Island shouldn’t be granted the same rights that protect humans from illegal imprisonment."

"Responding to a petition for a writ of habeas corpus on behalf of two young adult male chimpanzees, New York Supreme Court Justice Barbara Jaffe late Monday issued a brief order demanding the State University of New York at Stony Brook to explain why the animals shouldn’t be moved to a Florida sanctuary."
The Nonhuman Rights Project filed a petition last month on behalf the chimpanzees, named Hercules and Leo, arguing that they are “autonomous and self-determining beings” who should be “protected by the common law of habeas corpus,” a right granted only to “legal persons.” The chimpanzees are being used for locomotion research, according to the group.
 (Note: In New York, a "Supreme Court Justice" is a trial level judge.)

107 comments:

Rusty said...

Oh for the love of god.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Rusty said...

Oh for the love of god.

More likely for the love of Darwin.

n.n said...

But what about the plants? The lowly carrot. Do they not breath? Do they not reproduce? Are they not likeable and agreeable?

Trans-human equality is ascribing human qualities and privileges (i.e. anthropomorphization) to non-human lifeforms.

My guess is that while these activists support trans-human equality, they will selectively exclude human lives from the same treatment. It's a notable hypocrisy normalized through progressive confusion.

ken in tx said...

Efforts like this will drive animal research to third-world countries where humane treatment will be of little concern.

Real American said...

I don't want to hear anyone from these courts complaining that they don't have enough staff or funding to do their jobs. Sounds like they have too much of both.

YoungHegelian said...

I think we should appoint a porpoise to the Supreme Court. I'm sure that somehow the 14th A. can be pressed into service to make the case.

Robin Rhea said...

I fail to see how forcing an animal to live in a sanctuary is treating them like self-determining beings any more than forcing them to live at a research station. If the activists were consistent, they would require that the judge let them loose in downtown Manhattan...at least until they committed a crime, upon which time they could be tried in a court of law and sentenced to jail.

I Callahan said...

Where's iowan2's trenchant analysis?

Unknown said...

I see the opportunity for a whole series of discrimination law suits.

n.n said...

Ignorance is Bliss:

Darwin established principles of natural chaos through deductive reasoning. I don't recall if he conflated the logical domains: science, philosophy, faith, and fantasy. He was an omnivore. He was unlikely to be a source of anthropogenic confusion that would lead to equivalence of "clumps of cells". He or his contemporaries may have mischaracterized the evolutionary process based on personal prejudice, but did he promote his faith, or was he agnostic about matters outside the scientific domain?

As for the simians, they are lifeforms, and while they exhibit less degrees of freedom than humans, they should be treated rationally and reasonably until there is cause to do otherwise.

Rusty said...

Shock the monkey!

Todd said...

So chimpanzees should have more rights than pre-born humans? Got it.

Crimso said...

Wait until the chimps discover the 2nd Amendment.

Todd said...

Crimso said...
Wait until the chimps discover the 2nd Amendment.

4/21/15, 1:04 PM


I believe there was a series of movies that follow that story line...

Robyn BAILEY-ORCHARD said...

Shouldn't "proof" be as easy as a DNA analysis?

Robyn BAILEY-ORCHARD said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gahrie said...

Uhmm..because they are not human?

Paul McKaskle said...

If Justice Douglas has his way –
O Come not that dreadful day –
We'll be sued by lakes and hills
Seeking a redress of ills
Great Mountain peaks of name prestigious
Will suddenly become litigious
Our brooks will babble in the courts,
Seeking damages for torts
How can I rest beneath a tree
If it may soon be suing me?
Or enjoy the playful porpoise
While it's seeking habeas Corpus?
Every beast within his paws
Will clutch an order to show cause
The Courts besieged on every hand,
Will Crowd with suits by chunks of land.
Ah! But vengeance will be sweet
Since this must be a two-way street.
I'll promptly sue my neighbour's tree

Gabriel said...

If it's illegal to keep them in the university because they have human rights, then it is illegal to keep them in the sanctuary for the same reason.

DanTheMan said...

And just how, pray tell, would they empanel a "jury of their peers" should the free chimps commit a crime?

Anonymous said...

Give them full rights.

They'll be locked up in jail within 24 hours for assault and battery.

Richard Dolan said...

The order directs the State to respond to the petition, and is not a ruling on the merits.

