Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Poetic Justice?

This judicial "poem" from Judge Cain of the Franklin County Ohio Court of Common Pleas has been making the rounds. The poem came about after an inmate who was serving time for a relatively minor crime sued guards at the Correctional Reception Center. The inmate told guards that the showers were making him sick, but the guards refused to let the inmate use the bathroom, causing him to soil himself. 

Judge Cain found the suit frivolous and dismissed it in a rhyming opinion that has struck some as unnecessary ridicule:

Cold showers caused his bowels to malfunction
Or so the plaintiff claims
A strict uncaring prison guard
Is whom the plaintiff blames.
While in line for recreation
And little time for hesitation
His anal sphincter just exploded
The plaintiff’s britches quickly loaded.
It made the inmates laugh and play
To see the plaintiff’s pants this way
The foul, unsightly, putrid mess
Caused the plaintiff major stress.
Claiming loss and shame to boot
The plaintiff filed the present suit
But the law provideth no relief
From such unmitigated grief.
Neither runs nor constipation
Can justify this litigation
Whether bowels constrict or flex
De minimus non curat lex. [The law takes no account of trifles.]

You can read the story here, including details about less-than-ideal conditions at Ohio's prisons.  

I'm all for fun in law. But is this the right case to "have some fun" with? Does the poem strike you as appropriate under the circumstances?

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