The James Tracy Legal Defense Fund‘s activities have come to fruition in a very significant way. As may MHB readers already know, James Tracy v. FAU et al. was filed in United States District Court on April 25, 2016. The case has thus far been covered by an array of national media, including CBS, the Washington Post, the New York Times, Newsweek, and Inside Higher Ed.
CBS, “Report: Sandy Hook Denier Launches First Amendment Lawsuit,” April 26, 2016.
Colleen Flaherty, “The Alleged Conspiracy Grows,” (original title, “Sandy Hook Denier Alleges Union Conspired with Florida Atlantic University to Fire Him,” Inside Higher Ed, April 27, 2016.
Max Kutner, “Sandy Hook ‘Truther’ James Tracy Sues Florida Atlantic University Over Firing,” Newsweek, April 26, 2016.
Richard Pérez Peña, “Newtown Conspiracy Theorist Sues University That Fired Him,” New York Times, April 26, 2016.
Lulu Ramadan, “James Tracy, Conspiracy Professor, Sues FAU For Wrongful Termination,” Palm Beach Post, April 26, 2016.
Susan Svriuga, “Professor Who Says Sandy Hook Was a Hoax Sues College That Fired Him,” Washington Post, April 26, 2016.
And for good measure here’s an unsurprisingly brief “update” from a South Florida network affiliate.
Admittedly, no mass media outlet can thoroughly address all facets of a 49-page suit. Still, some of the organs above, in particular the Washington Post, Newsweek, and Inside Higher Ed did delve in to the case and offered impartial reports; only the Washington Post’s story actually linked to or provided a full copy of the TracyvFAU complaint.
On the other hand, the Palm Beach Post editors’ suggestion that this is a “wrongful termination” action is somewhat misleading. In fact, the suit involves defense of the constitutional rights shared by all US academics and lay citizens.
The defendants have now retained counsel and have petitioned for extensions to file their responses; the judge has referred all parties to mediation, a mandatory maneuver preceding the formal litigation process. A trial date is set for May 1, 2017. Additional information on case developments will immediately be made available via the Florida Civil Rights Coalition.
Those who may wish to support Prof. Tracy’s legal action can find out how to do so by visiting the James Tracy Legal Defense Fund.