These cases (there has been a string of them in NY) have been getting some coverage in the press here. The last paragraph of the article refers to another case brought by the same outfit (The Nonhuman Rights Group, an entity created by an attorney in NY), in which the Third Department (the intermediate appellate court in Albany) rejected a similar habeas petition for another chimpanzee. The appellate court reasoned that, since animals are incapable of conforming to legal duties and responsibilities (unlike humans), they also cannot be endowed with the legal rights and privileges accorded humans. The appellate court was also concerned that recognizing that some animals partake of 'personhood' sufficient to qualify for habeas relief would require that essentially all animals be treated similarly: 'If you win, does that mean we have to empty all the zoos' was one of the questions that the court asked the lawyer for the petitioner. (The Nonhuman Rights Group has been clear that, if they were successful with chimps, they would seek the same rights and status for whales, dolphins, etc.)

Presumably, this judge will dismiss the petition when she issues a ruling on the merits. If not, the appellate courts will undoubtedly fix it. If animals are ever accorded such rights, it will have to be by legislative enactment.

tim maguire said...

Real American said...I don't want to hear anyone from these courts complaining that they don't have enough staff or funding to do their jobs. Sounds like they have too much of both.

You can be pretty sure the court will dismiss this suit, but no matter how ridiculous it sounds, they still need a legally sound reason. They are demanding that SUNY do the legwork to develop that reason.

The alternative is for the court to do the research itself. Apart from that not being their role, it would require more resources than the court has. So your post is kind of ironic.

CarlF said...

I suggest that the chimp owners bring the chimps to the courthouse and let them loose. I wonder how long the judge would then take to determine that there are differences between chimps and humans.

Eric the Fruit Bat said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Julie C said...

Perhaps that woman who had her face ripped off by her friend's "pet" chimp can testify about her experience.

Gusty Winds said...

And a seven month fetus has no right to life...

Bryan C said...

Since the chimps are “autonomous and self-determining beings” I assume the Nonhuman Rights Project has obtained their formal consent to file this petition on their behalf.

But what about the cockroaches who live there? What of the bacterial genocides conducted daily using chemical agents like sodium hypochlorite, purchased with public funds? How can they be ignored?

tim maguire said...

CarlF said...I suggest that the chimp owners bring the chimps to the courthouse and let them loose. I wonder how long the judge would then take to determine that there are differences between chimps and humans.

In an ideal world, the judge's personal opinion would be irrelevant. It's the law that matters.

Bryan C said...

"You can be pretty sure the court will dismiss this suit, but no matter how ridiculous it sounds, they still need a legally sound reason."

How about the old reliable "lack of standing"? That works pretty well for Eric Holder.

Sebastian said...

Y'all are too negative and short-sighted. Let's be a little more generous to our furry friends.

I propose a compromise: we should give chimps standing and rights in our courts if we get the same in theirs.

Michael K said...

"Efforts like this will drive animal research to third-world countries where humane treatment will be of little concern."

Yes. A lot of pharmaceutical research has gone offshore and I'm sure that some countries are noticing this. California is suing for-profit colleges and will drive them from the state.

We don;t need no stinkin jobs !

hombre said...

SUNY Stony Brook should change its name to "SUNY Chimp Sanctuary at Stony Brook" because it is a well known fact that chimps in sanctuaries are not captive, but are free to depart at will.

In that event the chimps could stay in New York and vote for Democrats including Governors who appoint highly intelligent, by chimp standards, judges like this one.

DKWalser said...

The judge should be impeached. She has shown herself to be unfit for the job.

jr565 said...

why shouldn't chimps have same rights as humans? Um, because they are chimps?

jr565 said...

The amount of complete BULLSHIT that is being foisted on us by liberals is making my brain hurt from the stupidity on display.
I'm all for setting the chimps free if, in turn we can lobotomize the judge.

Fernandinande said...

I would think that “autonomous and self-determining beings” would just be let loose, since "moved to a Florida sanctuary" doesn't sound very self-determining.

hombre said...

Judge Jaffe has taken under advisement a second petition by animal rights activists asking that the chimps be granted the right to marry if they are required to stay in NY.

Drago said...

jr565: "The amount of complete BULLSHIT that is being foisted on us by liberals is making my brain hurt from the stupidity on display."

Cloward-Piven.

All day, every day.

Drago said...

Fernandinande: "I would think that “autonomous and self-determining beings” would just be let loose, since "moved to a Florida sanctuary" doesn't sound very self-determining."

And about 10 Million Floridians with strange Brooklyn-like accents cried out for Fernandinande's head.

jr565 said...

