Posts Tagged ‘baseball’

February 20 roundup

  • Trucker-friendly Arizona legislature declines to ban naked lady mudflaps [; Houstonist]
  • Crumb of approbation dept.: I’m “[not] as unreasonable as most of the tort-reform crowd” [Petit]
  • Sponsors of large banquets in D.C. must pay to have a paramedic on hand even when the banquet crowd consists of doctors [ShopFloor]
  • Homeowner’s insurance doesn’t cover homewrecking: umbrella policy doesn’t create duty to defend lawsuit claiming the insured broke up someone’s marriage (Pins v. State Farm (PDF), S. Dak., Mayerson via Elefant)
  • New York mag on RFK Jr.: Is there some law saying all press profiles of America’s Most Irresponsible Public Figure® must be weirdly softball in nature and glide over his embarrassing book and rants, his Osama-pig farm lunacy, his anti-vaccine humbug, his trial-lawyer entanglements and even the wind farm flap?
  • Australia court rules Muslim prison inmate suffered discrimination and deserves money for being served canned halal meat rather than fresh [The Australian]
  • High medical costs and their causes: am I listening? [Coyote]
  • Economists may puzzle their heads over the ultimate incidence of business taxes, but in Wisconsin it’s whatever Gov. Jim Doyle says it is [Krumm via Taranto]
  • Feds may punish Red Sox pitcher Matsuzaka for doing a beer ad in Japan, where it’s perfectly legal for athletes to appear in such [To The People]
  • Guns in company parking lots: still one of the rare issues where the ABA manages to be righter than the NRA [AP/; see Apr. 6, 2006]
  • Thanks, NYC taxpayers: Brooklyn jury awards $16 million against city in case where drugged-up motorist jumped sidewalk and ran over pedestrians, later blaming the accident on a city sanitation truck [seven years ago on Overlawyered]

“Plaintiff strikes out in lawsuit over Angels bag giveaway”

“A judge tossed out a sex and age discrimination lawsuit Thursday against Angels baseball that claimed thousands of men and juveniles were wronged during a promotional giveaway at a Mother’s Day game. The gift – a red nylon tote bag – was offered free only to women age 18 and older.” (Erik Ortiz, Orange County Register, Feb. 2; Lex Icon, Feb. 1). For more on the action by attorney Alfred Rava and his client Michael Cohn, see May 11, May 23, and Aug. 19, 2006.

November 7 roundup

  • My informal debate with Professor Silver over the effect of reform on physician supply continues. [Point of Law; Silver]
  • If you’ve been intrigued by Professor E. Volokh’s idea of medical self-defense (and thus payment for organs) as a constitutional right, he’ll be discussing it with Richard Epstein and Jeffrey Rosen at AEI. [Volokh; Harvard Law Review @ SSRN; AEI]
  • Peter Wallison on how over-regulation and over-litigation is killing American competitiveness in the capital markets. [Wall Street Journal @ AEI]
  • Press coverage is finally starting to break through in the Milberg Weiss scandal with a lengthy Fortune profile. [Point of Law]
  • Economists and scholars file Supreme Court amicus brief calling for federal preemption of state “anti-predatory lending laws” in important Watters v. Wachovia case. [Zywicki @ Volokh; CEI]
  • One-sided coverage by the New York Times on the issue of web accessibility for the blind. Earlier: Oct. 27; Feb. 8. [New York Times]
  • Deep Pocket Files update: MADD tries to intervene in stadium vendor case where appellate court tossed $105 million verdict because of unfair trial. See Aug. 4 and links therein. [New Jersey Law Journal]
  • Lawsuit: my dead father’s baseball card mischaracterizes his nickname. [Lattman]
  • Lawsuit: I have legal right to the letter W. [Times Record News via Bashman]
  • Samuel Abady and Harvey Silverglate on libel tourism. [Boston Globe via Bashman]
  • Another roundup of Justice Robert Thomas libel lawsuit stories. [Bashman]
  • $15M Minnesota verdict blaming a delayed delivery for cerebral palsy, despite evidence it was caused by an unrelated infection. [Pioneer Press]

Jack Thompson, officer of the court

When anti-videogame crusader and perennial Overlawyered favorite Jack Thompson (Sept. 26, Oct. 15, etc.) lost his case over “Bully”, he dashed off the following letter to the judge who ruled against him:

Dear Judge Friedman:

Now that you have consigned innumerable children to skull fractures, eye injuries from slingshots, and beatings with baseball bats, without a hearing as to the danger, let me tell you a few things, with all respect for your office and with no respect for the arbitrary way in which you handled this matter. I can handle an adverse ruling by a judge. I’ve had plenty of those in my lifetime, and that’s fine. But the way you conducted yourself today helps explain why a great Dade County Judge, the late Rhea Pincus Grossman, could not abide you. She was not the only one . . . .

Next time you promise a “hearing,” I’ll bring a parent with me whose kid is in the ground because of a kid who trained to kill him or her on a violent video game. Try mocking that person, I dare you.

Full text of the letter here courtesy GamePolitics; via Lat who got it from ACSBlog. And a commenter at ACSBlog writes:

Jack Thompson did his part to inspire me to go to law school. I knew that if people of his mental capacity could succeed in the profession, I certainly could.

More: reports that lawyers for the game company are seeking to have Thompson held in contempt of court (further update here; h/t RebeccaFrog).

