Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby SoupOrSam on Thu May 23, 2013 2:45 pm

Hell, we should all show up to the zoo one day and jump the polar bear fence.

$
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby Kraftster on Thu May 23, 2013 2:48 pm

Idoit40fans wrote:
Kraftster wrote:And, yes, I was being facetious. I just don't understand the harsh view that folks are taking here. I mean, I'm the first person to say that we should hold people accountable for being stupid, but I'm generally considered to be an *******, so I just didn't think that was a widely held view.


The first person to say we should hold people accountable for being stupid or the first person to try to profit off of other people when someone who was stupid is willing to pay you?


I'm a mercenary. Most of the law conflicts with my own personal view of morality or what a legal system should accomplish in a philosophical sense. If I were to only handle matters that I found to be morally sound in all respects, I would not have a job. I play a game within a certain set of rules. I didn't write the rules, and I won't be able to re-write the rules. I am licensed to play the game within the rules, and I try to win the game regardless of whether I "agree with" the side I'm on.

Also, the parents won't pay anything out of their pocket, if that makes it any less like the attorney is taking advantage of the parents.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby Idoit40fans on Thu May 23, 2013 2:52 pm

Kraftster wrote:
Idoit40fans wrote:
Kraftster wrote:And, yes, I was being facetious. I just don't understand the harsh view that folks are taking here. I mean, I'm the first person to say that we should hold people accountable for being stupid, but I'm generally considered to be an *******, so I just didn't think that was a widely held view.


The first person to say we should hold people accountable for being stupid or the first person to try to profit off of other people when someone who was stupid is willing to pay you?


I'm a mercenary. Most of the law conflicts with my own personal view of morality or what a legal system should accomplish in a philosophical sense. If I were to only handle matters that I found to be morally sound in all respects, I would not have a job. I play a game within a certain set of rules. I didn't write the rules, and I won't be able to re-write the rules. I am licensed to play the game within the rules, and I try to win the game regardless of whether I "agree with" the side I'm on.

Also, the parents won't pay anything out of their pocket, if that makes it any less like the attorney is taking advantage of the parents.


Everything you just said is contradictory to what you've been saying throughout the thread. All of this about you not understanding people's outrage is BS, you just argue based on what you think you could win, not on what you think is right. None of us care about the likelihood of these people winning this case, we care about what would be just...which would be this case being dropped and these ******* being chastised for trying to open it.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby Kraftster on Thu May 23, 2013 3:00 pm

Idoit40fans wrote:
Kraftster wrote:
Idoit40fans wrote:
Kraftster wrote:And, yes, I was being facetious. I just don't understand the harsh view that folks are taking here. I mean, I'm the first person to say that we should hold people accountable for being stupid, but I'm generally considered to be an *******, so I just didn't think that was a widely held view.


The first person to say we should hold people accountable for being stupid or the first person to try to profit off of other people when someone who was stupid is willing to pay you?


I'm a mercenary. Most of the law conflicts with my own personal view of morality or what a legal system should accomplish in a philosophical sense. If I were to only handle matters that I found to be morally sound in all respects, I would not have a job. I play a game within a certain set of rules. I didn't write the rules, and I won't be able to re-write the rules. I am licensed to play the game within the rules, and I try to win the game regardless of whether I "agree with" the side I'm on.

Also, the parents won't pay anything out of their pocket, if that makes it any less like the attorney is taking advantage of the parents.


Everything you just said is contradictory to what you've been saying throughout the thread. All of this about you not understanding people's outrage is BS, you just argue based on what you think you could win, not on what you think is right. None of us care about the likelihood of these people winning this case, we care about what would be just...which would be this case being dropped and these ******* being chastised for trying to open it.


I was not really commenting one way or the other on what I believe is right in this case. I sympathize with the mother in this case because I don't think her mistake was as egregious as some others seem to. I innocently picked up my daughter by the hands last year and dislocated her elbow. There are a number of different accounts of what happened here -- see pittsoccer's post, which reads much more innocently than some of the assumptions that she just popped him up on the railing and down he went.

As for my own moral feelings, I think there are a lot of other things that I'd do first if we are going to start punishing "stupidity." But, yeah, arguing a pro-plaintiff position here is basically just an exercise for me.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby SoupOrSam on Thu May 23, 2013 3:10 pm

I think the mother should have to jump into a pit with the wild dogs... in the middle is a bag of $300,000.... if she makes it out she keeps it.

That's how MURICA rolls. Reality TV it.

Better yet.... she has a choice. #1: No money winnings, but a memorial is placed at the exhibit. Fixes to current exhibits around the world... or choice #2: MONEY RUN!
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby Kraftster on Thu May 23, 2013 3:26 pm

According to the complaint, the mother "attempted to lift [her son] with the intent of holding him in her arms so that he could get a better view of the African wild dogs below . . . As she was lifting and holding [him], he lurched forward and slipped out of her grasp and fell through the unprotected opening and into netting below." There is reference to a witness seeing this happen.

The thought of that happening is horrifying. I don't think it is something that a number of parents would not do. Obviously, parents don't "drop" their two-year olds regularly, but the notion that this mother should be blaming herself for being stupid? Man, I just don't know.