I had cats yesterday. But I realized that they had human rights so I dropped them off on the sidewalk to live as natural ferals.
Bye, cats.

Freeman Hunt said...

The main thing that I got out of this post was a mental image of a court staffed entirely by chimpanzees.

Chimp lawyers in fancy suits, one of them has glasses. Chimp judge in a robe, banging the gavel. Chimp bailiff walking in that chimp on two legs way with the uniform and the utility belt. Chimp jury, all kinds of outfits, lots of business casual. Intermittently nodding, head shaking, or clapping chimps in the gallery. Little chimp court reporter. Journalist chimps with flashing cameras. And, of course, a particularly mischievous looking chimp in an orange jumpsuit as the accused.

Freeman Hunt said...

I bet if a genius chimp designed a courtroom, the bar would be an actual bar, and the chimps could hang from it.

Anonymous said...

Shades of Justice Douglas's dissent (to which commenter Paul McKaskle alluded) in Sierra Club v. Morton, suggesting “the conferral of standing upon environmental objects to sue for their own preservation.”

jr565 said...

a Florida sanctuary? Are chimps indigenous to Florida? Why is a florida sanctuary any more valid as a place for chimps to live?

JackOfClubs said...

This motion is being filed on behalf of the chimps without their consent. The chimps did not hire the NRP to act on their behalf; when they can do that, I will entertain the notion that they have rights. If the NRP is presuming to act on their behalf because they are incompetent, the NRP needs to establish that it has legal guardianship. As a side note, I don't think moving them from one prison to another, however attractive the latter, is an issue of habeas corpus, but I an less clear on that point.

jr565 said...

""A New York judge has ordered state lawyers to justify why two chimpanzees living at a public university on Long Island shouldn’t be granted the same rights that protect humans from illegal imprisonment."

Why can't the lawyers simply turn the question on the judge and demand to justify why two chimpanzees living at a sanctuary shouldn't be granted the same rights that protect humans from illegal imprisonment?

jr565 said...

WHen stray animals get sent to the pound shouldn't habeus corpus apply? THe pound is imprisonment, and the streets where they roam their natural habitat.
It would be like forcing homeless people into shelters.

Gahrie said...

Why can't the lawyers simply turn the question on the judge and demand to justify why two chimpanzees living at a sanctuary shouldn't be granted the same rights that protect humans from illegal imprisonment?

Because chimps aren't human

Mrs Whatsit said...

Richard Dolan has it right: in New York practice, an order to show cause is not a ruling on the merits, just a direction to the other side to respond. It doesn't indicate which way the judge will rule.

The Nonhuman Rights Project has brought at least two prior cases like this in New York, both of which were dismissed by the trial courts. The Third and Fourth Departments of the Appellate Division (New York's mid-level appellate courts) affirmed the dismissals with written decisions at 124 AD3d 148 (2014) and 124 AD3d 1334 (2015) respectively.

I notice that whoever made the handwritten changes on the order to show cause -- usually the judge who signs it -- can't spell the word "electronically."

tim in vermont said...

Isn't the "Florida Sanctuary" nothing more than a concentration camp?

boldface said...

I wonder how the deposition of the plaintiff will go, and whether the judge will sanction the chimp for refusing to respond to questions.

Franklin said...

If a chimp gets human rights in New York, at what point can a baby get it?

Michael K said...

There is a lot of nonsense about how smart porpoises are because they have big brains. This has assumed the characteristic of an urban myth which slowly being debunked.

The findings sit uneasily with a growing campaign led by experts who claim that the mammals deserve the same rights as humans because of their apparent high level of moral sophistication.
Last year scientists made a bid to have dolphins reclassified as ‘non-human persons’, and said killing them should be treated as murder. But others believe we have allowed sentimental ideas about the species to cloud our judgment.


Porpoises have huge brains but have no frontal lobes where humans have intelligence. The motor cortex in porpoises is at the front of the brain. There is no "prefrontal" portion.

This is the same stuff we are seeing about intelligent chimps. There is at least one woman who is not convinced about chimps' intelligence.

Charla Nash spoke about the isolation she feels but added she was determined to get better regardless.
“I've never been a quitter,” she said.

And now, three years after her face transplant, Charla is even practising expressions so she can learn to smile again.

But she revealed that other residents at the American care home where she lives no longer go near her because of her appalling injuries.


Romantic idiots in the nature/enviro clique.

~ Gordon Pasha said...

