I just finished a grueling six hours in the kindergarten sandbox with the neighborhood bully. You'd think this was a criminal case and I was the defendant; in reality, I was the plaintiff, being deposed today in my three-year legal battle for free
speech against Dearborn SMART transit over their refusal of my ads offering help and in some cases a lifeline to survival for Muslim
girls (and any Muslims) living in dangerous and violent households: Geller vs. Detroit.
Our ad said: "Leaving Islam? Fatwa on your head? Family threatening you? Got questions? Get answers." That's all it said. It offered a life-saver for those who were completely and utterly alone with no system of support or help.
SMART claimed that this ad offering help to people in fear for their lives was "political," and hence outside their guidelines. It's ridiculous to say that saving lives is a political act, and so of course we won the case, but SMART continued to refuse our ads and appealed to the notoriously leftist Sixth Circuit. The Sixth Circuit overturned our win on mythical, "tortured and twisted" grounds, and so we are appealing.
Somehow, some hack real estate attorney, Christian E. Hildebrandt, injected himself on these critical issues of the day — on the wrong side, of course. But anyone who will shill and play the lapdog for big taxpayer bucks is welcomed with open arms (and believe me, folks, the legal bills on this case are huge vs. running my little campaign for $5,000 –that's how subdued these Islamic supremacists have rendered the Dearborn dhimmis of SMART). He is representing SMART, and questioned me today. Actually he defamed, slandered and smeared me — although let me emphasize that this is just my opinion, so that this ankle biter without dentures doesn't file suit against me for telling the truth about him.
In the course of my deposition, he attacked me and my esteemed and brilliant counsel, Robert Muise of the American Freedom Law Center with a profanity-laced tirade at the top of his voice. Hildebrandt actually spewed "sh*t" all over the transcript in his aggravation at Muise's adherence to American law in American courts. I never knew "sh*t" was a legal term. When the transcript becomes available, I'll post it.
Hildebrandt was so enraged at Muise because Muise was adhering to the letter of the law, and repeatedly calling upon Hildebrandt to make his questions more specific and less argumentative. Hildebrandt openly and belligerently admitted that he was indeed being argumentative. He demanded intrusive personal information about me that would put me in danger if it became widely accessible. He stomped. And he wailed. And he tried to blow the house down.
Clearly, Hildebrandt has to put on a ham act in order to earn his pound of flesh — he makes William Shatner look like Sir Lawrence Olivier. But legally and intellectually, he was like a two-dollar whore in a five-dollar show: out of his league, but dancing as fast as he could. I'm not a lawyer, but even I know that. I actually felt sorry for this neanderthal.
But as in all fictitious fables, the bad guy got his in the end. He came after me for six hours and came away empty. He tediously cross-examined me on every ad — every ad that came after the one that was in dispute, the "Leaving Islam?" ad — asking in ten different ways if each one was religious or political or both. How is any of that even relevant to whether or not the "Leaving Islam" ad is political, as SMART preposterously claims? Relevant doesn't matter, because the deck is stacked. Hildebrandt knows that the Sixth Circuit was bamboozled and that their decision has a good chance of standing.
The first judge who ruled on this case, Judge Denise Page Hood, who is hardly a Clarence Darrow acolyte, understood the law and so ruled in favor of our free speech rights. She understood the First Amendment. And so although she was clearly not sympathetic to us, she had to rule for us. But the Sixth Circuit created a whole new narrative out of whole cloth. Our ads were never rejected on political grounds. Individually, and in her official capacity, Beth Gibbons, marketing program manager of SMART, said that our ads were rejected because they were controversial. Not because they were political. It was always understood that these were religious ads. Gibbons testified that she saw "nothing about [the advertisement] itself that was political….I knew that [the fatwa advertisement] was of concern in that there is controversy on both sides of the issue on whether they should be posted." That was the testimony of SMART. That was their official testimony.
Five hours into this jackbooted clown's interrogation, and after every one of my ads were picked over like the carcass of some poor doe after the mountain lions have had at it, Hildebrandt presented copies of my top post from this morning and proceeded to wail, whine, and adopt yet again a wholly unjustified posture of aggrieved frustration thinly masking his hostility and aggression, over my editorial depiction of events to date. In other words, he wanted to attack my free speech — and any attack on free speech is invariably an attack on the free speech of every individual in America. He decried my description of SMART as being "more afraid of offending Islamic supremacists than concerned with saving lives."
Is that in any way unreasonable to assume that when a government authority would spend tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of dollars on legal counsel to stop my five bus ads from running so as to save lives? They would rather spend millions to take this to the Supremes than allow me to try to save lives — and they aren't caving? As I, a non-lawyer who is completely unversed in legalese, pointed out to Hildebrandt, this is my opinion. Helllooooooooo. This is still America, and I am entitled to my opinion that A is A. That's not opinion, that's fact.
Bill those hours, Hildebrandt, baby.
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