WTF Fun Fact 12701 – Like A Fish Out Of Water

We may not all love bees, but we can’t live without them since they pollinate the crops that make the food we eat (among other integral ecological roles). That makes protecting them integral to our future.

In California, that means considering them “fish” for conservation purposes.

The law is a weird thing sometimes. In this case, it required some creative thinking in order to make sure bees got protected status under the California Endangered Species Act (CESA).

Others had argued that the Act protects only “birds, mammals, fish, amphibians, reptiles, and plants” – in other words, not insects like bees. They won the original court case, but it was just overturned by a Sacramento Court of Appeal.

According to Reuters:

“While ‘fish’ is ‘commonly understood to refer to aquatic species, the term of art employed by the Legislature … is not so limited,’ Associate Justice Ronald Robie wrote for the appeals court.
CESA itself does not define “fish,” but the law is part of the California Fish and Game Code. The code’s definition includes any ‘mollusk, crustacean, invertebrate (or) amphibian,’ Robie wrote. All those categories ‘encompass terrestrial and aquatic species,’ and the state legislature has already approved the listing of at least one land-based mollusk, the opinion said.
‘Accordingly, a terrestrial invertebrate, like each of the four bumblebee species, may be listed as an endangered or threatened species,’ Robie wrote, joined by Acting Presiding Justice Cole Blease and Associate Justice Andrea Lynn Hoch.'”

The case is Almond Alliance of California et al. v. Fish and Game Commission et al, Xerces Society For Invertebrate Conservation et al, intervenors; California Court of Appeal, Third Appellate District, No. C093542.

 WTF fun facts

Source: “Bees are ‘fish’ under Calif. Endangered Species Act – state court” — Reuters

WTF Fun Fact 12599 – Philadelphia’s “Eagles Jail”

Philadelphia fans have a reputation for being…well, let’s say rowdy. For example, they’re the fans who booed Santa Claus and pelted him with snowballs. In fact, in 1986, the Eagles stadium stopped selling beer at halftime in the hopes of improving fan behavior. But it clearly didn’t do the job because, in 1997, the Eagles installed a courtroom and jail at Veterans Stadium.

During a Monday Night Football game that year, the Eagles played the 49ers in a matchup that somehow sparked around 60 fistfights in the stands, along with some yahoo setting off a flare gun. Enough was enough. Families claimed to be afraid to take their children to games. So, the next time fans returned to the stadium, Eagles Court was in order.

On opening day, 20 fans were brought in front of Justice Seamus P. McCaffery.

But here’s another fun fact: It turns out Philly fans weren’t really the problem.

McCaffery said :

Eagles Court was a lot of fun and it served a purpose. One of the interesting facts that came out of Eagles Court was that 95 percent of the people arrested were not from Philadelphia. But Philadelphia was getting broad-brushed as the city with horrible, horrible fans.”

So, apparently, Philly isn’t necessarily home to rowdy fans, but it encouraged rowdiness in people somehow.

For the most part, the court existed to bounce and/or fine people who got out of hand. Anyone who had committed a legit crime was handed over to the local police.

Eagles security and Philadelphia police had cited or arrested fans in the past, but most of them never showed up to their court dates weeks or months later, and their crimes weren’t serious enough for the police to track them down again. Eagles court made sure they were fined on the spot (or assigned community service).

But one of the problems with Eagles court is that it virtually forced people to plead guilty on the spot to avoid being arrested for real. It’s unlikely that everyone was sober enough to understand what was happening.

Some media outlets report that the court was only housed in the stadium in 1997 and was transferred out and into an actual court by 1998, while others say it was in the stadium for its whole (short) life, from 1997 to 2003. When the Vet was replaced by Lincoln Financial Field, there was also a 4-cell jail inside, but that only lasted two years. – WTF fun facts

Source: “The Eagles’ history features a stadium jail, bounties and vomit, but lacks titles” — CBS Sports