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Ahh, the many ways justice can be miscarried in the American legal system! It’s refreshing, really, to see so much creativity and innovativeness at work. And so, now that 2002 is just a memory, let us celebrate that can-do spirit with the O.J.s, JD Jungle‘s first annual honors for outrageousness and stupidity in the law. 1. Our great constitution protects yet another precious freedom. A quadriplegic Florida man sued a West Palm Beach strip club for violating the Americans with Disabilities Act because its lap-dance room didn’t have wheelchair access. 2. Somewhere, Little Debbie is sweating bullets. A 5’10″, 272-pound New York man with heart disease, diabetes and high cholesterol filed a class action lawsuit, seeking unspecified damages, claiming McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s and Kentucky Fried Chicken made him obese. 3. Uh, better check with Liddy Dole about that one. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that expert medical testimony wasn’t needed to prove “emotional damages” in a case where a surgical patient awoke with an unwanted penile prosthesis. 4. Scalia was always big on precedent. U.S. Supreme Court justice Antonin Scalia said that any Catholic judges who follow the pope’s teachings against the death penalty should resign. His reasoning? The church supported the death penalty for two millennia, said Scalia, a Catholic. “I don’t see why there’s been a change.” 5. And where’s this Andersen guy everyone keeps talking about? During the world-famous trial that found accounting giant Arthur Andersen guilty of obstructing justice in the multibillion-dollar Enron collapse, one juror was asked if the government’s star witness was the man on trial, another inquired if NASA was somehow involved, and both took naps. 6. Objection, your honor! Spanking the witness! A federal judge ruled that a Connecticut attorney’s malpractice insurer did not have to pay a $250,000 judgment resulting from an incident in which the lawyer allegedly spanked a 22-year-old client. The attorney did not acknowledge the paddling, but he conceded that he had raised the idea. His threat, he said, was meant to stop the woman from fidgeting while testifying. 7. Whatever. Like they have more important things to do. The U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear a dispute over whose idea it was to use a Chihuahua “spokesdog” in Taco Bell commercials. 8. Good thing they didn’t call her a crack whore. An ex-”Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire?” contestant sued a San Francisco radio station after DJs called her a “big skank.” But a California appeals court ruled that the term has “no generally recognized meaning” and is “too vague to be capable of being proven to be true or false.” 9. Talk about winning over the jury. A Canadian court sentenced a man to six years in prison for having an affair with a juror at his murder trial (he was acquitted). The juror, who served three months, testified that the defendant flirted with her during the presentation of evidence. 10. He must be too busy searching for the real killers … The California law firm of Meserve, Mumper & Hughes sued O.J. Simpson, claiming that the former football star and accused double murderer has failed to pay the firm $204,275, plus interest, for its work on behalf of Simpson’s child-custody claims. Without scrapes like that, of course, these prestigious awards would not be possible.

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