Humans have been living together since the very beginning; first, in small family units, then small tribes, which eventually grew in size until they became villages, then towns, then kingdoms, and then cities. Over the course of centuries, people who lived in more advanced and populated communities had to experience times of war, sickness, enlightenment, famine, and peace. But no matter the situation, one thing was certain—everyone still had to follow the rule of law. In terms of overall importance, the rule of law ranks at the top of the list. Without it, life would be a lot different because people would be able to do whatever they wanted to others without the fear of any sort of repercussion.
Now, there are those who believe that the law does not apply to some because of their status or wealth. But in truth, it does indeed apply to everyone, especially when there is clear and substantial evidence. Obviously, the legal system has its problems. Everything does; because there are those who use it for their own gain which, in doing so, does make a mockery of the entire institution. But even with those problems, no one will ever say that life would be better without any of the more fundamental laws in place. On any given day, there are literally hundreds of different court cases taking place all over the world, and as far as most of them are concerned, the cases are in fact legitimate. Sometimes, though, there are cases that make it to the courts that are completely absurd, and the purpose of this list is to bring 15 of those cases to light.
15. Google Maps Getting Sued For Giving Bad Directions
Since its founding in 1998, Google has expanded immensely and now offers a variety of different services, including Google Maps, which provides satellite images, street maps, panoramic street views, and real-life traffic conditions. The main reason why people use Google Maps is to get directions, and although the service uses a lot of data to provide these directions, it still sometimes makes mistakes, just like a living person. In 2010, Laura Rosenberg went for a walk, and Google Maps eventually brought the Los Angeles resident to a road that was designated as being “safe” for pedestrians, but this was a mistake because the service brought her to a four-lane highway instead. For some reason, Laura decided to keep walking on the highway instead of using both her eyes and brain and was unsurprisingly hit by a car. And because she got herself into an accident, she sued Google for telling her that the highway was a safe road.
14. The Scopes Trial
Over the course of human history, mankind has made several breakthroughs in the field of science. And in 1859, the world went into an uproar after Charles Darwin’s book, On The Origin Of Species, was released. The book introduced the world to the theory of evolution, which claimed that every living thing on Earth, including humans, came into being after evolving from other animals over the course of thousands of years, a theory which greatly contradicted the claim that God created everything. Ever since the theory became public knowledge, science and religion have been at odds with each other. And in 1925, the two sides battled one another in the courtroom in the infamous Scopes Trial, which began when John Scopes, a high school teacher in Tennessee, taught evolution in class. This set off a firestorm and resulted in Scopes losing the trial and paying a $100 fine. But the ruling was later overturned by the State’s Supreme Court, who believed that you can teach evolution in a SCIENCE class.
13. The NFL Getting Sued By An Inmate
Football is, without a doubt, the most beloved sport in the United States, which is why the NFL continues to flourish despite receiving a lot of bad press over the past few years, thanks to concussions and the exploits of some players off the field. Two of the more iconic teams in the NFL are the Dallas Cowboys and Green Bay Packers. In 2015, both teams met in the playoffs, a game which Green Bay won, thanks to a Cowboys’ catch that was later controversially overturned. The Cowboys have a very dedicated fanbase, including Terry Hendrix who, at the time, was an inmate at a Colorado Correctional Facility. He sued the NFL for “negligence, breach of fiduciary duty, and also reckless disregard” because of the bad call that he claimed cost Dallas a Conference Championship. The Lawsuit was for $88 million. Unsurprisingly, he was not awarded a penny.
12. University Sued For Expelling Someone With Smelly Feet
There are only a few things that a majority of people can agree upon, and one of those things is that education is incredibly important because without a decent education, it is likely that you will not be able to support yourself later on in life. In 1999, Erasmus University made headlines in the Netherlands when news broke that the school had expelled a student because his feet smelled bad due to the fact that he never washed them and did not wear shoes. Teunis Tenbrook was the student’s name, and the school claimed that the smell from his feet made it too difficult for professors and other students to concentrate in class, thereby justifying the expulsion. But, Tenbrook did not agree with their decision and sued them for it. The two sides were in court for literally a decade, and in 2009, a judge finally ruled in TenBrook’s favor, stating that those in the University should just “hold their noses.”
