After an incredibly bad couple of weeks, in which it had to retract a story, saw veteran reporters resign, get saddled again with the fake news mantra and have some of its producers and contributors outed in saying the Trump-Russia “collusion” story is bogus, CNN may also be in a bit of legal trouble.
Well, actually, they may be in a lot of legal trouble.
Stung by President Donald J. Trump’s tweet of a meme in which he is shown during his WWE wrestling days as beating up a man whose face is hidden by a CNN logo — and no doubt angered by it — the network delved into who was responsible for creating the meme, and actually found out who it was, according to the network.
Here is Trump’s tweet containing the meme:
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 2, 2017
After the president tweeted the meme, ”New Day” co-host Chris Cuomo tweeted out a thinly veiled threat, ‘asking’ whether the network ought to reveal the name of the Reddit user (who turned out to be someone named “HanAssholeSolo”):
— Mark M. (@mmontuori) July 5, 2017
“Should CNN reveal name of Reddit user who made Trump wrestling video? Had a lot of bigoted and hateful material on page and website,” Cuomo tweeted.
The Reddit user eventually apologized, but that didn’t seem to matter.
As reported by Zero Hedge, that tweet appears to mimic a similar threat made by the networks’ Andrew Kaczynski, who wrote:
After posting his apology, “HanA**holeSolo” called CNN’s KFile and confirmed his identity. In the interview, “HanA**holeSolo” sounded nervous about his identity being revealed and asked not to be named out of fear for his personal safety and for the public embarrassment it would bring him and his family.
CNN is not publishing “HanA**holeSolo’s” name because he is a private citizen who has issued an extensive statement of apology, showed his remorse by saying he has taken down all his offending posts, and because he said he is not going to repeat this ugly behavior on social media again. In addition, he said his statement could serve as an example for others not to do the same.
CNN reserves the right to publish his identity should any of that change. [emphasis added]
So in other words, if this person does not continue to ‘behave’ in a manner that CNN approves of, they will out him.
Isn’t that blackmail? Or extortion, as defined by the law?
Why, yes it is, say those who ought to know, one of them being Sen. Ted Cruz, former solicitor general for the state of Texas, where he argued successfully before the U.S. Supreme Court, and former associate deputy attorney general of the Justice Department in the Bush administration. He has pointed out that Georgia law (where CNN is located, in Atlanta) strictly defines “theft by extortion” to include “dissemination of any information tending to subject any person to hatred, contempt, or ridicule or to impair his credit or business repute.”
(1/2) Troubling. I assume CNN's lawyers are examining GA § 16-8-16 Theft by extortion. If CNN constructively obtained the gif-maker's IP… https://t.co/ChxqocuDgc
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) July 5, 2017
(2/2) it's a GA crime if they threatened to "Disseminate any information tending to subject any person to hatred, contempt, or ridicule…." https://t.co/ChxqocuDgc
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) July 5, 2017
Could this land Cuomo in hot water, legally? Maybe. Though Cuomo produces and hosts his show in New York City, Wikileaks’ Julian Assange pointed out that New York state also takes a rather dim view of unfavorable activity like “coercion” and “extortion.”
— Julian Assange (@JulianAssange) July 5, 2017
Cuomo’s ignorance of the law aside, even one of his show’s own producers has no use for him, stating in one of Project Veritas’ recently-released undercover videos, “…[I] just can’t stand that guy [Cuomo] when he talks, we’re like, ‘Shut up.’”
Others were also critical of CNN’s lack of journalistic ethics. The Washington Examiner noted that the network should have recused itself from covering the story in the manner it did, simply because it seems less like “news” coverage and much more like a vendetta. (RELATED: It’s time to end fake news, dismantle the corporate media fakers and reveal the TRUTH to all Americans)
If the network pays a hefty price for its alleged crimes, that would be sweet poetic justice, given all the times it has been wrong about the president, his staff, and his administration. And it would send a message to the rest of the Trump-hating “mainstream” media that Trump Derangement Syndrome can be costly.
J.D. Heyes is a senior writer for NaturalNews.com and NewsTarget.com, as well as editor of The National Sentinel.