As I wrote a couple of months ago, the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals was suing the NC Wildlife Resources Commission over the granting of a permit to the organizer of Brasstown's Possum Drop. That event is held annually on New Year's Eve and involves the lowering - not dropping - of a caged opossum to the ground in a take-off of Times Square's dropping the ball.
It seems that PETA must have found the most gullible judge in North Carolina. Senior Administrative Law Judge Fred Morrison, Jr. ruled yesterday that the NCWRC cannot issue a permit to Clay Logan for the live trapping of a opossum. A dead opossum is OK with the judge but not a live one.
Logan had a sportsman’s license and could have killed the animal, which was in season at the time. But he didn’t meet standards for either a license or a permit to keep animals in captivity, PETA argued, and no statute permitted the WRC to allow ‘possum-caging on a special and temporary basis.Judge Morrison went on to say:
Morrison agreed. Killing the animal was lawful; confining it was not.
“WRC should therefore have instructed Logan to immediately release the opossum into the wild where the opossum had been captured, or kill it,” Morrison wrote in his order.
“Hunters must afford wild animals the same right Patrick Henry yearned for,” Senior Administrative Law Judge Fred Morrison Jr. wrote in his order. “’Give me liberty, or give me death!’”I'm sorry but Judge Morrison is an idiot. I suppose it would be considered harassment if I mailed Judge Morrison a road-kill possum or sent him a snide email. Given I don't want either Postal Inspectors or FBI Special Agents knocking on my door, it is a nice idea but one on which I'll pass.
The NCWRC has 30 days in which to decide to appeal this case to Wake County Superior Court. Frankly, I hope they do.