Redskins Owner Dan Snyder Sues DC Paper
by James Buchanan
NBC Washington reports: “[Washington] Redskins owner Dan Snyder filed a $2 million lawsuit Wednesday against the parent company of the Washington City Paper. The suit stems from an article written by City Paper reporter Dave McKenna in November. In the lawsuit filed in New York, Snyder says that the City Paper has engaged in an ongoing campaign to smear his business and personal reputation, has published more than 50 columns in which he was the subject of derision, ridicule and/or vilification, and that the November cover story on him featured an anti-Semitic depiction of Mr. Snyder with horns on his head, bushy eyebrows, and surrounded by dollar signs. The lawsuit claims that the article contained ‘numerous outrageous, false and defamatory statements of and concerning’ Snyder.”
If anyone wants to read the article in question, you can find it here. I’d quote the article here, but it’s not worth the risk. The cartoon seems to have been the last straw. Jews have always feared and hated caricature above all else.
In the 19th century, the Democratic boss of New York City, William Marcy Tweed, put out a hit on newspaper cartoonist Thomas Nast. “Stop them picters!” Tweed ordered his thugs. “I don’t care what the papers say about me; my constituents can’t read. But they can see picters!” Apparently Mr. Snyder feels the same way.
NBC goes on: “‘No reasonable person would accept the publication of these types of false, malicious, and/or defamatory statements about them or their spouses,’ according to the lawsuit. ‘Nor would any reasonable person tolerate an anti-Semitic caricature of himself or herself prominently displayed on the front pages of a newspaper containing false and malicious allegations.’ The Washington City Paper’s publisher, Amy Austin, responded to the allegations by saying: ‘It’s extremely unfortunate that Snyder believes it’s appropriate to threaten City Paper with litigation because he objects to our coverage. As a 30-year old newspaper and vibrant website committed to both in-depth news reporting and full-throated commentary, we do not believe that using the court system to stifle or chill free speech is ever appropriate.’ ”
If a newspaper has found enough material for more than 50 negative articles about Mr. Snyder, then maybe there is something wrong with him. Mr. Snyder can sue all he wants, but if the material in the articles is factual, his case will be thrown out and the Washington City Paper and Dave McKenna will get a lot of publicity at very little cost thanks to Mr. Snyder. As far as caricaturing Snyder as a greedy Jew with dollar signs in his eyes and horns on his head, would Mr. Snyder be complaining as much if the shoe didn’t fit?