Political Science

Troy Neal

WednesdayMar 7 at 5:02pm

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JRN410 – The Odd Man Out – Discussion 1 [Week 3]

Troy Neal

The one best proof that the plaintiffs can make would be that of falsity, however, there is a catch when it comes to falsity. I believe that the plaintiffs can use falsity to show that McCarthy was, in fact, untruthful in the majority of his book, but the caveat here is that the plaintiffs wouldn’t need to show much proof that McCarthy lied because both the plaintiffs and the defendant would be considered a private-person. When the courts consider it a private-person case then “the plaintiff in most jurisdictions will have to demonstrate only that the defendant failed to exercise reasonable care in preparing and publishing the defamatory material.” (Pember & Calvert, 2013).

As far as the best defense for McCarthy he could claim protection of opinion, because with protection of opinion, “opinion-filled exchanges, often heated and exaggerated, are part of the basic political and social discourse in the United States.” (Pember & Calvert, 2013) Even though he made wild accusations, he could claim that what he wrote down in his journal was what he heard and that his perspective after that was based on his opinion from those conversations.

I believe that McCarthy committed both libel and defamation for the simple fact that his remarks were proven on multiple occasions to be false according to the times and dates he stands behind. Thanks to his publisher actually publishing the book those remarks then became public which affected the parties involved in more ways than just their professional baseball careers. As Brad Allen, a pitcher that played with McCarthy has said, “I’m looking for a job, and my wife is worried sick – it makes me look lazy and sorry.” (Hill & Schwarz, 2009) McCarthy’s comments in his book have now affected the lives of people not directly involved, but for those who are directly involved, it is changing their lives outside of baseball as well.


Hill, B. & Schwarz, A. (2009) Errors Cast Doubt on a Baseball Memoir. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/03/sports/baseball/03book.html?_r=2 (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.

Pember, D. R. & Calvert, C. (2013). Mass media law (18th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.

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