Just as CNN settled Nicholas Sandmann's $275 million defamation lawsuit for an undisclosed sum, Reza Aslan, a former CNN talker, deleted his nasty tweet that called Sandmann "punchable."
Like much of the radical Left, Aslan vilified Sandman after the Covington Catholic High School student famously stood toe-to-toe with "Native American elder" and fake war hero Nathan Phillips at the Lincoln Memorial last year.
Aslan likely deleted it, Sandmann's attorney Robert Barnes said, because he wised up after being served this week with a defamation claim filed over the summer.
Included in that legal action is Democrat presidential candidate Senator Elizabeth Warren, who also smeared the boys from Kentucky.
Though Barnes filed the lawsuit on behalf of nine Covington Catholic boys in August, Aslan didn't delete the tweet until two days ago, Barnes told PJ Media, when his team pinned down the former CNN loudmouth's address.
"Honest question," Aslan wrote last January. "Have you ever seen a more punchable face than this kid's?"
Aslan, an Iranian immigrant whom CNN fired because he repeatedly called President Trump a "piece of sh*t," was unapologetic. Until now, apparently.
Tweeted Barnes, "Apparently, Reza Aslan got served the suit I filed against him on behalf of #CovingtonBoys."
Aslan is just one of 12 defendants that Sandmann and eight other Covington boys sued, including Warren of Massachusetts, Democrat Representative Deb Haaland of New Mexico, CNN's Ana Navarro, Maggie Haberman of the New York Times, and hate-Trump comedienne Kathy Griffin.
The lawsuit accuses the angry leftist mob of smearing the boys. "False and Defamatory Accusations against the plaintiffs are defamatory per se, as they are libelous on their face without resort to additional facts, and as clearly demonstrated here, [the plaintiffs] were subjected to public hatred, contempt, scorn, obloquy, and shame," the lawsuit alleges.
The conduct of the plaintiffs, based on the false facts the defendants placed and circulated into the court of public opinion, led to these lifetime labels on these minors: "display of hate, disrespect and intolerance"; "heartbreaking"; "decency decayed"; "racist"; "cried for America"; "infamous"; "gall"; "shameful"; "darker chapters"; compared to genocide; "laughing and egging on"; "hurtful" behavior; "awful"; "cavemen gestures"; "taunting"; "harassing"; "stalking"; "mocking"; "bullies" who should be doxed, "named and shamed", expelled from school, denied admission to college, be punched in the face, and their lives ruined.
Barnes told American Greatness that "he is representing nine Covington Catholic families for free and that the other suits are tied up in state court except for one, which is on appeal in the 6th Circuit. There were originally ten plaintiffs, he said, but one is stepping back to avoid name disclosure."
The lawsuit, PJ Media reported, asks for "damages in an amount not less than $15,000 but not more than $50,000 against each defendant" for each boy, which exposes each defendant to a judgment between $135,000 — $450,000.
A per se defamatory statement is one that is intrinsically false and damaging to the victim's reputation.
What They Said
Aslan's tweet might have been one of the more mild comments. In still-published tweets, Navarro called the boys "racist MAGA-hat wearing teens," and Haberman said they were "laughing and egging on the behavior" and suggested expulsion from school. Warren said Phillips, who lied repeatedly about his military service, "endured hateful taunts," while Haaland claimed the boys "harassed and mocked" the faker.
Among the worst, however, were Griffin's:
The reply from the school was pathetic and impotent. Name these kids. I want NAMES. Shame them. If you think these f****rs wouldn't dox you in a heartbeat, think again....
Names please. And stories from people who can identify them and vouch for their identity. Thank you.
Griffin, who wrecked her career when she published a photo of herself holding the bloody mask that was supposed to be the severed head of Donald Trump, might well get those names when she has to settle the lawsuit.
As for Aslan, deleting the tweet won't help his case. Doing so only when he was served suggests he knows the tweet was false and defamatory. As well, the tweet was still published when Barnes filed the lawsuit on behalf of his clients.
R. Cort Kirkwood is a long-time contributor to The New American and a former newspaper editor.