A long time ago I was involved with this case, drafting a reply to the City of Covina's motion for summary judgement. Motion was successful but case the St James ended up getting another attorney when their lead counsel was called up in the run up to Desert Storm I. Too bad, we almost had a sweet deal for all concerned.

http://www.esquire.com/news-politics/a5609/chimpanzee-attack-0409/

BarrySanders20 said...

Because they are JERKS! Monkeys, chimps, and apes are jerky animal jerks. No rights not to be imprisoned.

Plus, if they didn't want to be in cages, they wouldn't have been caught.

Birches said...

Yes, You've Finally Made a Monkey Out of Me

Matthew Sablan said...

"Well, your honor, they're not human."

"Good point. Case dismissed!"

Carl Pham said...

I've always felt Larry Niven modeled the watchmaker caste of Moties on lawyers.

Wilbur said...

Any judge who would set this for further hearing needs to be removed from the bench instanter.

And the filing attorneys disbarred.

When I'm king, things'll be different.

Beldar said...

Don't overreact.

I'm not admitted to practice in New York and can't speak to its specific procedures. But the order linked from the news report Prof. Althouse linked looks to me like a very routine, very pro forma order, not any kind of decision, or even prediction of a decision, on the merits. It looks like what a trial judge would issue to require a defendant to file a response and get the ball moving.

Indeed, if I were a state trial judge afflicted with a bogus lawsuit like this one, and I knew that the defendants were likely to have capable counsel who'd present me with excellent briefing showing that it was bogus, I'd probably sign this sort of order.

In other words, this ruling is probably equally consistent with "I'm going to let the defendants brief me on why I ought to throw this out" as it is with "I think the plaintiffs really have a point here and they're likely to get these chimps all the same rights that humans have."

David said...

The Locomotion is a stupid dance, but seeing a tribe of chimps doing it would be totally worth it.

DanTheMan said...

Do LGBT chimps have the right to marry?
Isn't this just the first step down the road to chimp polygamy?

Anthony said...

Because they are frigging apes.

jr565 said...

I bet Ricky Gervais would agree with this judge.

jr565 said...

Dantheman wrote:
Do LGBT chimps have the right to marry?
Isn't this just the first step down the road to chimp polygamy?

If chimps are granted the same rights as humans should they not have the right to marry hunans?

jr565 said...

Interracial marriage would take on a whole new meaning.

Kohath said...

The shortest answer is:

- we released them
- they committed criminal acts within an hour because they're not able to understand our laws
- they were ruled not competent to participate in their own criminal defense
- they had to be locked up
- we decided to lock them up here

jr565 said...

As Beldar says, this isn't the judges ruling, merely the judges getting the ball rolling. So then we can place the blame on the plaintiffs in this case rather than the judge.
Still, when its over I wish the judge had the discretion to walk up to the plaintiffs and smack them for wasting his and our time.

cold pizza said...

Another Postcard with chimpanzees! by BNL. -CP

Mrs Whatsit said...

Beldar's exactly right.

The defendants in the prior two cases were private parties who would have had to hire attorneys to respond. This time, the defendant is the State of New York, so the Attorney General will respond. By signing the order to show cause, the court gets the benefit of arguments on both sides instead of having to base its decision on the one-sided presentation of the Nonhuman Rights Project. That's all it means.

AJ Lynch said...

Libruls are mentally ill so the judge's ruling is no surprise to me.

richard mcenroe said...

Wow.

If those chimps win Garage and ARM are set for life...

tim in vermont said...

Because they are frigging apes.

So are we. Still doesn't make them human though, or even non-human persons. I guess the legislature could do that. Then what? Would we have "Fugitive Ape" laws, for when apes escape to NY, where they must be freed by sending them to a prison in Florida? Would Florida have these same kinds of laws?

...

Pass me the joint again, I am just getting started...

retired said...

I want to see the apes testify in defense of the judge at her impeachment trial

Bob R said...

On the basic facts, I think Beldar has it right (unless someone wants to chime in with local knowledge about NY procedures.)

I think a key here is the phrase "long and controversial effort." That means there is lots of case law out there, all going against the Nonhuman Rights Project. Some newbie in the AG's office probably put the brief together in less time than it took to post all these comments.

On the other hand, NRP is probably contacting lots of rich little old ladies with dozens of cats and raising a ton of money on the strength of this legal victory.

Freeman Hunt said...

If fifty chimps will pretend to staff a courtroom and then do a conga line, they get to live in Florida.

