Late yesterday, I got word that Andrew Wakefield — the the anti-vaccine leader who has lost his medical license, drew blood from his child’s friends at a birthday party, headlined a rally with 9/11 Truthers, and had his signature paper retracted — sued investigative journalist Brian Deer and British Medical Journal editor Fiona Godlee. For defamation. In Texas.
That’s not a joke (and, as Amy Wallace can tell you, no matter how ridiculous a lawsuit might seem, it can still be incredibly painful and time consuming to deal with). The PDF of Wakefield’s complaint is online; this section actually made me laugh out loud:
The Defamatory Statements were and are false and written and published with actual malice and intended to cause damage to Dr. Wakefield’s reputation and work as a researcher, academic, and physician and to permanently impair his reputation and his livelihood.