Suddenly, Jack Thompson is Feuding With Former Louisiana Allies

August 7, 2006 -
Controversial Miami attorney Jack Thompson appears to be burning bridges in Louisiana, the state where he has enjoyed the most success to date in his long-standing crusade against violent video games.

A series of e-mails forwarded to GamePolitics by Thompson detail a rapidly deteriorating relationship with the office of Louisiana Attorney General Charles Foti. Foti is a named defendant in ESA/EMA vs. Foti, the video game industry's constitutional challenge to the state's recently-passed video game law.

In particular, the mercurial Thompson expresses frustration with Deputy A.G. Burton Guidry, the man leading Louisiana's defense against the game industry's lawsuit. Hitherto, Guidry has been extremely supportive of the video game statute in his public comments, vowing on behalf of A.G. Foti to take the case to the U.S. Supreme Court, if need be.

Based on Thompson's e-mails, however, the working relationship between the Louisiana Attorney General's Office and the controversial Miami lawyer apparently began unraveling early yesterday morning. At 5:56 A.M. Thompson messaged Guidry, his secretary and Rep. Roy Burrell, sponsor of Louisiana's video game bill, matter-of-factly asking for a status report on the case.

Guidry replied by e-mail a few hours later. Included in his update was what appears to be a diplomatically-worded admonition to Thompson to work through channels:

"Waiting on ct decision re prel injunction. Also have issued initial discovery interrogatories re rating system.""Have received info that someone on your behalf has contacted cops program for support indicating they were working for state of la. Please cease all activity of this type without prior approval of our office. We appreciate your enthusiasm but all activity regarding la state interests must be cleared thru gen foti."

"Translation: Guidry is waiting for Federal Judge James Brady to rule on the game industry's request for a preliminary injunction. In preparation for arguing the case he has also begun the process of seeking information on how the ESRB rates games.

The "cops program" is believed to be Concerns of Police Survivors, a national organization that provides aid, counseling and assistance to the families of police officers killed in the line of duty. GP readers may recall that Thompson's recent attempt to submit an Amicus Curiae brief to the court was summarily rejected, in part because he had not named on whose behalf he was acting, beyond unspecified law enforcement personnel and education groups. Associating the amicus brief with COPS would appear to be Thompson's attempt to rectify that legal shortcoming.

Thompson's reply to Guidry's e-mail was swift - and harsh.

"You're way, way out of line... I am seeking to be amicus in this case, per the request weeks ago, from the Governor's Office, that I assist in trying to get this law declared constitutional.""Your office, on the other hand, has thwarted my efforts to help in that regard, most recently by your bizarre request that I not contact COPS to see if it might light (sic) to be my amicus. I have had a relationship with COPS before I ever heard of you all and this bill."

"Thompson also chided Guidry for not contacting "four experts" suggested by the Miami attorney as potential witnesses in the case. Thompson added, "I have REPEATEDLY asked you and your office to provide me information as to the status of the case, the name of a Louisiana lawyer who might be able to serve as co-counsel for amicus, and also why the court summarily and preliminarily, denied my amicus request... "

Thompson also implies that Guidry's office is not putting forth its maximum effort on the case.

"...There are lives at stake, and your office is acting as if this is some sort of debate over the tax code... Here you are freezing out the guy who wrote the bill..."

Later on Sunday, Thompson copied GamePolitics on a letter which he apparently faxed to Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Babineaux Blanco. Gov. Blanco, readers may recall, signed the video game bill into law, thus triggering the constitutional challenge by the video game industry. Thompson's fax to the Governor includes:

"...I wrote the bill... I testified... You then signed this bill into law... Terry Ryder of your office specifically asked me... to assist... that this constitutional law would be defended adequately in the face of the violent video game industry's assault upon it in federal court."

Terry Ryder is listed as Gov. Blanco's Executive Counsel on her official website.

"I regret to inform you," Thompson continues, "that... your Attorney General's office has utterly dropped the ball... I would respectfully suggest that you... tell your Attorney General, Mr. Foti, either to do his job or get out of the way so that others can do it for him."

Asked whether he was concerned about burning bridges with Louisiana officials, Thompson's terse reply to GP via e-mail read simply, "There are no bridges."

