Monday, April 22, 2013

"PC487" license plate joke...

What is Penal Code section 487? Grand theft, of course.
So the license plate joke answer is.... Grand Theft Auto.
And, for a primer on the famous videogame by that name, read this Ninth Circuit opinion.

Penal Code section 487, subdivision (d)(1), is the precise citation for GTA.
That same subdivision is also amusing in enumerating not just automobiles for grant theft treatment, but also a variety of farm animals! The exact listing is:
An automobile, horse, mare, gelding, any bovine animal, any caprine animal, mule, jack, jenny, sheep, lamb, hog, sow, boar, gilt, barrow, or pig.
One of these things is not like the others....

Also, I'm no farmhand -- and no drafter of legislation, either -- but why wasn't it enough to simply say "pig," which would presumably cover hogs, sows, boars, gilts, barrows, and shoats for that matter! If it's enough to say "bovine animal" or "caprine animal," wouldn't "porcine animal" have sufficed? And why go on after listing "mule" to then list "jacks" and "jennys" -- male and female mules [see correction below], respectively? Perhaps when this was drafted legislators were paid -- like paperback hacks -- by the word?

PC 487(d)(1) v. Animal Farm -- Are all pigs equal?

Mr. Ed(ucation) UPDATE: Reader Charles Hokanson points out that Jacks and jennys are male and female donkeys; whereas mules are hybrids (between horses and donkeys). A valuable correction. But the point remains, why not just use "equine animals" (covering horses, mules, donkeys, and perhaps even eohippises) and be done with it? Oh well, enough horseplay.