Emancipate The Trees And Streams!
Three towns have already jumped on the bandwagon. (Did the making of that bandwagon violate the constitutional rights of some trees? Hmmm.)
Here's the scoop from the Pittsburgh Tribune:
An environmental group in Chambersburg is working with towns throughout the country to grant legal standing to ecosystems. That strategy, hatched by Thomas Linzey, executive director of the Community Environmental Defense Fund, asserts municipalities' powers of local control.
Linzey's nonprofit helps communities draft ordinances to enforce their own decisions. Four Pennsylvania towns have passed laws granting rights to Mother Nature since September.
Tamaqua in Schuylkill County was the first in the state -- and the nation. Its leaders decided to prohibit corporations from dumping waste in the borough. Blaine Township, near Taylorstown in Washington County, became the third in October and the first municipality in the United States to try to ban mining. ...
"Abolitionists didn't form a slavery protection agency like the Environmental Protection Agency," [Ben Price, projects director for the group] said. "They challenged the unjust structure of the law."
Let's put the implications of this simply: If you own property with any of that natural stuff on it and you want to build something, these groups would file a lawsuit to stop you on behalf of nature. They would pace meaningfully in front of the jury box, delivering impassioned arguments on behalf of the trees, brooks and bushes and their non-human inhabitants.
It'll be you vs. the cute little bunny. You won't have a chance.
It's just loony enough to work ... if the Pennsylvania Supreme Court is anything like Florida's.There's nothing new under the sun, by the way. PETA's been trying to secure constitutional rights for animals for some time now, with no success ... yet.