Does it really matter if “Pig-pig” is a pig or hog? Turns out it does. As reported by The Tacoma News Tribune:
A pig named Pig-pig was at the center of a courtroom drama this spring in Tacoma Municipal Court. The weighty legal question: How much wood could a woodchuck chuck?
Seriously, the question for the learned legal scholars: Is a pig a hog?
The saga began back in 2006 when a Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department inspector told Judson Morris III he was not permitted to keep a hog at his house within the City of Tacoma. Chapter 5.32 of the Tacoma Municipal Code forbids it.
Morris fought the charge, and his public defender successfully argued that the swine at Morris’ house was not a hog, and therefore not subject to the city ordinance.
It was, he said, a Vietnamese pot-bellied pig. The city rules don’t say anything about pigs, the attorney argued.
The judge dismissed the case, but the city appealed to Pierce County Superior Court. A judge there reversed the dismissal and ordered the case sent back to Tacoma Municipal Court.
A jury trial is scheduled for Jan. 14. Seriously.
Somehow I doubt they’ll be able to look to the legislative history to resolve this one …