Edit: Also, there is specific reference to and photos of a number of other exhibits (some with the same animals) and the safety measures that those exhibits utilize which would have prevented this incident from occurring.

Finally, the "only asking for $300,000" thing is wrong. Each of the 6 counts in the complaint seeks "in excess of $50,000."
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby Shyster on Thu May 23, 2013 3:43 pm

Kraftster wrote:Finally, the "only asking for $300,000" thing is wrong. Each of the 6 counts in the complaint seeks "in excess of $50,000."

Right, and even those requests are not specific. Each count asks for more than $50,000 because under 42 Pa.C.S. § 7361 that’s the amount over which no case can be referred to arbitration. It’s a strictly pro forma request that in no way represents the actual amount the plaintiffs may be seeking.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby shafnutz05 on Thu Sep 12, 2013 8:11 am

http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/local/region/pittsburgh-zoo-blames-mother-for-boys-mauling-death-in-court-filing-702870/

The Pittsburgh Zoo has went ahead and finally filed a cross-claim against the mother of the 2-year-old that died. The mom's attorney is naturally trying to paint this as callous, but there's really nothing wrong with it from my point of view.

University of Pittsburgh law professor John Burkoff said the filing by the zoo assessing blame is not at all unusual in litigation.

"Of course, the people at the zoo are sad and horrified at what happened. Everyone is," he said. "But their position is nonetheless that, however tragic this was, it was not really the zoo that was at fault."

Whether that position is correct, Mr. Burkoff continued, will be decided either at trial, or more likely in a settlement.

"But before the parties can go to trial or settle, if that's what is going to happen, they have to let the other side know exactly what they are contending. And that is simply what the zoo is doing, through its lawyers," he said.

In addition to raising the new matter against Elizabeth Derkosh, the court filing also answers the original complaint filed against the zoo, which includes claims for negligence and wrongful death.

In its answer, the zoo said there were no safety inadequacies that posed any threat to visitors at the exhibit; that the organization did not have outdated tranquilizer darts as the plaintiffs have claimed; that the Plexiglass below the railing was not dirty or discolored and that the viewing area was not unprotected.

Mr. Mulvihill also wrote that the railing at the exhibit met building and safety codes and that it was angled at 45 degrees to prevent people from sitting or standing on it.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby Troy Loney on Thu Sep 12, 2013 8:39 am

Good, I hope this goes to trial and they find in favor of the zoo.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby Idoit40fans on Thu Sep 12, 2013 8:40 am

Indeed.

As an aside, I think that this thread title is inaccurate.

PS: 5 words in a row that start with "t" in that sentence.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby cheesesteakwithegg on Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:23 am

#TeamZoo
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby viva la ben on Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:25 am

Even thinking about this makes me want to throw up.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby TheHammer24 on Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:25 am

I am not sure why it's so odd for the mother to argue the zoo's display was "unreasonably unsafe"--i.e., reasonable people in the position of the zoo (other zookeepers) would have made the display in a manner that could prevent the injury. Maybe the mother was contributorily negligent. But that's not a bar for relief; it's only an offset of what she could recover. I find these viewpoint interesting (not necessarily wrong), and I think it sheds light on how lawyers and legal education are left-leaning and more communitarian, while the board is more right-leaning and libertarian.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby Troy Loney on Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:30 am

I can toss my kid over an overpass into oncoming traffic. Is the city to blame for not providing sufficient barriers to prevent that?

I don't think that our legal code should be created in a way that people can profit by creating fascinating new ways of injuring themselves that someone else could have prevented.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby shmenguin on Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:34 am

the quest for blame is maybe the most annoying trait i can think of about humans
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby count2infinity on Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:36 am

I wish there was a court of common sense for all these freaking trials. How do you drop your kid into a zoo exhibit and then blame the zoo for your own negligence as a parent? Common sense says, yeah... she shouldn't be getting any money for this.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby Idoit40fans on Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:40 am

Yeah, I don't know if you should just have to make it safe enough for "a reasonably careful person", but it seems like this was safe enough for a pretty low(high?) level of carelessness.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby Troy Loney on Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:40 am

count2infinity wrote:I wish there was a court of common sense for all these freaking trials. How do you drop your kid into a zoo exhibit and then blame the zoo for your own negligence as a parent? Common sense says, yeah... she shouldn't be getting any money for this.



All it is going to do is make the zoo have to create new and likely overwhelming barriers to the exhibits. So basically the zoo is going to have to invest in new infrastructure and hire more workers to watch people more closely. The zoo now has to account for the possiblity that patrons will potentially drop their children into the exhibits.

This will make the zoo more expensive to run, and thus more expensive for the customers and potentially injure it's viability as an ongoing enteprise.

There's a difference in consumer oriented laws that prevent McDonalds from feeding me poison and preventing people from inanely injuring themselves.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby TheHammer24 on Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:40 am

Troy Loney wrote:I can toss my kid over an overpass into oncoming traffic. Is the city to blame for not providing sufficient barriers to prevent that?

