Kia Franklin

Update on 9/11 Lawsuits

As a follow up to our prior discussion on the 9/11 family lawsuits, the New York Times today covered the decision of 21 of the families to continue forward with their lawsuits againt airlines and airport security. 14 families took settlements after Monday's hearing, but the other families have decided they want a trial so they can get important information about what happened.

One father of a victim said in the article:

"My desire and goal is to try to find some answers. I want to know why Abdulaziz Alomari and Mohamed Atta were allowed to walk on planes in Portland, Me., with prohibited weapons. I want somebody to tell me why that happened.”

Also from the Times article:
Carl Tobias, a law professor at the University of Richmond, said it was common for settlements to mount as the pressure of a trial approached. But he predicted some holdouts.

“I think the dynamics here may be different from what I would call more garden variety kind of tort litigation,” he said. “It doesn’t seem this is entirely driven by money, though it may be for some people. People want to tell their stories and want to find out as much as they can in court.” (Read full article here)

Tort "reformers" may hate for us to realize that lawsuits aren't just about monetary compensation, and that litigants aren't just looking for money. These people want information. Their search for information will benefit the public at large. We all deserve to know what happened that day and what could have been done differently. We all also would stand to benefit from any impact this litigation has on improving public safety.

Kia Franklin: Author Bio | Other Posts
Posted at 2:07 PM, Sep 19, 2007 in 9/11 & Ground Zero
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It is extremely rare, maybe 1 in 10,000 lawsuits, that it isn't about the money. Then its usually someone so invested in their lawsuit that they can no longer tell the difference between their life and their legal claim

If information is the desired goal, then decline to accept any monetary awards. Better yet, call for a congressional inquiry or prod the local newspaper into doing an investigation

It is about the money and anyone that says otherwise is lying

Posted by: Paul W Dennis | September 19, 2007 7:23 PM

Dr Morgan Reynolds, the former Chief Economist of the US Dept of Labor, is suing private contractors alleging they defrauded the government by supplying bogus analyses for the official 9/11 NIST Report of an aluminum airplane with a plastic nosecone gliding into a steel/concrete building.

Dr Reynolds is represented by attorney Jerry Leaphart, and is demanding a Trial By Jury.

The US District Court, Southern New York, recently unsealed the case and Mr Leaphart is now notifying the Defendants.

See Dr Reynolds site for info and the Court Document PDF:

Dr Judy Wood, a former Professor of Mechanical Engineering from Clemson University, recently filed an appeal with the government for their refusal to retract their report on the World Trade Center destruction. Dr Wood (and Dr Reynolds) have compiled much evidence demonstrating that the WTC was destroyed with directed energy weapons. She has been in contact with government officials and is getting results. See Dr Wood's site for evidence of directed energy weapons and PDFs of official Request for Corrections filed with the government:

Dr Wood is also represented by Jerry Leaphart.

It's every American's duty to remove corrupt elements in the government.
Please help by distributing the above material to your local media.

Posted by: CB_Brooklyn | September 20, 2007 7:01 AM

People have been calling for Congressional inquiry and asking the local newspapers to do investigations around 9/11 for the past six years, to no avail. You can't exactly call your local newspaper to investigate classified information that the federal government has been guarding like a hawk. The civil court system offers a discovery process and court orders to compel production of the data these folks are looking for. If they were to settle before trial, they would not have access to it. They are seeking information. Anyone who doesn't appreciate this may be lying to themselves.

These families haven't won their lawsuits--they have no idea whether or not they will win the lawsuits. So, let's say they are in it just for the money. If that were the case then they should have just settled or taken the Victims Comp money--sure things--rather than risk getting nothing.

As for the charge that they should refuse to accept compensation if it's not about the money, this muddles the distinction between being entitled to compensation and being solely motivated by the pursuit of that compensation. It further assumes that if they were to accept compensation that would be proof that they were only in it for the money.

And on that note, who knows whether or not they'll take this compensation and keep it for their own personal gain? We don't. Perhaps they'll donate to their local legal aid clinic or to a non-profit that renders counseling services to those emotionally and psychologically affected by 9/11. That said, they're as entitled to do that as they are to put it in trust for their kids' college expenses, or anything else for that matter. But to assume that they're just in it to win it just betrays an anti-plaintiff bias.

These families are brave. They are taking a stand and seeking closure the best way they know how, in the face of unfounded and unreasonably harsh criticism. And they are doing a favor for the public by persistently asking the questions that have gone unanswered for six years.

Posted by: Kia | September 20, 2007 5:24 PM