Pro-Trump cartoonist sues Anti-Defamation League for calling him anti-Semitic – PennLive

Posted By on July 17, 2020

Conservative political cartoonist Ben Garrison has sued the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) for allegedly defaming him by labeling one of his cartoons anti-Semitic, reported Newsweek on Tuesday.

The lawsuit, filed last Friday, seeks $10.35 million in damages.

It claims that the ADL caused Garrison insult, embarrassment, humiliation, mental suffering, anguish, injury to his name and professional reputation, and loss of business by alleging anti-Semitism in a 2017 cartoon featuring liberal Jewish philanthropist George Soros, a frequent figure of scorn by the Garrison claims additional anguish when an invitation to a 2019 White House social media event was rescinded after the ADL alerted the administration to the charge of anti-Semitism.

Described in Newsweeks report, the cartoon in question depicts Soros as a puppet being controlled by a green-tinted hand emerging from a curtain labelled Rothschilds, an apparent reference to the wealthy Jewish family that has long been central to anti-Semitic conspiracy theories.

Former General David Petraeus and H.R. McMaster -- Trumps former national security adviser who was forced out of his position after a tumultuous tenure that included criticism from the right and policy disagreements with Trump -- both appear as puppets being controlled by Soros.

The cartoonist is an avid supporter of President Donald Trump, with several of his cartoons depicting the 74-year-old Trump as a noticeably more youthful figure who often boasts a bodybuilder-like physique while vanquishing his political opponents with ease.

The ADL published an article on its website criticizing the cartoon, describing it as blatantly anti-Semitic after it appeared on a website titled McMaster Leaks run by alt-right commentator Mike Cernovich.

"The anti-Semitic theme of the Garrison cartoon is impossible to miss and individuals on social media complained about it," the ADL wrote, before mentioning that Cernovich later posted an edited version of the cartoon that cropped out the "Rothschild" reference.

The lawsuit claims that "The ADL is engaged in a targeted campaign of defamation to destroy Garrison's reputation and livelihood. ADL operatives throughout the country have excessively published the false and defamatory statement that Garrison is anti-Semitic." It also defends the cartoon by insisting that the conspiracy theory it depicts is, in fact, true.

Of note, Newsweeks post said that Garrisons cartoons have remained popular among conservatives regardless of claims of anti-Semitism and links to evidence-free conspiracy theories.

On Monday, White House Deputy Chief of Staff Daniel Scavino Jr. shared a Garrison cartoon seemingly disrespecting infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci as "Dr. Faucet" for advocating preventative measures to counter skyrocketing COVID-19 cases, that has drawn the ire of some conservatives.

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