What is Libel per se?

On 4 Feb 2001 14:50:02 GMT, Chesstours <72142.335@CompuServe.COM> wrote:

>As Don Schultz discovered in his bogus $21 million lawsuit against GM Larry Evans, >TRUTH IS A COMPLETE DEFENSE AGAINST LIBEL. >--

While this is generally true, it is not true in all cases.

For example, for the past two years, Tom Dorsch has been saying on the chess Internet newsgroups that I have engaged in homosexual activity.

That is called libel per se. Even if it were true, which it is not, it is still libelous.

The classic case is that it is libelous per se to impugn the unchastity of a woman.

She does not have to prove that she is a virgin to win her case in court. Even if she is not a virgin and you said that she was not a virgin, so what you said was true, you have still committed libel per se and must pay her damages.

In the case of Tom Dorsch calling me homosexual, he does so from a secure position because he lives in the San Francisco Bay Area and it would be impossible for me to win that case in court there, because everybody is queer out there.

On this newsgroup, there are two frequent posters who are known homosexuals. One is open about it. The other hides it. Many but probably not a majority know who the one who is hiding it is, but nobody has said it thus far. I suppose that if someone did say it, that would be a case of libel per se, even though it is true.

In the case of Tom Dorsch calling Bill Goichberg a "white collar criminal", the courts have ruled that calling someone "a crook" is so vague and general that it is not libel per se. One has to be more specific.

This may be the reason why Tom Dorsch, who has been to law school even though he flunked the bar exam four times (libel per se?), is always vague and general in making his accusations. He never says specifically what he is accusing anybody of doing. Look as his posts and try to find one where he says something so definite that he could be sued over it. Tom Dorsch almost never provides facts. He just speaks in vague generalities.

Sam Sloan