Slander and Libel

 

The laws have not changed but the burden of proof seems to have changed.

These days the burden of proof seems to rest on the prosecution where as it used to rest on the defense.

It used to be that the person who did the slander had to prove the truth of their statements and they also had to prove that it did not cost the defendant any money.

Now it seems to be the exact opposite. Now the defendant has to prove that the statements made were wrong (which can be very hard to do) and they also have to account for the money that it cost them and their reputation. That can be even harder to do.

This issue costs billions of dollars and ruins many lives. Making life hell for someone just to make hell for them was unheard of. Now it seems to be de rigueur.*

You can see what a mess it has made of our society.

It used to be that if you stained a person's reputation with statements then you had better be ready to prove those statements 100% or else go to prison.


*We are so used to seeing this on tv or reading about it that we don't realize that it is a crime to make a person's life hell just to make it a hell. It is a threat.

It is the showing of their intent to destroy a person which makes it a crime. Even though violence is not being used this attempt to destroy a person shows a willingness to commit violence and that is a crime. Don't you realize that this is intimidating?

So the law against making criminal threats was one that was prosecuted but as I recall there were two other laws that we used. At least one of them was better.

 

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2010 John Pinil