EDH said...

Somewhere even Caligula is saying "WTF?"

But what if Caligula actually did plot to create Rome’s first equine official? According to historian Aloys Winterling, author of “Caligula: A Biography” (2011), insanity isn’t the only logical explanation for such behavior. In his book, Winterling makes the case that many of the emperor’s wackier stunts, including his treatment of Incitatus, were designed to insult and humiliate senators and other elites. By bestowing a high public office on his horse, then, Caligula aimed to show his underlings that their work was so meaningless an animal could do it.

In this case of the apes, it's about the judge displaying her moral superiority.

JackOfVA said...

The more interesting case will be a computer running artificial intelligence software that passes the Turing test.

Roughcoat said...

Border collies are smarter than chimps. You can point at something and the BC will look at what you're pointing to. Chimps can't do that. Border collies are cognitively superior to chimps in numerous other ways. See the National Geographic special on dogs. I think it's available free online.

Chimps. Ugh.

madAsHell said...

Wasn't this a Charlton Heston movie??

Big Mike said...

How about because chimpanzees are animals that are not particularly sentient and they have a pronounced tendency to rip women's faces off when upset.

The judge should sanction the lawyer for the Nonhuman Rights Project and recommend him or her for disbarment. Should stop these sorts of frivolous lawsuits.

Sam L. said...

Well, they'll get EBT cards and Section 8 housing, but shopping, using buses, getting a drivers license? Voting, no problemo.

Michael said...

I hope the chimps beat off in court.

jr565 said...

Lawyer: "chimpanzee 1, we are in court today to determine where you should be able to live and whether its wrong to keep you at a public university. or if you have habeus corpus rights like humans and thus having you stay there would be the equivalent of an illegal imprisonment. What would your preference be?"
Chimpanzee 1: Smears feces on wall

NorthOfTheOneOhOne said...

Who knows maybe one of them will end up as Hillary!'s running mate.

That way she might get a few votes!

sinz52 said...

This is nonsense.

U.S. law currently defines "person" as a member of the species Homo Sapiens, who came into existence by natural means (i.e., not cloning). Look it up.

And yes, that means that if E.T. or Sarek of Vulcan or Yoda were to land right here in America in a spaceship, since they are not human, they would NOT be considered persons and would NOT have any rights under our Bill of Rights. Legally, we could put Yoda and Sarek into zoo cages without their consent.

So to all you space aliens out there who are monitoring our radio and TV broadcasts from light-years away:

As far as we're concerned, you're no better than animals!

Terry said...

It was simpler in the Middle Ages.
A person was a being with the attributes of reason, emotion, and will. A human being was the offspring of two human beings, male and female.

sinz52 said...

CarlF: "bring the chimps to the courthouse and let them loose. I wonder how long the judge would then take to determine that there are differences between chimps and humans."

That depends on what kinds of humans this trial judge has had experience with.

Remember, I used to ride the New York City subway after midnight during the crime wave of the early 1970s. I would have felt safer with chimps riding in that subway car.

Fernandinande said...

sinz52 said...
This is nonsense.


Correct.

U.S. law currently defines "person" as a member of the species Homo Sapiens, who came into existence by natural means (i.e., not cloning). Look it up.

OK.

Person
"The term “person” shall be construed to mean and include an individual, a trust, estate, partnership, association, company or corporation."

Person
"In general usage, a human being; by statute, however, the term can include firms, labor organizations, partnerships, associations, corporations, legal representatives, trustees, trustees in Bankruptcy, or receivers."

Skyler said...

If I were the lawyer thus charged I fear that I would be held in contempt for my response.

Terry said...

"The animal rights advocates representing the animals hailed the judge’s decision late Monday to grant a hearing early next month as a watershed moment for their long and controversial effort to persuade courts to confer human rights on primates."

Under which theory of jurisprudence were the animal rights advocates representing the animals? The animal rights activists were representing themselves and their interests. The internally imagined self-interests of a chimp will forever be a mystery to human beings.

"The organization isn’t challenging the conditions of their confinement, but the confinement itself. In a petition last month, the group described the animals as “autonomous and self-determining beings” who should be “protected by the common law of habeas corpus,” a right granted only to “legal persons.”"

An animal has no concept of an autonomous and self-determining being.

The article has been updated to say that the judge did not issue a writ of habeus corpus.

Freeman Hunt said...

