KIA VAUGHN V. DON
THE CASE: Rutgers
center Vaughn is suing the shrunken radiohead for defamation and slander after
he called her and her teammates "nappy-headed hos" during a
THE EXPERTS SAY:
"It's about the word ho and whether that was understood by listeners as
meaning she was a prostitute, or promiscuous, in a genuine sense, or if it was
simply a slur," says Rodney Smolla, dean of Washington and Lee School of
Law. "It may be offensive to a lot of folks, but my instinct is that a
court will say you cannot sue on the basis of that phrase, because it's an
insult but not libel."
THE PEOPLE SAY: SI
asked 12 people on the street their thoughts, and they split down the
BARRY BONDS V. CURT
THE POSSIBLE CASE:
Bonds has retained two lawyers who have threatened to sue anyone who has made
false and defamatory statements—presumably such as when Schilling implied on
HBO's Costas Now that Bonds took steroids.
THE EXPERTS SAY:
"All of the testimony to the grand jury and all the BALCO documents would
be fair game," says Howard Wasserman, an associate professor of law at
Florida International. "If you sue for defamation, you really are putting
those statements that you're alleging as false and defamatory out there for
repeated public review." Says Smolla, "If he does sue, he's playing
with fire. A great example of this is Oscar Wilde, who was accused of [sodomy]
and sued for libel. It then came out during the investigation that he was gay,
and he was ruined."
THE PEOPLE SAY:
Seven sided with Schilling. "Why would Bonds sue if it meant the sealed
documents were fair game?" asked one.
RICHES V. BARRY BONDS, BUD SELIG AND HANK AARON'S BAT
THE CASE: The
South Carolina inmate filed a suit claiming that the two men and the piece of
lumber engaged in a conspiracy to drive up baseball's TV ratings. The suit,
which seeks "42,000,000.00 million dollars in Swiss francs," also
alleges that Bonds used the bat to crack the Liberty Bell.