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ACLU to Coal CEO Suing John Oliver: 'You Can't Sue People for Being Mean to You'

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The American Civil Liberties Union of West Virginia filed a shade-filled brief Tuesday supporting HBO's John Oliver in his legal battle with a coal executive.

Murray Energy and CEO Robert Murray filed a defamation suit against Oliver and HBO earlier this summer, claiming a June 18 segment was a "false" attack on the industry and on Murray, and later sought a gag order from the late-night host.


"Bob Murray thinks John Oliver was mean to him, and he doesn't want him to be mean again," the ACLU's Jamie Lynn Crofts wrote in the brief. "While that is sad for Bob Murray, it is unconstitutional for a court to order such relief."

As reported by The Hollywood Reporter:

"Our favorite quote (and there are so many good ones, plus a photo of Dr. Evil next to Murray Energy's general counsel): 'It is apt that one of Plaintiffs' objections to the show is about a human-sized squirrel named Mr. Nutterbutter, because this case is nuts. Which also begs the question: is Mr. Nutterbutter one of the 50 Doe Defendants included in this action?'"

Also from the brief:

The ACLU states its case.

For a deeper dive:

Quartz, Hollywood Reporter, The Hill, Slate, Washington Examiner

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