The Islamic Society of Boston, a group which is a city—designated developer of a $22 million mosque next to Roxbury Community College, has launched a lawsuit alleging defamation and conspiracy to defame against a wide range of critics:
Steven Emerson, a Washington—based writer, and his organization, The Investigative Project Inc.;
William R. Sapers, a member of the Board of Trustees of Roxbury Community College;
The David Project Inc., a Boston—based group that focuses on issues related to the Arab—Israeli conflict, and its director of education, Anna Kolodner;
Citizens for Peace and Tolerance, a Cambridge—based group that has questioned whether the leaders of the mosque project were moderate Muslims; its president, Boston College political science professor Dennis Hale; and its director, Steven A. Cohen.
Under our legal system, anyone can sue anyone for anything. Responding to a lawsuit can bankrurpt an individual or an organization. The lawsuit weapon can easily become a means of silencing political opponents, especially in the hands of a well—funded antagonist. This is a serious problem for our political system.
Regardless of the merits of this case, the weapon is something that can be used against us. We need to implement the English system, whereby the loser of a lawsuit pays the legal expenses of the winner. Now more than ever.
Thomas Lifson 11 01 05