Friday, June 14, 2019

Link and commentary: The Dangerous Defamation Judgment Against Oberlin College

The Dangerous Defamation Judgment Against Oberlin College: BY JOHN K. WILSON

An interesting essay on why the ridiculous verdict in Gibson v. Oberlin College is, for lack of a better description, "Fucked Up and Bullshit."  I agree with the writer that what ever bad conduct was directed at the plaintiffs, it definitely was not standard defamation.  I was actually thinking yesterday, is it really defamation to be called a racist?  I mean really?  Save when it is a accusation tied to misconduct, unlawful, prohibited discrimination (and properly filed pleadings are privileged if I recall correctly?)  I know a lot of people fear being called racist as much as reasonable people fear getting a chronic disease.  Others just don't give a fuck, or just throw the accusation right back at who ever called them that.  But it is usually just somebody's opinion, I think.

But I really think the judge committed reversible error in not kicking the whole case out on motion for summary judgment.  And like I said in my last post, the theory of harm and damages was just bananas.

Now I finally got the answer to my question, why was there no defense of truth, or evidence at trial about whether or not Gibson's has a reputation at least among not white folk, of being racist?  Turns out I learned, over on the Althouse blog earlier today, that the judge specifically prevented the defense from introducing any evidence of that.  Basically the judge took away what is one of the standard defenses to defamation; truth.  So we have reversible error at the trial as well.  I don't think this judge's reputation will survive unscathed here.  And the idiotic reason he excluded the defense as a whole and testimony regarding that matter was because the kids in the original incident that caused this shit show said they were not victims of racism . . . when they plead out on much lesser charges, thereby avoiding felony convictions.   Never mind that aspect, but since when is a statement made in relation to a plea bargain, that has no bearing on the criminal charge, a finding of fact binding other cases?  Ohio law might be weird, but not that weird, I am guessing.

For either of these reasons, the appellate court can vacate this ruling, even if they really are doing it as a public policy, institutional level, can't let this shit stand, sort of reason, actually.

And the part that the appellate court can not dare talk about in a court's opinion, is the sick, twisted politics at work here.  Just as much as on the conservative blog where I first read about this case, the peanut gallery over at Althouse's blog were hailing this as a critical win in their idiotic Culture War.  Because them SJWs and liberal eggheads on those out of touch college campuses are way out of touch with "normal" folk.  So the rabid conservatives say.  Shit.  Even one yokel posted some psychotic quote about how all of them want to kill all of us.  Pretty sick, seriously disturbing shit.

Parting shot (pun not intended.)  If a well traveled blog like Althouse was held to the same standard that the judge and jury held Oberlin College to, the owner would be open to all sorts of liability based on the putrid shit some of the visitors post.  Good thing that is not the case and the law.  Yet.

(Oh.  A reminder.  Buried in the earliest part of this blog, is my disclaimer.  Every thing I post here is just my damn opinion.  Got to remember to restate that every so often.  Bitches be suing for defamation for all sorts of crazy-assed reasons!)

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