Judge Dismisses Nick Sandmann Lawsuit After First Round of Motions, Saying Just That It Was An “Opinion” That Sandmann Was a Racist And so the Washington Post Cannot Be Liable for Publishing His Lies
Taste it Catholic boy.
Other lessons are pending.
(Ace Of Spades editorial) And the Washington Post, furthermore, wasn’t even required to view a 20 minute video which would have proven that Chief Lieawatha was lying.
It’s an “opinion” — publish all the lies you want without any fact-checking required to maintain your immunity to lawsuit.
He didn’t say that last part, but that’s what the judge must have found when he typed up this very short dismissal order which did not mention that simple viewing of the full video, available to everyone, and only 20 minutes long, would have shown that the Post were publishing lies, but apparently they don’t have to even bother watching a 20 minute video as the most minor of fact-checking before slandering a child.
Let me just say that my experience in the federal courts, before an Obama appointee, by the way, also fighting for the right for free speech, and with the additional consideration that anonymous speech was long-recognized as a core part of the First Amendment, was not met with the same eagerness to dismiss,
In my case, a conservative being sued by a leftist instead of a liberal billion dollar corporation being sued by a presumably-conservative child, the court really wanted to go through two and a half years of very expensive motions and orders and really wanted to make sure that the leftist had not had any avenues of justice closed off to him prematurely.
In my case, the right of the press to report freely without being overly fearful of lawsuits was…. how do I put this? Not even on the docket, as they say.
Let me just point out that I have been very, very fearful about what I write since that lawsuit, and have in fact been very, very inhibited in seeking and writing what I believe to be the truth.
See, but that doesn’t matter; I’m a conservative. I should be fearful. My rights to free speech must take not just second place but possibly seventh or eight place to anyone who claims to have been harmed by my speech.
But the Washington Post is a left wing billion dollar media corporation, you see. Its free speech rights are ABSOLUTELY PARAMOUNT, and greater in fact than that of a child to not be defamed in national media, and in fact so ABSOLUTE is this right of a left wing corporation to destroy people that it must not be encumbered even by the requirement of having to watch a 20 minute video, available to everyone on the internet, before rushing out with a defamatory lie about a child.
See, it’s just “opinion.”
My case? Not opinion and even if it was, so what? It was BAD OPINION.
So yeah, this is me, having gone through an emotional hell for 2 1/2 years and around $40,000 in personal expenses telling you that yes, the system is rigged against you, and yes, you are second class citizens, and you need to decide if you’re willing to tolerate that situation and for how long.
This is intolerable.
Sorry to be so dramatic. You have no idea the anger I’m feeling right now.
This will be my last real post for a while. I’m shaking with rage.
I have seen the future of what they plan for you. When I speak about dual classes of citizenship, I am not being rhetorical. I mean it. I’ve seen it.
And this is just one more government finding that there are two classes of citizens, and they have wildly, extravagantly different rights and responsibilities.
The Rule of Law Has Been Stolen From You and Replaced With Ruthless Will-to-Power Marxism
As that lawyer for the Newspaper said in the Paul Newman movie “absence of malice” so they have no case.
Even the absence of malice standard can be met if you knew it was untrue or if you published with reckless indifference to whether it was true or not.
Given that there was a 20 minute video, available when they printed, that showed Phillips to be a liar, and they either didn’t bother watching that or did watch it and then reported the lie anyway, they do in fact have legal malice here.
That’s why this judge claimed, bizarrely, that it was an “opinion.” The Washington Post loses, slam-dunk, on any defamation charge.
So the only possibility to vindicate the Washington Post is to claim the statement is not even capable of being defamatory, because it was mere opinion.
Now, here’s the Fact/Opinion distinction: A fact is either true or not true. It can be proven true or false.
An opinion is, well, pure opinion. It’s like if I call you ugly — well, there’s no way to say you’re definitely not ugly. Even if 90% of the public said that you were in the to 10% of good-looking people, I could find that your features just didn’t appeal to me and say you’re ugly, and you can’t sue me for that.
This is the important thing: You cannot just say “Well it’s my opinion that you cheat on your wife” and then claim “it was just an opinion” in court.
Because your opinion made a statement about a fact that could be true or could be false, and you said it was true. True, you added in “In my opinion,” but if all it took to be immune to lawsuit was to say “in my opinion,” then we’d have no defamation law at all.
Let’s face it, any contested fact could be said to just be an opinion.
If I say someone is an idiot, that’s just an opinion. Maybe he’s an idiot by my standard.
But if I say, “It’s my opinion that he’s an idiot because he failed his bar exam,” well, that first part is opinion, but the second part is a factualclaim — even if the word “opinion” is in the sentence there, somewhere.
Now, in this case, Phillips lied. He said Sandmann blocked his forward movement and taunted him.
These are factual claims. He cannot escape liability for these factual misrepresentations just by saying, “Well, that’s my opinion.”
Otherwise I could just say “You cheat on your wife and beat your kids” — factual statements, again — and then, when hailed into court, I could just say, “Well that’s my opinion.”
And the judge says, Case dismissed.
Is that how it works? No, of course not. Again, if that’s how it worked, there would be no claim of defamation at all, ever, anywhere.
Now, the Washington Post published this false claim of fact without checking its veracity. They are liable for it, then. If a newspaper publishes me saying of you, “You cheat on your wife and you beat your kids,” the newspaper cannot evade responsibility for publishing the defamation just by saying, “Well, in the opinion of Ace, that’s what we thought.”
If it worked this way, again, there’d never be defamation.
But the judge is determined to dismiss the suit — so he takes a black-letter statement of fact , which can either be proven true or false, and simply says, without any argument supporting his position, “It’s opinion and therefore not libelous. Case dismissed.”
But Sandmann did not block the Indian — the Indian marched right into his face.
Sandmann did not “taunt” the Indian — the Indian banged a drum in his face, taunting Sandmann.
The Indian made false, defamatory claims of fact, not opinion, and the Washington Post published these false, defamatory claims of fact, either knowing they were false or having been recklessly indifferent to their truth or falsity,
When you refuse to just watch a TWENTY MINUTE VIDEO before defaming a child — what could define “reckless indifference to truth or falsity” than that?
This is black-letter law — by which I mean, the sections written in BIG BLACK LETTERS to let you know that these are foundational points of the law upon which all other law is based.
And this judge just threw black-letter law out the window,
Because this was a contest between a left wing billion-dollar corporation and a little conservative kid from an unfashionable little town, and it doesn’t matter what the law says — the real law is that leftists win, always and forever.