Depp sued Heard, his ex-wife, for defamation over a 2018 op-ed she wrote for The Washington Post in which she described herself as a “public figure representing domestic abuse.” Though Depp was not named in the article, he claims it cost him lucrative acting roles.
The jury awarded Depp $10 million in compensatory damages and $5 million dollars in punitive damages.
It seems that the CNN reporters did not do a lot of research. In fact, Amber Heard did not write the op-ed that proved expensive. “The ACLU Says It Wrote Amber Heard’s Domestic Violence Op-Ed and Timed It to Her Film Release” (Jezebel, April 28):
ACLU staffers actually ghost-wrote The Washington Post op-ed at the center of the trial, in which Heard claimed to be a survivor of domestic violence, and they pitched on her behalf, timed to the release of Heard’s then-upcoming film, Aquaman.
Lesson 1 is therefore “Don’t let the ACLU write your op-eds”? (Lesson 1a is “Don’t believe CNN”? They don’t even mention the ACLU, whose role was apparently central.)
What other lessons can we take away from this tawdry spectacle? Also from Jezebel:
Today, on Day 11 of the Johnny Depp and Amber Heard defamation trial, the American Civil Liberties Union revealed in damning testimony that Amber Heard has given just $1.3 million to the organization after promising in 2016 to give $3.5 million of her divorce settlement to the organization—and her ex Elon Musk donated nearly half of that money ($500,000, to be exact).
Could Lesson 2 be “Don’t rely on the promises of a family court plaintiff”?
Separately, why is the ACLU involved in domestic violence? Here’s a list of civil liberties:
freedom of conscience, freedom of press, freedom of religion, freedom of expression, freedom of assembly, the right to security and liberty, freedom of speech, the right to privacy, the right to equal treatment under the law and due process, the right to a fair trial, and the right to life. Other civil liberties include the right to own property, the right to defend oneself, and the right to bodily integrity.
Maybe it is the “right to security”? But the typical domestic violence plaintiff (as distinct from domestic violence victim), like Amber Heard, is seeking cash, not security.
Also, is “right to life” a civil liberty? That sounds like “pro-life” and the ACLU is on the opposite side (see the abortion section of ACLU.org, which we learn that “the burden [of abortion restrictions] falls hardest on … LGBTQ+ people” (maybe Ketanji’s panel of biologists can explain that!)). How about “right to bodily integrity”? Is the ACLU opposed to forcing experimental injections on people? Far from it! “Civil Liberties and Vaccine Mandates: Here’s Our Take”:
Far from compromising civil liberties, vaccine mandates actually further them.
Circling back to Amber Heard, a domestic violence victim turned philanthropist, could the ACLU pay for the mess that they got her into? Their 2021 annual report lists assets of $748 million.
Related (very loosely):
- CNN reports that Small, Dick gave up his AR-15: Richard Small [i.e., Dick Small] is a self proclaimed “NRA Republican” and long-time gun owner who says the Uvalde, Texas, shooting made him question why he owned an AR-15-style gun
- “Amber Heard arrested in 2009 on charge of hitting girlfriend” (USA Today)
- How is Amber Heard doing as a philanthropist?
- ex-SEAL and bestselling author’s earnings compared to Amber Heard’s
- Amber Heard: brave and financially independent (said the Washington Post)