Obesity, disabled rights and the EEOC

In case you imagined that the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission these days was all sweetness and reason with employers in enforcing anti-discrimination law, check out Baseball Crank’s analysis (Sept. 12) of a new Sixth Circuit case, EEOC v. Watkins Motor Lines (PDF). Watkins Motor Lines hired Stephen Grindle, who then weighed 340 pounds, as a driver/dock worker:

Approximately 65% of his time was spent performing dock work including loading, unloading, and arranging freight. The job description for this position notes that the job involves climbing, kneeling, bending, stooping, balancing, reaching, and repeated heavy lifting.

Grindle continued to gain weight, hitting a high of 450 pounds.

In November 1995, Grindle sustained an on-the-job injury. He was climbing a ladder at the loading dock and a rung broke. He started to fall and caught himself but, in doing so, he injured his knee. …

[In 1996 an industrial clinic doctor, Dr. Walter Lawrence,] found that Grindle had a limited range of motion and that he could duck and squat but he was short of breath after a few steps. Dr. Lawrence also noted that “[o]n physical examination, the most notable item is that the patient weighs 405 lbs.” Dr. Lawrence concluded that, even though Grindle met Department of Transportation standards for truck drivers, he could not safely perform the requirements of his job.

So the company let him go, he sued, and the Sixth Circuit has now upheld the dismissal of his suit on summary judgment, not on the grounds you might think (that the grounds for his dismissal were obviously rational) but rather on the grounds that morbid obesity, when not caused by a physiological disorder at least, is not an “impairment” under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Michael Fox at Jottings of an Employer’s Lawyer also comments (Sept. 12) as does lawprof Sam Bagenstos (Sept. 12).

Second Circuit nixes teacher-competence test

In a case entitled Gulino v. New York State Education Department, the federal appeals court earlier this month “reinstated a race discrimination suit against the New York State Education Department based on the theory that a test of ‘basic college-level content’ that asks applicants to get just two-thirds of the questions right is racially discriminatory because it has a ‘disparate impact’ on African-American and Latino teachers.” Dan McLaughlin at Baseball Crank acknowledges that the court relied on existing Supreme Court precedent, but is still rubbed the wrong way by its assumptions (Aug. 31).

Update: Mother’s Day stadium promotion

An Orange County, Calif. judge has refused to dismiss attorney Alfred Rava’s lawsuit (May 11, May 23) claiming that the baseball Angels and a game sponsor “discriminated against men by giving tote bags to only women during a Mother’s Day baseball game”. (“Judge refuses to dismiss discrimination suit against Angels”, AP/San Francisco Chronicle, Aug. 17). P.S. More from the Boston Globe, Aug. 22.

“The timorous may stay at home”

John Caher in the New York Law Journal discusses the views of Benjamin Cardozo on assumption of risk:

Assumption of risk in cases arising from athletic or recreational activities is a principle that has been part of New York law at least since 1929, when in Murphy v. Steeplechase Amusement Co., 250 NY 479, Chief Judge Benjamin N. Cardozo said that one who “takes part in … sport accepts the dangers that inhere in it so far as they are obvious and necessary.” That case involved a plaintiff who fell from an amusement park ride called “The Flopper” and suffered a leg injury.

“Nothing happened to the plaintiff except what common experience tells us may happen at any time as the consequence of a sudden fall,” Cardozo wrote in reversing the Appellate Division, 1st Department. “Many a skater or a horseman can rehearse a tale of equal woe… . One might as well say that a skating rink should be abandoned because skaters sometimes fall.” He added: “The timorous may stay at home.”

(“Panel Rules Hurt Olympic Skater Assumed ‘Inherent Risk’ of Sport”, May 1). Declarations and Exclusions (Apr. 7) and Rick Karcher (May 22) have more on some recent assumption-of-risk cases in California, including a 6-1 decision by the state’s high court ruling that a college baseball player could not sue over a “bean ball”. See Mike McKee, “Calif. Supreme Court: Ballplayer Can’t Sue for Bean Ball”, The Recorder, Apr. 10.

Baseball club to hold “Frivolous Lawsuit Night”

From a May 17 news release by the Eastern League Altoona Curve:

ALTOONA- Inspired by a Los Angeles Angels fan who filed a lawsuit against the club because he did not receive a red nylon tote bag as part of the major league club’s Mother’s Day promotion last May [see May 11], the Altoona Curve have announced that they will be holding Salute to Frivolous Lawsuit Night as part of their Sunday, July 2nd game at Blair County Ballpark.

The Curve’s salute to all ridiculous lawsuits ever filed will include the following:

* A Pink Tote Bag Giveaway to the first 137 men in attendance ages 18 and over

* The first 137 women 18 and over will receive lukewarm coffee so they will not burn themselves [see Oct. 20, 2005]

* The first 137 kids will be given a beach ball with a warning not to ingest it

* Angels merchandise and novelty items given away throughout the game

* Honoring some of history’s “Most Frivolous Lawsuits” during the game

A grand prize drawing in which one fan will receive a “clue” and their own frivolous lawsuit.

Read On…

Baseball stats, cont’d

Updating our Apr. 12, 2005 post: Does it violate the rights of Major League Baseball when the rest of us conduct “fantasy baseball” leagues employing the names and statistics of actual players? A lawsuit making such contentions is now heading, notes Ron Coleman (May 17), “into the bottom of the ninth”. (Alan Schwarz, “Baseball Is a Game of Numbers, but Whose Numbers Are They?”, New York Times, May 16; Legal Fixation (IP blog); Infamy or Praise) (via Blawg Review #58 at Kevin Heller’s Tech Law Advisor).