11. The Judas Priest Trial
For nearly three decades now, rap and hip-hop are the genres that have dominated the music world. But prior to both genres, it was Rock music that defined an entire generation. The band Judas Priest debuted in 1969 and has been recording ever since. Thanks to their play style and sound, they are considered to be one of the most influential bands in all of Rock. In 1985, they gained more notoriety when they were taken to court after two teenagers shot themselves. One of the teens died while the other suffered severe facial injuries, and the parents, who were rightfully distraught, sued the band because they claimed that the band had subliminal messaging in their music which told their children to commit suicide. Their claims had no basis in reality, though, as the judge ruled in the band’s favor after it was discovered that both teens had long and disturbing histories.
10. FedEx Sued For Leaving A Package At The Door
For a long time, if people needed to buy something, they needed to walk to a store or merchant to get it. But over the last two decades, the number of people going out to buy things has greatly decreased, thanks to the internet. Although we mostly order things online now, we still need them to be delivered to us, which is where courier delivery services like FedEx come into play. FedEx has been around since 1971, and as most of you will agree, they tend to do a great job in delivering packages. In fact, they deliver thousands of packages a day, many of which they simply leave outside of people’s homes. In 2015, a driver left a package outside of a Massachusetts home, and when the owner went to leave the house, she tripped over the package that was placed in plane sight. The woman was not pleased that she was not told the package’s location and decided to sue FedEx because of it, citing that she suffered physical pain, anguish, and humiliation from tripping over it.
9. Man Sued His Employers Because They Were Boring
It is true that everyone needs food, water, clothing, and some sort of shelter in order to survive, which is why money is so important. Without it, no one would be able to buy any of those necessities. There is only one real way to make money in this world and that is by working for it, which is why most people have jobs. But just because we need a job, does not mean that we have to like it. In truth, most people hate their job for a variety of reasons, and in some cases, those reasons do lead to legitimate lawsuits against a co-worker and/or boss. However, very few people sue their employer due to a lack of excitement. Last year, Fredric Desnard quit his job at a Paris-based perfume company because he found the job to be too boring; so boring, in fact, that he felt “depressed, destroyed, and ashamed” for working there. Desnard blamed his employers for the boredom, sued them because of it, and demanded that they pay him more than $325,000.
8. The Dinner Roll Lawsuit
One of nature’s most fundamental laws is that everything needs to eat in order to give their body the nutrients needed to continue living. But we, humans, have turned something as simple as eating into a multibillion-dollar industry. Since the recent recession, many restaurants were forced to close because a lot of people could not afford to go out to eat as much as they used to. However, many restaurants were able to weather the storm, like Lambert’s Cafe in Missouri, which has a unique tradition of allowing costumers to throw dinner rolls during meals. Now, this restaurant makes it abundantly clear that people are allowed to throw dinner rolls, as it is stated on the big sign outside and on many smaller signs inside. But one woman in 2015 apparently forgot about this tradition and was very upset after a dinner roll hit her in the eye; so upset that she sued the restaurant for $25,000 to cover both her legal and medical fees.
7. A Lawsuit For “Like, Five, Six Scratches”
No matter where you live, it is always very important to keep a lookout for any kind of gas leak because if you have one and produce some sort of spark, not only do you risk burning down your home, but you also risk causing an explosion. In 2015, the residents of an apartment building in New York’s East Village saw the results of this type of explosion firsthand, when their entire building went up in flames. The explosion caused bodily harm to many of the residents, as well as heavy losses in property, which is why there were several suits filed, including one that was filed by two women who did not even live in the building. Both women were subletting an apartment in the East Village and filed a $40-million lawsuit where they claimed to have suffered mental trauma from the event, as well as physical harm in the form of “like, five or six scratches,” even though they were not near the explosion when it occurred.
6. The Michael Jordan Lawsuit
In the world of professional sports, there will always be disagreements regarding who the best player in that particular sport is. But when it comes to basketball, the answer is very simple, as Michael Jordan is the best to ever play the game. He may be the best basketball player ever, but that does not mean that Jordan has not had to deal with his fair share of legal issues, with the most expensive one, of course, being his divorce from his first wife. He was also part of one of the weirdest lawsuits to ever be filed against an athlete. In 2006, Allen Heckard sued Jordan because he was fed up of people telling him that he looked like the NBA legend. In fact, he claimed that his likeness to Jordan caused him personal anguish and pain. In the end, he tried suing Jordan for $416 million, including $52 million in damages, and because he blamed Nike for promoting Jordan, he also sued them for another $416 million.