E-mail requests for comment from Deputy A.G. Guidry, Rep. Burrell, and Exective Counsel Terry Ryder were not answered by press time. In all fairness, their respective offices were closed on Sunday as we assembled this story. GP will, of course, report any comments received from Louisiana officials on this matter.

 
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MaskedPixelanteI don't like the new 3DS, mostly because it means there's a good chance future 3DS games won't be compatible with the current models.08/29/2014 - 9:30am
ConsterI don't get why Amazon decided to buy this "Twitch" fellow, really. It took him ages to beat Pokemon.08/29/2014 - 8:31am
ZippyDSMleeIt goes without saying that we need to et rid of the bullies on both sides that are far worse than Sarkeesian or Quin will ever be.08/29/2014 - 8:24am
ZippyDSMleeI'm talking more about the genreal movement and how silly it is, as for Sarkeesian half of what she is says rings hollw while the other half tend to be over exsagerated.08/29/2014 - 8:22am
Avalongod@Papa, agreed. I think people are reluctant to get involved if they're not the target. But I think we need to take responsibility as a community to confront harassing behavior, whether on gender or race.08/29/2014 - 7:23am
E. Zachary KnightSo Nintendo has given gamers what they want and have fractured the 3DS user base at the same time. http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/224476/Nintendo_reveals_the_New_Nintendo_3DS.php08/29/2014 - 7:12am
Papa MidnightI could say the same about race. I certainly enjoyed being on the receiving end of this while playing StarCraft II this past week: http://i.imgur.com/mIZA1QB.png (and this is actually mild compared to what I usually see). Report players? What a joke...08/29/2014 - 12:29am
AvalongodWhether you approve of Sarkeesian's view or not, no woman deserves to be the target of that kind of harassment and it won't stop until men tell each other it's not appropriate under any circumstance.08/28/2014 - 8:44pm
AvalongodI'm guessing the twitter account was a troll, but come on, I'm sorry, it's just disgusting someone is saying those things to Sarkeesian whether serious or a joke.08/28/2014 - 8:43pm
ZippyDSMleesocial movement that is bringing most of these issue to the spot light to be nothing but trend mongering white knighting bullies who are not much better than the hateful moronic bullies on the other side.08/28/2014 - 5:20pm
ZippyDSMleereflects the world we live in while the rest is the worst stuff that should be focused on. Leaving whats reflected in the same boat as everything else that's exaggerated and skewed by media/fiction and happliy consumed by current society. I find the socia08/28/2014 - 5:20pm
ZippyDSMleemales live off the power fantasy but once you realize as a male you will never reach what fiction or media calls perfect it demoralizes you just the same. And I would not call female negative stereotypes rampant and out of control not when 70-80% of it re08/28/2014 - 5:19pm
ZippyDSMleeNot saying that there is not a difference in the treatment of males and females in media, but males are begin painted as near perfect superhumans with cliched flaws it dose as much damage to the psyche as how females are treated. Sure you could claim that08/28/2014 - 5:19pm
ZippyDSMleeNeeneko:As I said if you do not 100% belive it then you are a Neanderthal. Theres more gray to everything than black and white.08/28/2014 - 1:27pm
NeenekoMeh, the "PCism" is just trotted out when people do not know their place and dare to complain about things the speakers think are fine. How dare people complain about how they are treated/portrayed, it is not like it bother us, our feelings matter!08/28/2014 - 1:13pm
ZippyDSMleeNeeneko I do not think its against feminism but rather against PCisim’s and that most things are offensive since if you do not believe that you are a Neanderthal that beats women,ect..08/28/2014 - 12:48pm
Neenekocomplete with the standard 'she is a lying and attacking the game industry! threats are wrong but she did it to herself' comments.08/28/2014 - 11:28am
Neenekosad, but not surprising. the backlash against feminism has been growing the last few years.08/28/2014 - 11:25am
PHX Corphttp://www.rawstory.com/rs/2014/08/27/feminist-video-game-critic-forced-to-leave-her-home-after-online-rape-and-death-threats/ Feminist video game critic forced to leave her home after online rape and death threats08/28/2014 - 9:43am
Uncharted NEShttp://kotaku.com/once-again-atlus-doesnt-want-you-to-spoil-the-new-pers-162782610808/28/2014 - 5:17am
 

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