March 5, 1999
I am in receipt of your letter dated March 1, 1999.
Please understand that I do not in any way mean to suggest that the Miss America Organization, which it seems from your letter is constituted in New Jersey, is "[t]he representative of a criminal gang which engages in international terrorism."
However, the actual winner of your beauty contest, Miss America Nicole Johnson, is in fact, "the representative of a criminal gang which engages in international terrorism", namely the Jerry Falwell organization in Lynchburg Virginia, with which Miss Johnson is affiliated.
Perhaps you failed to recognize the significance of the fact that your client first won the Miss Lynchburg contest, then went on to win Miss Virginia and finally became Miss America.
Please understand that I myself grew up in Lynchburg Virginia and I know much more about them and about the background of your client, Miss America Nicole Johnson, than probably you know.
In particular, the Jerry Falwell organization, with which your client Miss America Nicole Johnson is affiliated, has kidnapped my daughter Shamema Honzagool Sloan and is holding my daughter prisoner in the Thomas Road Baptist Church in Lynchburg Virginia, a church which your client Miss America Nicole Johnson attends.
I fully agree that it would have been unfair and inappropriate to select the winner of a mere beauty contest on the basis of political or religious affiliation. I have no doubt that your client Miss America Nicole Johnson is a nice lady. There are many people in the Thomas Road Baptist Church who think of themselves as nice and fine people and who also think that it is a wonderful thing that they have got this child from Pakistan in their church. However, that child, who was actually born in New York City, was kidnapped and is being held prisoner by them from her parents.
If you want me to publish on my web site or anywhere else an apology saying that I did not mean to imply that the Miss America organization is "a criminal gang which engages in international terrorism", I will be happy to do so. However, if you want me to state that Miss Nicole Johnson is not "[t]he representative of a criminal gang which engages in international terrorism", this I cannot do, because she is in fact the representative of the Jerry Falwell organization, and the Jerry Falwell organization is in fact is "a criminal gang which engages in international terrorism", in particular the kidnapping of my daughter, who was kidnapped in Fujairah, United Arab Emirates on October 7, 1990, when she was 8 years old.
Furthermore, unlike a newspaper which has substantially the same readers every day and where an apology or retraction can be expected to reach much the same readers who read the original allegedly defamatory statement, my web site receives about 70,000 hits per day (on all five of my domain names combined) and is visited by an estimated 20,000 viewers every day. Although I do know that there are some readers who have become addicted to my web site and who read it every day, I presume that the vast majority are only one time visitors and that the people who would read my "apology" would be a different group from those who read the original statement.
Furthermore, you face a problem, which I am sure you have recognized already: If you do sue me for defamation, I will of course have the opportunity to prove in a court of law here in New York that my statements are true and that your client Miss America is indeed a representative of the Jerry Falwell organization and that that organization is in fact "a criminal gang which engages in international terrorism" and that my daughter was kidnapped and is being held prisoner in their church to this day.
In fact, I would like nothing better than to finally get the opportunity which your lawsuit will bring to prove this. Jerry Falwell virtually controls the news media in Lynchburg, including the Lynchburg News and Advance, and no Virginia newspaper has been willing to publish my story that my daughter was kidnapped for that reason, but here in New York where your trial will presumably be conducted, the news media is not so influenced. Thus, I will have the opportunity to prove in court, in front of a jury, and possibly even before the news media, that my daughter was in fact kidnapped from her parents by members of the Jerry Falwell organization and that my daughter is being held prisoner to this day in their church.
I think that you will quickly realize and that indeed you have already realized that your proposed lawsuit against me will be counter productive.
Just to repeat, I am entirely willing to publish a statement on my website and elsewhere that I did not mean to imply that the Miss America organization itself is "a criminal gang which engages in international terrorism".
Very Truly Yours,
By e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org