5. Fosters Sued For Not Actually Brewing Beer In Australia
Everyone likes to have a nice cold drink after a long day/week of work or when they are eating a meal. And although there are literally hundreds of drinks to choose from, beer is still one of the most popular ones. Foster’s Lager was first introduced in 1889, and although it originated in Australia, it can now be found all over the world. However, in 2011, they decided to move manufacturing to Texas. Now, people are very particular about their beer, and in Leif Nelson’s case, he felt cheated when he learned that the beer was made in Texas instead of Australia, so he sued the company because of it. In the suit, Nelson claimed that Foster’s has made millions by advertising that their beer is brewed in Australia. But what is really funny about this suit is the fact that Nelson made it quite clear that he was still very pleased with the actual product and that he would continue to drink it if they started brewing it in Australia again.
4. An Aunt Suing Her Nephew Because Of A Hug
Everyone reading this was once a kid, so you know full well that kids tend to get very excited at times, especially during their own birthday. But, in Jennifer Connell’s case, she apparently mistook excitement for careless endangerment of an adult. Kids hug their family members, and when they are excited, the hugs tend to have more force behind them because the kid is usually sprinting towards that family member. Now, when Jennifer’s 8-year-old nephew came to hug her during his birthday party, she inadvertently fell backwards and broke her wrist. Like the good aunt that she is, Jennifer later sued her nephew for $127,000 in damages, with the lawyer stating that her nephew “should have known better” and that he was not careful and unsafe. The suit actually took four years to settle, with the jury, who deliberated for a surprising 25 minutes, deciding to reward the lovable aunt by awarding her absolutely nothing in damages.
3. A Man Sued A Woman For Not Wanting To Sleep With Him
We all grow up. It is just a part of life. And when we all reach a certain age, we all develop certain urges; urges that tend to lead to intimate encounters with other individuals, who we sometimes go on to spend a significant amount of time with. In our society, it has become a lot more common to see a much older man with a far younger woman, and although those relationships are said to be “loving” ones, in most cases, it happens to be an old man with a lot of money using his wealth to attract younger women. Rolf Eden is a German actor who was known for being quite the playboy in his younger years. In 2007, he filed a lawsuit against a 19-year-old woman essentially because she refused to sleep with him. Eden, who at the time was 77, tried to pick her up at a bar, and when she said he was too old for her, he got back at her with a suit claiming age discrimination, a suit which he later dropped, probably due to how absurd it was.
2. The PETA Copyright Lawsuit
Although we technically have dominion over all other animals, it does not mean that we have the right to treat them inhumanely, because all animals do feel pain just like we do. Protecting animal rights has now become far more important than ever before, and it is primarily thanks to groups like PETA, who have led the charge. But even their great cause can go a bit overboard at times because of silly issues. In 2011, David Slater, a nature photographer, allowed a macaque to take his camera, and the monkey ended up taking a selfie in which it was smiling. The picture made headlines, but PETA believed that everyone, except the monkey, was profiting from the picture, so the organization filed a lawsuit on its behalf, claiming that the photo’s copyright belonged to the macaque. The picture is still in the public domain, though, because the U.S. Copyright Office determined that a monkey cannot own a copyright. Well, should we be surprised?
1. The PTSD Pineapple
As we have learned over the past few years, people will go out and protest for just about anything, and most of the time, police need to be present in order to make sure that the protests do not get too out-of-control and/or violent. In 2001, a protest broke out in Glasgow, Scotland and former policewoman, Tracey Ormsby, was one of the officers sent to deal with the protesters who, at one point, started throwing things at law enforcement, including a pineapple. Ormsby was hit by the pineapple, which apparently left her physically and mentally scarred, because she claimed that the fruit caused her PTSD and anxiety, which ultimately ruined her career. She went on to file a lawsuit in which she demanded 1.5 million Pounds in damages. In 2008, the judge awarded her just 3,000 Pounds for the physical harm and deemed her to be a complete liar in regards to the psychological harm, because it was later revealed that she was blackmailing her former lover to support her claim.
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