I don't think that our legal code should be created in a way that people can profit by creating fascinating new ways of injuring themselves that someone else could have prevented.

That is an absolutely absurd analogy. The mother did not "toss" her daughter, and there would be no reason to hold her daughter up against the overpass such that overpass-designers should prepare for that. The zoo, on the other hand, had every reason to think its young customers would be held up next to the glass displays, and reasonably so. Hundreds of kids -- every day -- are lifted up against the glass displays. How does it then make sense to remove that glass display in one portion, and without warning, such that a child not unreasonably leaning against the glass would fall forward, thinking the glass (which is, well, clear) was still in front her?

You can't recharacterize what happened to fit your narrative. I'm not saying the zoo acted egregiously. I'm not saying the zoo acted egregiously. I'm just saying our legal system does a good job of getting very, very safe products through the (dis)incentive of liability.

shmenguin wrote:the quest for blame is maybe the most annoying trait i can think of about humans


I absolutely agree with this statement. My posts elsewhere share the sentiment.
Last edited by TheHammer24 on Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby Idoit40fans on Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:42 am

TheHammer24 wrote:
Troy Loney wrote:I can toss my kid over an overpass into oncoming traffic. Is the city to blame for not providing sufficient barriers to prevent that?

I don't think that our legal code should be created in a way that people can profit by creating fascinating new ways of injuring themselves that someone else could have prevented.

That is an absolutely absurd analogy. The mother did not "toss" her daughter, and there would be no reason to hold her daughter up against the overpass such that overpass-designers should prepare for that. The zoo, on the other hand, had every reason to think its young customers would be held up next to the glass displays, and reasonably so. Hundreds of kids -- every day -- are lifted up against the glass displays. How does it then make sense to remove that glass display in one portion, and without warning, such that a child not unreasonably leaning against the glass would fall forward, thinking the glass (which is, well, clear) was still in front her?

You can't recharacterize what happened to fit your narrative. I'm not saying the zoo acted egregiously. I'm not saying the zoo acted egregiously. I'm just saying our legal system does a good job of getting very, very safe products through the (dis)incentive of liability.


Its definitely absurd, you can't toss the kid over, you'd have to just hold him over the edge and have him slip out of your grip in order to blame the city. Lets not be crazy here.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby count2infinity on Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:42 am

Troy Loney wrote:There's a difference in consumer oriented laws that prevent McDonalds from feeding me poison and preventing people from inanely injuring themselves.


Depends on your definition of poison ;)

I do agree though. I feel bad for the zoo that they're going to have to invest more money into exhibits because of stupid people.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby slappybrown on Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:43 am

You guys are brutal, but a defense attorney's dream jury.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby TheHammer24 on Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:44 am

Idoit40fans wrote:
TheHammer24 wrote:
Troy Loney wrote:I can toss my kid over an overpass into oncoming traffic. Is the city to blame for not providing sufficient barriers to prevent that?

I don't think that our legal code should be created in a way that people can profit by creating fascinating new ways of injuring themselves that someone else could have prevented.

That is an absolutely absurd analogy. The mother did not "toss" her daughter, and there would be no reason to hold her daughter up against the overpass such that overpass-designers should prepare for that. The zoo, on the other hand, had every reason to think its young customers would be held up next to the glass displays, and reasonably so. Hundreds of kids -- every day -- are lifted up against the glass displays. How does it then make sense to remove that glass display in one portion, and without warning, such that a child not unreasonably leaning against the glass would fall forward, thinking the glass (which is, well, clear) was still in front her?

You can't recharacterize what happened to fit your narrative. I'm not saying the zoo acted egregiously. I'm not saying the zoo acted egregiously. I'm just saying our legal system does a good job of getting very, very safe products through the (dis)incentive of liability.


Its definitely absurd, you can't toss the kid over, you'd have to just hold him over the edge and have him slip out in order to blame the city. Lets not be crazy here.

It's fine if you can't see the difference between holding a kid over an overpass and holding a kid up against the glass of a zoo display. If you can't figure it out intuitively, empirics should help. Every day 10,000s of toddlers are picked up and put against the glass of a zoo display. None are held over an overpass.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby slappybrown on Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:44 am

TheHammer24 wrote:I am not sure why it's so odd for the mother to argue the zoo's display was "unreasonably unsafe"--i.e., reasonable people in the position of the zoo (other zookeepers) would have made the display in a manner that could prevent the injury. Maybe the mother was contributorily negligent. But that's not a bar for relief; it's only an offset of what she could recover. I find these viewpoint interesting (not necessarily wrong), and I think it sheds light on how lawyers and legal education are left-leaning and more communitarian, while the board is more right-leaning and libertarian.

Its also the fact that the simple act of filing a lawsuit -- even one that is not frivolous such as this one (not frivolous in the legal sense, relax everyone) -- engenders rabid anger.
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Re: Tragedy today at Pittsburgh Zoo

Postby Idoit40fans on Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:48 am

I didn't bring up the overpass issue, lets go with held out over a hotel balcony, stadium balcony, highway overlook railing, pier railing? What does glass have to do with any of this?
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