Feds: Kennedys' sea turtle rescue was a violation
BARNSTABLE, Mass. (AP) — Two members of the Kennedy family who thought they were doing a good deed by freeing an entangled sea turtle actually violated the law, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
John Bullard of NOAA's Division of Fisheries said he spoke to brothers Max and Robert F. Kennedy Jr. about their rescue of the leatherback turtle and explained to them that what they did was dangerous and a violation of the Endangered Species Act, which makes it illegal to handle an endangered or protected species.How much do you want to bet that a) this isn't a felony; and b) they won't be charged?
I'm curious how we're supposed to know which species are endangered and therefore verboten to touch vs. those that are not. The leatherback turtle, from the article, falls into the first category; how many other species also fall into this category? Are we facing a potential $50K fine and/or a year in jail for helping a turtle cross the road?
This goes hand-in-hand with the earlier post about Scabby the rat. A seemingly innocuous gesture - in this case a genuine attempt to help a struggling creature - put someone at risk of going to jail. When we have to make laws to keep people from helping turtles, well, you kind of have to wonder what the real reason for passing the law is.
Then again, didn't they go after Gibson - a GOP donor - for violating the Endangered Species Act?*
That is all.
*Yes, technically it was the Lacey Act, which centered on wildlife, fish, and plants...