"The term “person” shall be construed to mean and include an individual, a trust, estate, partnership, association, company or corporation."

A chimp with a trust?! That's one fancy monkey.

Freeman Hunt said...

It's not rude to troll chimps because they can't read.

DKWalser said...

In other words, this ruling is probably equally consistent with "I'm going to let the defendants brief me on why I ought to throw this out" as it is with "I think the plaintiffs really have a point here and they're likely to get these chimps all the same rights that humans have."

The problem is this approach allows activists to impose costs on people who are engaged in perfectly legal activities the activists disagree with. This is not a proper use of the courts. The judge should have sanctioned the plaintiffs for filing a purely frivolous motion and should have asked the bar to consider disbarring the attorneys involved.

Until the courts start imposing pain on those who practice lawfare, this improper use of our legal system will continue to be rewarded. And, until the state legislature starts impeaching judges who permit such frivolous actions to go forward, judges will have no incentive to do their jobs in protecting the courts from inappropriate uses.

Todd Roberson said...

Good to know we're spending lots of time and effort sorting out all of these critical issues.

That way, when the Iranians detonate a suitcase bomb in the air over Chicago and in the subway in DC, the 95 million unemployed able bodied adults in the U.S. (each of whom is on the hook for roughly $1 million in unfunded liabilities taken out on their behalf) can take solace in the fact that 1) in Indiana we proudly serve everyone and 2) chimps have rights, too.

DavidD said...

How abou this: because they're not human.

Larvell said...

If they're autonomous and self-determining, let them file their own darn petition.

Terry said...

DavidD wrote:
"How abou this: because they're not human."

The essence of modernity is that nothing is sacred, and nothing is fixed, including the definition of "human being" and "marriage."
"Modern" just means "the way we think now". "Outmoded" just means "the way we don't think now."
About the only thing you can say that isn't modern is "this will be true a century from now just as it is today." In the case of same sex marriage, you can reduce the timeline to less than a decade.

Fr. Denis Lemieux said...

Yes, but the real question here is: will two male chimps be allowed to get married? And then the real question -- the question that is the most important of all in all of this -- is will each Republican candidate for president attend that wedding, and if not, why not?
Eyes on the ball, folks, eyes on the ball.

jr565 said...

If they are humanesque and have human rights then can they marry. Secondly, can a Christian baker refuse to bake a cake for the wedding ceremony?

Anonymous said...

When we get around to granting citizenship to pigs it could change the result in Iowa elections. There are ten times as many pigs as people.

CStanley said...

So basically the issue of personhood for chimps is above the judge's pay grade.

We should let the chimp's mothers decide.

Brando said...

I hate every chimp I see. From chimpan "A" to chimpan "Z".

You finally made a monkey out of me. I love you Dr. Zaius!

Unknown said...

Apparently following publicity, the judge removed the words "Habeas Corpus," although the defendant is still ordered to show cause why "Upon a determination that Hercules and L:eo are being unlawfully detained..."

Mrs Whatsit said...

Unknown, that's not what it means. You have to read the whole sentence, though granted it's an insanely long sentence. But once you plow through it, what it means is that the defendant is ordered to show cause why the chimps should not be transferred to the other facility, IF it is determined that they are being unlawfully detained.

I don't mean to defend the judge, necessarily, but truly this is not a determination of the merits of the claim. An Order to Show Cause like this is a perfectly normal and ordinary part of New York legal practice, it's just a way of starting certain kinds of legal proceedings, and a signature by the judge does nothing more than force the other side to show up and make opposing arguments to help the judge decide.

Of course the illogic of the claim is self-evident -- if the chimps are being unlawfully detained, they should be released, not just transferred into a different unlawful detainment. And the fact that everyone knows they can't actually be released, and not even these loons are asking for that, means that even these loons understand that chimps aren't actually autonomous beings who can live on their own in society, and that their fundamental argument is false. That's what the courts have been telling them and will keep telling them, but it won't make them stop. They're like PETA. Their fundamental objective is to get attention for themselves and funds for their cause, not to help the chimps. If they actually believed that the chimps were being wrongfully detained and wanted to help them, they'd be in the legislature lobbying for laws that mandated more humane conditions of confinement, rather than raising meaningless and inherently futile -- but noisy and attention-getting-- quests in the courts.

Terry said...

I think it would be great if the animal lovers got there wish, but when they got back to the monkey cage one of the chimps had murdered the other.
It would make the Tsarnaev trial look like small potatoes. How do you even get jury together?